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Environmental News

Environmental News from the Great Lakes Region

Monday, January 8, 2018
Aquapod water treatment studied for water conservation at power plants
A low-energy water treatment system developed at the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC) has been selected for development by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) as an improved technology for water conservation in power plants. Source: Illinois Sustainable Technology Center, 12/7/17

2018 Emerging Contaminants in the Aquatic Environment Conference call for abstracts
The conference organizers - the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center, Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant, and the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Illinois - are requesting abstract submissions for oral and poster presentations at the Emerging Contaminants in the Aquatic Environment Conference (ECAEC18) to be held on June 5-6, 2018, at the I-Hotel in Champaign, IL.

Presentations will be accepted on the latest in emerging contaminant research, policies, outreach, and education. A special session will focus on per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs), which includes perfluorooctyl sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA).

Researchers, educators, businesses, government officials, regulatory agencies, policy makers, outreach and extension professionals, environmental groups, members of the general public, and medical, veterinary, and public health professionals are encouraged to submit abstracts.

Oral presentation abstracts are due on March 12, 2018.

Poster presentation abstracts are due on April 16, 2018. Source: Illinois Sustainable Technology Center, 1/8/18

Friday, January 5, 2018
Former Co-CEO Of Whole Foods Becomes A FoodMaven
Walter Robb, Whole Foods' former co-CEO, has joined up with Patrick Bultema, CEO and co-founder of the Colorado Springs startup FoodMaven, to do something about the growing food waste problem in the U.S.: sell it. Source: Fortune, 1/3/18

NRDC Mapping Tool Links Apparel Brands to Their Suppliers' Environmental Performance
A new mapping tool created by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and China's Institute of Public & Environmental Affairs (IPE) is ushering in a new era for transparency in China. The IPE Green Supply Chain Map -- the only of its kind in the world -- openly links multinational corporations to their suppliers' environmental performance. Source: Sustainable Brands, 1/3/18

Thursday, January 4, 2018
U.S. FDA halts use of triclosan in health care antiseptics
The antibacterial compound triclosan, already banned in the U.S. from consumer soaps, will no longer be allowed in antiseptic products used in hospitals and other health care settings. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration on Dec. 20 deemed triclosan and 23 other antiseptic ingredients to not be generally recognized as safe and effective. Source: Chemical & Engineering News, 12/22/17

Wednesday, January 3, 2018
Federal Appeals Court Gives EPA 90 Days To Propose Long-Awaited Lead Standards
A federal appeals court has ordered the Environmental Protection Agency to propose a new standard for lead inside homes within 90 days. NPR's Robert Siegel speaks with Eve Gartner, who litigated on behalf of groups suing the EPA to update the standards. Source: NPR, 12/28/17

Friday, December 22, 2017
NYS offers $3M in grants for e-waste costs
Over the course of six years, more than 260,000 tons of e-waste has been collected by and recycled under the State Electronic Equipment Recycling and Reuse Act. That amounts to more than 520 million pounds from 2011 through 2016, a press release from the State Department of Environmental Conservation said. And now, the state has made $3 million in grant funding available from its Environmental Protection Fund to help municipalities address the unintended costs associated with the collection and recycling of eligible e-waste. Source: Press Republican, 12/20/17

Apple sued over iPhone slowdown
Two Illinois residents have filed a class-action lawsuit against Apple in federal court in Chicago over the company's admission that it slows down older iPhones. Source: Crain's Chicago Business, 12/21/17

It's Not You, It's Your Battery--Apple Confirms iOS Update Slows Performance
iFixit weighs in on the recent news regarding Apple's old iPhone performance slow down, presenting the results of performance tests on older phones before and after battery replacement. Source:, 12/20/17

Apple Says It Slows Older iPhones To Save Their Battery Life
Confirming iPhone owners' suspicions that Apple purposefully slows the operation of older phones, Apple says that it does just that -- and that slowing down processors makes it easier for old batteries to perform after they've begun to lose capacity. But some customers say the company's strategy of dealing with the power demand pushes them to replace their older iPhones with newer models. Source: NPR, 12/21/17

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