road poison

from Pollution Online- this is important in keeping animals healthy

Coal-Tar-Sealant Runoff Causes Toxicity And DNA Damage

Runoff from pavement with coal-tar-based sealant is toxic to aquatic life, damages DNA, and impairs DNA repair, according to two studies by the U.S. Geological Survey published in the journals Environmental Science and Technologyand Science of the Total Environment.

Pavement sealant is a black liquid sprayed or painted on the asphalt pavement of parking lots, driveways and playgrounds to improve appearance and protect the underlying asphalt. Pavement sealants that contain coal tar have extremely high levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs).  Coal tar is a known human carcinogen; several PAHs are probable human carcinogens and some are toxic to fish and other aquatic life.

Rainwater runoff collected as long as three months after coal-tar-sealcoat application caused 100% mortality to minnows and water fleas, which are part of the base of the food chain, when the test organisms were exposed to ultra-violet radiation to simulate sunlight. The full study, reported in the scientific journal Environmental Science and Technology, is available online.

Exposure of fish cells to coal-tar sealant runoff damaged their DNA and impaired the ability of the cells to repair DNA damage. “The simultaneous occurrence of DNA damage and impairment of DNA repair has important implications for cell health,” said Sylvie Bony, who led the study at the Ecole Nationale des Travaux Publics de l’Etat (ENTPE), a French research agency in Lyon, France. The study is reported in the scientific journal Science of the Total Environment.

The studies were done to address the concern that rainfall runoff occurring within hours or days of coal-tar-based sealant application might be toxic to fish and other organisms in streams. The two studies collected and tested simulated runoff at various times beginning just hours after coal-tar-sealant application.

“The USGS has been studying coal-tar-sealcoat as a source of PAHs for 10 years, and findings from these two studies are consistent with what is known about toxicity and genotoxicity of these chemicals,” said USGS scientist Barbara Mahler.

A previous publication detailed the chemical concentrations in runoff from coal-tar-sealed pavement at a range of times following sealant application. The results, reported in the scientific journal Environmental Pollution, are available online.

Coal-tar sealants have significantly higher levels of PAHs and related compounds compared to asphalt-based pavement sealants and other urban sources, including vehicle emissions, used motor oil, and tire particles. Previous studies have concluded that coal-tar sealants are a major source of PAHs to lake sediments in commercial and residential settings, and that people living near pavement sealed with coal-tar sealant have an elevated risk of cancer.

SOURCE: U.S. Geological Survey

wonderful review from a fellow traveler

A question of survival for our wildlife, April 17, 2015

By Grady Harp (Los Angeles, CA United States)

This review is from: Water for Backyard Pets and Wildlife (Kindle Edition)

Thomas Hollyday is a well-known writer of mysteries – there are 6 volumes in his River Sunday Romance Mysteries Series – but he also is concerned about the environment and has published two books on the latter subject. One of the reasons Thomas’ book works so well for readers is the mater-of-fact neighborly way he has of expressing himself. In a very tender little preface he discusses a dream he had that changed his attitude, and then ties his dream into the content of this book: `So, after weeks of thought on this issue of animals and water, I decided to invent a water dish that would provide fresh drinking water to wildlife. It was one that was easy to use, portable, and worked in every season without electricity. I sold this device, the Solar Sipper, in markets all over the world. With the funds from this project, I began to champion preserving clean water resources for wildlife. These days, each morning I go to my backyard and place a Solar Sipper filled with fresh water outside for the wildlife. I always look around for a chipmunk with no tail. He’ll be a descendant of the one I dreamed about. If I should spot him, I’ll look into his eyes, give him a wink, and let him know that I’m trying.’ In his introduction he offers many facts, most of which we haven’t considered: `The purpose of this little book is to look into all the issues affecting drinking water for backyard animals. One thing is for sure. If our outdoor friends could get access to the safe water that our indoor pets enjoy, they would be a lot better off. That bowl of clean water next to the pet food dish is not always present in the back yard environment. You see, the indoor water passes the test of our town municipalities and water commissions. Before it enters the pipes to our house, it has undergone a bevy of corrections to make sure it is absolutely safe. If a new disease enters the water supply, the commission treats it immediately. This may not be true in all countries but it is for sure in the United States.’ And from this opening he addresses taking Inventory of our backyard habitat, noting Waterer Type (`outdoor animals deserve the same care as indoor animals. Clean their water dish and add clean water daily with the food’), Analyze the construction of the Watering Device, Analyze where animals drink, Heat and Cold out in the yard (and how to regulate that), and then he offers Government-based websites and Private Organization websites from which to gather information. This is a sensitive caring book by a man who cares about not only how humans are going to survive the current environmental crises, but also how we are responsible for assuring that our precious wildlife, often dependent on us, are treated equally! A must read for everyone who cares. Grady Harp, April 15

wonder how much snow melt becomes poluted immediately

The snow melting in the cities has road trash and salt in it and it will go into storm drains and thence into rivers and bays.

During the storm here in Boston there was much dumping into the harbor. Officials said it would be no pollution problem.Does any one know for sure?  What about rivers and stream further back in the country? I worry about the animals  using those sources of water.

age of water from Geology Page

Earth’s water is older than the sun | ‪#‎Geology‬ ‪#‎GeologyPage‬ Water was crucial to the rise of life on Earth and is also important to evaluating the possibility of life on other planets. Identifying the original source of Earth’s water is key to understanding how life-fostering environments come into being and how likely they are to be found elsewhere. New work from a team including Carnegie’s Conel Alexander found that much of our Solar System’s water likely originated as ices that formed in interstellar space. Their work is published in Science.

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Water was crucial to the rise of life on Earth and is also important to evaluating the possibility of life on other planets. Identifying the original source of Earth’s water is key to understanding how life-fostering environments come into being and how…|By Geology Page

free animal cartoon ebook

Free Ebook Feb 15 Nature’s Viewpoint cartoons. Want to know what the backyard nature creatures really think? Boston Cartoonist Thomas Hollyday is loved for his simple insightful creatures. He records the hilarious comments of his imaginary nature realm drawn from his childhood on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. A recognized humorist with a fluid line, his playful wildlife drawings guide us through the year with some of the funniest most poignant cartoons anywhere.

natures viewpoint cover 1115