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Today is Don't Fry Day

fryThe National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention has designated today as Don’t Fry Day!  On this day(and everyday) you are reminded to protect your skin while enjoying the outdoors.

Why should you protect your skin:  The ozone layer forms a thin shield in the upper atmosphere, protecting life on Earth from the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays. In the 1980s, scientists began accumulating evidence that the ozone layer was being depleted. Depletion of the ozone layer results in increased UV radiation reaching the Earth's surface....

05/22/2015 11:04:44am
EWG's 2015 Sunscreen Guide

With the rates of melanoma – the deadliest form of skin cancer – continuing to surge across the United States, protecting yourself and your family from the dangerous effects of sun exposure has never been more important.

But not all sunscreens are created equal.

That’s why The Environmental Working Group analyzed 1,700 U.S. sun protection products to highlight the best and worst in their 2015 Guide to Sunscreens.

A whopping 80 percent of products EWG reviewed this year contain harmful ingredients or offer inadequate protection against dangerous ultraviolet radiation....

05/20/2015 09:03:33am
Pennsylvania Marks 20th Anniversary of Signing of Land Recycling Laws

The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) released a new video commemorating the 20th anniversary of the signing of Pennsylvania’s Land Recycling laws that encourage the voluntary cleanup and reuse of contaminated commercial and industrial sites.

The video features interviews with Governor Tom Wolf and former Governor Tom Ridge who signed Acts 2, 3 and 4 into law on May 19, 1995, at the U.S. Steel Tube Works in McKeesport, Allegheny County. It’s available on DEP’s YouTube Channel.

“Land is a vital resource....

05/20/2015 07:49:08am
Healthy and Safe Swimming Week 2015

Pools, waterparks, hot tubs/spas, splash pads, and water playgrounds are great places to have fun, be active, or just relax. Having fun while you swim this summer means knowing how to stay healthy and safe while enjoying the water!

Swimming is one of the most popular sports activities in the United States.1 And just 2.5 hours of water-based (or other forms of) physical activity per week has health benefits, we each need to do our part to minimize the risk of illness and injury....

05/18/2015 10:29:09am
Fury Road: All Your Environmental Disasters Come True

Imagine what the world would look like 50 years from now if every ominous environmental trend of today were to play out: climate change, deforestation, water shortages — plus a couple of thermonuclear strikes for good measure. That was the mandate from Australian filmmaker George Miller to his crew on Mad Max: Fury Road, a full-throttle action movie (due to hit theaters May 15) set in a postapocalyptic desert where lunatics with outrageous vehicles fight over water and oil. "Everybody on the set had to start from the same ground rules," Miller said, "which was that all the worst-case scenarios you read in the news have come to pass."

Miller's writing and directing credits couldn't be more diverse, from Fury Road‘s dark and violent Mad Max predecessors to such uplifting family films as Babe and Happy Feet....

05/13/2015 12:34:09pm
Amount Of Carbon Dioxide In Air Keeps Rising, Hits Milestone

Federal scientists said global levels of the most prevalent heat-trapping gas have passed a daunting milestone.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says in March, the global monthly average for carbon dioxide hit 400.83 parts per million. That is the first month in modern records that the entire globe broke 400 ppm, reaching levels that haven't been seen in about 2 million years.

Pushed by the burning of fossil fuels, global carbon dioxide is 18 percent higher than it was in 1980, when NOAA first calculated a worldwide average....

05/13/2015 09:43:21am
20+ Unique (and Crazy) Ways to Recycle Old Tires

Did you know that despite the small effort it takes to recycle tires, a whopping 240 million of them get tiresthrown away in the United States alone? Less than 7% of them are recycled, with 11% becoming fuel and about 5% of them being exported out of the country. The rest are stockpiled, thrown away illegally into the environment, or sent to the landfills. And 190 million tires waste away in the sun or somewhere else around the US each year....

05/11/2015 10:21:30am
Bee Safe with Pesticides

It's springtime ... and if you use pesticides where bees are present, always READ THE LABEL. Be sure you know how to use pesticides safely and correctly. More about protecting bees and other pollinators: http://www2.epa.gov/pollinator-protection/find-best-management-practices-protect-pollinators...

05/08/2015 09:21:16am
Live Webcast of Peregrine Falcon Banding Set for May 21

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and Pennsylvania Game Commission invites everyone to tune in for the annual Peregrine falcon banding event during a live webcast on Thursday, May 21. The banding will be held from 1 to 2 p.m. in the Rachel Carson State Office Building auditorium in Harrisburg, Dauphin County.

During the one-hour session, biologists will retrieve the newly-hatched nestlings, called eyases, from their nest, weigh them and place a metal band with a falcon-specific code around each bird’s left leg....

05/07/2015 09:36:58am
Chipotle Promises To Serve Food That’s Missing One Common Ingredient

Mexican food chain, with a location in Dickson City and another coming soon to Wilkes-Barre, promises to serve healthy, natural food to consumers.

In a first for a major restaurant chain, Chipotle Mexican Grill will begin serving only food that is free of genetically engineered ingredients.

“This is another step toward the visions we have of changing the way people think about and eat fast food,” said Steve Ells, founder and co-chief executive of Chipotle. “Just because food is served fast doesn’t mean it has to be made with cheap raw ingredients, highly processed with preservatives and fillers and stabilizers and artificial colors and flavors.”

Whether other major restaurant chains will follow Chipotle’s lead is uncertain....

