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Toxic Environment Movies
Endorsed by Sioux Falls Scientists

Sioux Falls Scientists recommends the following documentaries that describe the toxic environment in which we now live. The movies described here are hard to classify. It's a mixed bag. Communities struggling to keep a decent environment to live in but needing employment that conflicts with that desire. Again we find major Corporations (Ford) ignoring the property rights of people living in America (so what, they are Indians living on Indian land). Second class citizens at best. Again we see the water supply taking second place to urban development, and we see the leveling of mountains to get coal, one of the major contributors to global warming. Isn't that just great. Again as always it's about the Money! All other priorities rescinded, including the health and wellbeing of the people.

The movies are all available from Amazon.com but you are free to obtain them from many other sources. Amazon offers them on their website along with many alternate sources, often less expensive. Many are probably also available on NetFlix.com and elsewhere for on-line viewing. You are free to choose whatever source you please. The movie links on the following pages point to the movie location at Amazon.

Sioux Falls Scientists describe seven "toxic environment" documentaries and one novel on the following 8 pages:

10-19-16 US air force base leaks toxic chemicals into sewer system
US air force base leaks toxic chemicals into sewer system
An air base in the US state of Colorado says it has accidentally released 150,000 gallons of toxic contaminated water into the sewer system of the nearby city of Colorado Springs. Peterson Air Force base said the water contained perfluorinated compounds or PFCs, a component of firefighting foam. It did not say how high the levels of chemicals were. A spokesman said the spillage did not affect the city's drinking water supply but was discharged into a creek.

9-17-16 Florida sinkhole causes huge waste water leak into aquifer
Florida sinkhole causes huge waste water leak into aquifer
About 980 million litres of contaminated water have leaked into Florida's main underground source of drinking water, state officials say. The leak occurred after a huge sinkhole opened up under a phosphate fertiliser plant near Tampa, damaging the stack where waste water was stored. The water contained phosphogypsum, a slightly radioactive by-product from the production of fertiliser. The phosphate company Mosaic said the leak posed no risk to the public. It added the contaminated water had not reached private supplies and the firm was recovering it using pumps. "Groundwater moves very slowly," senior Mosaic official David Jellerson was quoted as saying by the Associated Press news agency. However, Jacki Lopez, Florida director of the Center for Biological Diversity, told Reuters news agency: "It's hard to trust them when they say 'Don't worry,' when they've been keeping it secret for three weeks."

9-16-16 Air pollution and Alzheimer’s
Air pollution and Alzheimer’s
Breathing air polluted by traffic fumes may be harmful not only to your heart and lungs but also to your brain. In a new study, researchers discovered millions of tiny particles of magnetite, an iron oxide, in samples of brain tissue from people who had lived in busy cities. Magnetite nanoparticles that occur naturally in the brain are angular in shape, but the vast majority of these particles were round—indicating they formed from the burning of fuel at high temperatures. These pollution-derived particles can generate unstable molecules, which can be harmful to other, more important molecules. In high concentrations, they have been linked to Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases.

9-14-16 Our water is full of drugs and we don’t know their effects
Our water is full of drugs and we don’t know their effects
Water reuse means we are all consuming a cocktail of other people's leftover medicines, but measuring their impact is almost impossible. It's time we clean up our act. PICK up a glass, fill it from the tap and take a sip. You have just had a tiny dose of the pill your neighbour took days before. Excreted and flushed through our sewage works and waterways, drug molecules are all around us. A recent analysis of streams in the US detected an entire pharmacy: diabetic meds, muscle relaxants, opioids, antibiotics, antidepressants and more. Drugs have even been found in crops irrigated by treated waste water. The amounts that end up in your glass are minuscule, and won’t lay you low tomorrow. However, someone prescribed multiple drugs is more likely to experience side effects, and risks rise exponentially with each drug taken by a person over 65. So could tiny doses of dozens of drugs have an impact on your health? “We don’t know what it means if you have a lifelong uptake of drugs at very low concentrations,” says Klaus Kümmerer at the University of Lüneburg, Germany. “These drugs have been individually approved, but we haven’t studied what it means when they’re together in the same soup,” says Mae Wu at the National Resources Defense Council, a US advocacy group.

9-12-16 Russia's Norilsk Nickel admits 'red river' responsibility
Russia's Norilsk Nickel admits 'red river' responsibility
The world's biggest nickel producer has admitted a spillage at one of its plants was responsible for a river in the Russian Arctic turning blood-red. Norilsk Nickel says that heavy rains on 5 September caused a "filtration dam" at its Nadezhda plant to overflow into the Daldykan river. However, it says there is no danger to people or wildlife. The company had flatly denied it was responsible when images of the red river near Norilsk emerged last week.(Webmaster's comment: No Danger? They are still lying! That's what all polluters do!)

9-9-16 Myth busted: dumped pills aren’t main source of drugs in sewage
Myth busted: dumped pills aren’t main source of drugs in sewage
Waste water tests show the pharmaceuticals they contain are mainly excreted, suggesting that more expensive treatment may be needed to deal with them. The next time you pick up a prescription, you might notice a message on the label exhorting you not to flush leftover pills down the toilet. This advice reflects the official belief in some countries, including that dumping medicines down the toilet is the number one source of pharmaceutical contamination in waste water. The trouble is, it’s not true. “We’re not sure where this urban myth came from,” says Patrick Phillips at the US Geological Survey (USGS) in Troy, New York. Phillips’s latest work, together with Christine Vatovec at the University of Vermont and colleagues, seems to well and truly bust the myth. It also reveals some surprising sewer epidemiology. Why is it important to know the provenance of pharmaceuticals in waste water? They, and the compounds that result from mixing them, are becoming “chemicals of concern” – and only 50 per cent gets filtered out by treatment plants. The other 50 per cent could potentially end up in your drinking water.

