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Air pollution linked to higher risk of lung cancer and heart failure

Air pollution linked to higher risk of lung cancer and heart failure

Two studies show effects on health of long- and short-term exposure to pollutants from traffic and industry. Air pollution, chiefly from traffic exhaust fumes in cities, is having a serious and sometimes fatal effect on health, according to two studies that link it to lung cancer and heart failure. —The Guardian, 07/16/13 More »

Nobel Laureates Call on President Obama and Secretary Kerry to Reject the Keystone XL Pipeline

Nobel Laureates Call on President Obama and Secretary Kerry to Reject the Keystone XL Pipeline

When 10 Nobel Laureates call on President Obama to reject once and for all the Keystone XL oil pipeline, perhaps it's time he do that. Ten recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize have written to President Obama and Secretary of State Kerry urging the rejection of the Keystone XL oil sands pipeline. The Laureates, many of whom urged the President to reject the pipeline in 2011, believe that now is the time for leadership by the United States on climate change. The rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline is a critical step in limiting the expansion of the Canadian oil sands - Canada's fastest growing source of greenhouse gas pollution. The oil sands also have devastating impacts on local land, water, air, and communities. —Portside, 06/21/13 More »

Hundreds of protesters make their way across the Golden Gate Bridge on Thursday

Hundreds of protesters make their way across the Golden Gate Bridge on Thursday

SAN FRANCISCO -- Calling a proposed oil pipeline across the nation's midsection a threat to public health in California, more than 1,000 nurses streamed across the Golden Gate Bridge on Thursday to urge that President Obama block its construction. It might not have seemed like an obvious target for nurses who had gathered for a convention in San Francisco, but the protesters - clad in red scrubs - said the connection between health problems and the proposed Keystone XL pipeline was real. The proposed 1,700-mile-long pipeline, which would carry oil from the tar sands oil fields in Canada to refineries in Texas, is a public health risk to all, even those a thousand miles away in San Francisco, said members of the group National Nurses United. —San Francisco Chronicle, 06/20/13 More »

Nurses Join Keystone XL Protest In California As New Report Warns Of Pipeline Health Risks

Nurses Join Keystone XL Protest In California As New Report Warns Of Pipeline Health Risks

As both a mom and a nurse, Katy Roemer worries about the health risks posed by the Keystone XL pipeline -- from the chemicals leaching into waterways where the tar sands oil is extracted, to toxins spewing from stacks where the resource is refined. "We are already seeing people in our communities facing record levels of asthma and other impacts from pollution," said Roemer, who works at Kaiser Permanente in Oakland, Calif., and lives near refineries already processing the heavy, molasses-like Canadian oil. "The pipeline has the potential to exacerbate those impacts, and the impacts of global warming," she added. —Huffington Post, 06/20/13 More »

California governor urges nurses to use union power to raise awareness of climate change

California governor urges nurses to use union power to raise awareness of climate change

SAN FRANCISCO — Gov. Jerry Brown on Thursday challenged his allies in the nation's largest nurses union to look beyond their own immediate concerns and help organize a movement to address global climate change. The Democratic governor enjoyed an enthusiastic reception from a packed room of nurses wearing red shirts at the National Nurses United conference in San Francisco. The union was a strong supporter of Brown in his 2010 gubernatorial race and helped him win voter support for his initiative raising the state's sales and income taxes last year. "You're a hell of a lot more radical, and forward and progressive than I am," the governor said. "I can't push you. You got to push me, but together we'll push our country to a much better place." —Associated Press, 06/20/13 More »

Tom Steyer ups climate change pressure on Obama

Tom Steyer ups climate change pressure on Obama

On Thursday, San Francisco billionaire climate activist Tom Steyer is launching a new online campaign Thursday in Washington, D.C. to turn up the heat on his friend President Obama to do more to take on climate change — starting with urging him again to oppose the proposed Keystone XL pipeline. Called “We Love Our Land,” it will run at least 10 weeks and be based largely on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and later, Change.org. If some street demonstrations grow out of this, fine, organizers said, but that’s not the point. It is an argument aimed squarely at Obama supporters who are disappointed that he hasn’t done more on climate change. —Joe Garofoli for SF Chronicle, 06/20/13 More »

Stop Austerity, Stop Keystone: Our Planet, Our Health

Stop Austerity, Stop Keystone: Our Planet, Our Health

Keystone represents the false choices of the austerity era. Jobs VS the planet. Economic recovery VS healthy communities. Our money or our lives. The Robin Hood Tax will heal our environment AND our economy. March across the Golden Gate Bridge with 350.org, 350BayArea.org, National Nurses United, Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, Sierra Club, Sierra Club SF Bay Chapter, CREDO, Food and Water Watch, Asian Pacific Environmental Network, EQUAL Health Network, California League of Conservation Voters, Center for Biological Diversity, Keystone XL Action Council, UNITE HERE! Local 2850, Movement Generation, Bay Localize, Citizens Climate Lobby, Sustainable San Rafael, Global Exchange, and other environment and public health advocates to send this message to Wall Street and Washington, DC. Tax Wall Street to heal the environment —National Nurses United, 06/10/13 More »

Labor Pains, Evergreen

Labor Pains, Evergreen

The battle over the tar sands pipeline among unions has been XL on drama. "For too long we have allowed some corporations to hold a gun to our heads and demand that we choose jobs or choose the earth.” That’s what Terry O’Sullivan, the general president of the Laborers International Union of North America, told green groups and fellow unions at a green-jobs conference in February 2009, just a few months after the union—one of the largest in the country—joined the Blue-Green Alliance, a group organized to advocate for a “clean economy.” —The American Prospect, 04/09/13 More »

The Tar Sands Disaster

The Tar Sands Disaster

Canada’s tar sands formations, landlocked in northern Alberta, are a giant reserve of carbon-saturated energy — a mixture of sand, clay and a viscous low-grade petroleum called bitumen. Pipelines are the best way to get this resource to market, but existing pipelines to the United States are almost full. So tar sands companies, and the Alberta and Canadian governments, are desperately searching for export routes via new pipelines. —The New York Times, 04/02/13 More »

Clinton Urged to Support ‘Robin Hood’ Tax to Fund Climate

Clinton Urged to Support ‘Robin Hood’ Tax to Fund Climate

A transaction levy, or “Robin Hood Tax,” could help fund $100 billion of climate change aid that developed countries have pledged by 2020, and extend to health care and education as well, the 63 groups said in a letter yesterday to Clinton that was e-mailed today by Friends of the Earth. —Bloomberg News, 09/28/12 More »

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