05/06/2015 11:59:52am
National Wildflower Week, May 4 - 10, 2015

Across the nation, wildflowers growing beside highways, in gardens and elsewhere are valued for their flowernatural beauty. And as Lady Bird Johnson once said, they “give us a sense of where we are in this great land of ours.”  Commemorate these beautiful features of our landscapes by getting outside or learning more about them during National Wildflower Week May 4 -10.

Why do wildflowers matter? Wildflowers and native plants help conserve water, reduce mowing costs, provide habitat for birds, butterflies and other wildlife and protect the soil from erosion....

05/05/2015 10:03:35am
Will You Be Biking to School Tomorrow?

Bike to School Day is this Wednesday, May 6th.  Why should you bike to school?

It’s Fun!

Walking and bicycling bring a sense of joy and independence.

Healthier Habits

The trip to school is a chance for children (and adults!) to get the physical activity they need.

Cleaner Environment

Replacing car trips to school with walking or bicycling can reduce congestion and air-polluting emissions.

Promoting Safety

Building sidewalks, providing education programs and adding traffic calming measures are some of the ways to improve safety....

05/05/2015 09:57:25am
World’s First Algae Surfboard Makes Waves in San Diego

Energy Department-funded scientists at the University of California San Diego (UCSD) California Center for Algae Biotechnology have successfully demonstrated a uniquely Californian solution to replacing fossil fuels—surfboards made from algae.

These sustainable “surfboards of the future” are made of algal oil, provided by Energy Department-funded and California-based biotech firm Solazyme. The oil is converted to polyols by UCSD chemists and then sent to the surfboard manufacturer Arctic Foam to shape the foam boards and then coat them with fiberglass and a renewable plant-based resin....

05/05/2015 09:23:53am
Protect Your Drinking Water

National Drinking Water Week is May 3rd – 9th!

Of all the Earth’s water, most is ocean or sea (97%). About two percent (2%) of the world’s water is frozen and therefore unusable. That leaves a little less than one percent (1%) of the Earth’s water suitable for drinking water.  Safe drinking water relies on all of us.

During National Drinking Water Week, do your part to be informed, observant, involved and protective!

Find out how to protect your drinking water for life!...

05/04/2015 09:13:25am
Industry-Backed Chemical Safety Law "Doesn't Protect Pennsylvania Families"

An industry-backed bill changing the way the federal government regulates dangerous chemicals won't do enough to protect Pennsylvania families, a coalition of consumer watchdogs say.

Senate Bill 697, also known as the Vitter-Udall bill, is being considered by a Senate committee - but the legislation is also drawing criticism from public health advocates, environmental groups and chemical workers' unions.

Andy Igrejas, director of Safer Chemicals Healthy Families, says in too many cases it would tie the hands of the EPA - and would largely prevent states from doing what the EPA can't....

05/01/2015 10:21:50am
Morrissey Challenges Live Earth To Go Vegan

Morrissey recently wrote an open letter to advocate / former Vice President Al Gore and fellow Live Earth co-founder Kevin Wall to school the duo on the hypocrisy of serving meat or dairy products at the upcoming event dedicated to taking climate action.

In partnership with the United Nations, the second edition of Live Earth will take place June 18 with events planned on six continents over 24 hours. Following his involvement in the inaugural Live Earth in 2007, Pharrell Williams is serving as the creative director for Live Earth Road to Paris.

05/01/2015 08:36:00am
7 Ways Vegans Are Saving the Planet

1. Protecting Our Waterways: Because animals are so densely packed on today's industrial farms, they produce more manure than can be absorbed by the land as fertilizer. The runoff from these facilities often leaks into nearby rivers and streams.

2. Halting Habitat Destruction: According to the Center for Biological Diversity, reducing meat consumption is one of the best ways to save endangered species.

3. Saving Water: Animal agriculture uses a whopping 56% of water in the United States. In fact, just one hamburger requires 660 gallons of water to produce—the equivalent of 2 months’ worth of showers....

04/29/2015 08:14:18am
GOP Congress Gets Environmental ‘F' Grade So Far

The 114th U.S. Congress gets a failing grade from conservation and environmental groups for the lawmakers' first four months of the session.

The Climate Action Campaign, Defenders of Wildlife, The Wilderness Society, Clean Water Action - among others - have tallied a report card for the Republican-led Congress under Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker John Boehner.

Gene Karpinski, president of the League of Conservation Voters, says the lawmakers haven't done much of anything to protect land, water or wildlife, or to fight climate change....

04/28/2015 11:58:47am
Does Exposure to Nature Make Us Act Better?

A new study suggests that exposure to nature changes human behavior in a positive way. Research showed that people who viewed nature videos as opposed to videos depicting urban settings subsequently behaved in ways that were more cooperative and sustainable.  "Thus, the authors suggest that climate change advocates might consider using nature-focused messages, rather than economic or national security framings, to advance their cause.” Read more....

04/27/2015 02:25:42pm
Celebrate Arbor Day With The Best Trees For Wildlife

It’s Arbor Day and that means tree planting time!  When you plant a tree, you have a chance to restore and protect native floura that provide wildlife habitat and nourish the natural world.  Here are some native trees and the benefits they provide for a whole host of species:

Red Cedars

Red cedars, which are actually junipers, are real workhorses for wildlife. The evergreen offers birds and other wildlife year-round cover from predators and bad weather, along with places to rest, roost and nest. ...

04/24/2015 09:09:36am