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Category: lead poisoning

On Sunday, a story published in USA Today flagged this problem: "The EPA has not revised key hazard standards that protect children from lead poisoning since 2001,...

On Sunday, a story published in USA Today flagged this problem: "The EPA has not revised key hazard standards that protect children from lead poisoning since 2001, despite science showing harm at far lower levels of exposure than previously believed."

The story, by Alison Young, cites an array of evidence that EPA's standards are some five times higher than what many scientists believe is a safe level; experts also note that "no blood threshold level" has been identified as safe in children.  Yet, as the story also notes, realtor associations have fought hard against stiffening the standards, putting political pressure on the agency. Perhaps, not surprisingly, the EPA refused to grant Young an interview for the story...

In an attention- getting story this week (more than 17,000 Facebook likes as of this morning), Mother Jones political blogger Kevin Drum poses a fascinating question - is long-time contamination from 20th century leaded gasoline one of the major causes of violent crime? Cleverly titled,...

In an attention- getting story this week (more than 17,000 Facebook likes as of this morning), Mother Jones political blogger Kevin Drum poses a fascinating question - is long-time contamination from 20th century leaded gasoline one of the major causes of violent crime? Cleverly titled, "America's Real Criminal Element: Lead", the story delves into research that consistently maps out a connection between lead exposure and crime rates.

He begins by looking at the notable late 20th-early 21st century drop in violent crime in this country (barring, of course, mass murder which has ticked up), pointing out that the coast to coast reduction cannot logically be attributed to a patchwork of local police initiatives. What's needed, Drum says, is a coast to coast explanation, something in the national environment. Perhaps, for instance, a chemical exposure...

On Oct. 2, Kaitlyn Ridel had a story on the front page of USA Today in which she wrote, "Thousands of U.S. children with dangerous amounts of lead in their blood may...

On Oct. 2, Kaitlyn Ridel had a story on the front page of USA Today in which she wrote, "Thousands of U.S. children with dangerous amounts of lead in their blood may go unassisted this year because local health departments can't afford to monitor them, a survey of major cities by USA TODAY shows."

Tough stuff, and it was done the hard way--by surveying 21 local health departments to ask whether they had the resources to test for lead in accordance with new guidelines from the CDC that raised the number of children who need testing to 450,000 from 77,000.

If Ridel's name isn't familiar, it might be because she is a student at the University of Dayton and was an investigative-reporting intern at the paper when she wrote the story. "It was a humbling experience," she told Barbara Feder...

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Last week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration released a report, after much prompting by consumer advocates, revealing trace amounts of the toxic metal lead in 400 lipstick brands.  The report resulted (according to my unscientific Google search) in more than 400 stories and a few hilarious...