9-8-16 Red river near Arctic nickel plant examined by inspectors
Red river near Arctic nickel plant examined by inspectors
The defence ministry channel Zvezda TV shows the red river on its website. Russian environmental inspectors are trying to establish why a river near the Norilsk Nickel industrial complex in the Arctic has turned blood-red. Dramatic pictures of the discoloured Daldykan river have been posted widely on Russian media. The government daily Rossiiskaya Gazeta says a leaking slurry pipeline carrying waste copper-nickel concentrate could be to blame. Norilsk Nickel is the world's largest nickel and palladium producer. Its vast furnaces were built on the Taimyr Peninsula, in the Krasnoyarsk region of Siberia, in the Soviet era. The mining group has a production facility called Nadezhda by the Daldykan river. But company officials said they were not aware of any river pollution from the plant.

9-6-16 Pollution particles 'get into brain'
Pollution particles 'get into brain'
Tiny particles of pollution have been discovered inside samples of brain tissue, according to new research. Suspected of toxicity, the particles of iron oxide could conceivably contribute to diseases like Alzheimer's - though evidence for this is lacking. The finding - described as "dreadfully shocking" by the researchers - raises a host of new questions about the health risks of air pollution. Many studies have focused on the impact of dirty air on the lungs and heart. Now this new research provides the first evidence that minute particles of what is called magnetite, which can be derived from pollution, can find their way into the brain. Earlier this year the World Health Organisation warned that air pollution was leading to as many as three million premature deaths every year.

9-5-16 Air pollution is sending tiny magnetic particles into your brain
Air pollution is sending tiny magnetic particles into your brain
Iron nanoparticles in our brains may contribute to Alzheimer’s disease and we finally know where they come from – air pollution from traffic fumes. Traffic fumes go to your head. Tiny specks of metal in exhaust gases seem to fly up our noses and travel into our brains, where they may contribute to Alzheimer’s disease. Iron nanoparticles were already known to be present in the brain – but they were thought to come from the iron naturally found in our bodies, derived from food. Now a closer look at their structure suggests the particles mostly come from air pollution sources, like traffic fumes and coal burning. The findings are a smoking gun, says Barbara Maher of Lancaster University in the UK. Iron is present harmlessly in our bodies in different forms, as it is part of many biological molecules. But the form known as magnetite, or iron oxide, which is highly reactive and magnetic, has been implicated in Alzheimer’s disease.

9-5-16 Top tips to avoid getting metal pollution in your brain
Top tips to avoid getting metal pollution in your brain
After discovering potentially harmful metal particles in our brains seem to come from traffic fumes, a researcher has changed how she travels to avoid them. Barbara Maher at Lancaster University in the UK has found that tiny particles of iron oxide in our brains probably come from the traffic fumes we breathe. These magnetic particles have been linked to Alzheimer’s disease, and are thought to generate reactive compounds that can kill nerve cells. We have known for some time that there are magnetite particles in our brains, but until now, it was thought that they came from natural sources. Maher’s team found that the particles are mostly round in shape – a structure that suggests they form when fuel is burned, and may then get into the nerves in our noses when we breathe fumes in. “Because magnetite is known to be so toxic to the brain, it makes you see the atmosphere you’re breathing in in a different light,” says Maher. She has now made changes to her lifestyle to avoid breathing in too many nanoparticles. “These findings are sufficiently alarming for me to alter my behaviour,” she says. “If I’m walking in a really busy street, I walk as far from the kerbside as I can. The concentration of particulate matter drops even across the pavement’s width.”

9-1-16 How lead poisoning wreaks havoc on American education
How lead poisoning wreaks havoc on American education
This might be the most underreported issue in school reform. Lead was thought to be a solved problem for quite some time, since leaded gasoline and paint were both phased out in the 1990s. It has come back in view due to the water crisis in Flint, Michigan (which isn't remotely resolved, by the way) — but still in a limited way. That ongoing disaster rather makes it appear as though lead poisoning is mainly an issue for crumbling Rust Belt cities with severe economic problems. This is not the case. As Julia Lurie points out, data collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that lead contamination is a serious issue all over the country. Only about half of states even report lead data from children's blood samples, but those that do show many counties with serious lead contamination — naturally those with high poverty and/or high minority populations. And as a new NBER working paper demonstrates, even very small amounts of lead appear to have negative effects on children's education. The study looked at data from Rhode Island, where very thorough lead testing data allowed them to control for many confounding factors.

8-31-16 Our air pollution problem is killing us
Our air pollution problem is killing us
Annual premature deaths from poor air quality are estimated to rise from three million today to 4.5 million by 2040 if steps aren't taken to reform global energy combustion, according to a recent report by the International Energy Agency. Air quality is the fourth-largest threat to human health, after high blood pressure, poor diet, and smoking. As many as 18,000 people die each day from air quality-related health problems, including lung disease, asthma, tuberculosis, and throat cancer. And each year, the number of air pollution-related deaths outnumber deaths caused by HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and road injuries combined. If the global energy sector were to increase clean energy investment by 7 percent — or $4.7 trillion — by 2040, premature deaths caused by outdoor air pollution could fall from 4.5 million to 2.8 million a year, the report states.Investing in better access to clean cooking stoves, tighter emissions controls on the global power sector, renewable energy, urban planning, and public transportation could decrease global energy demand by as much as 13 percent by 2040. Currently, just 8 percent of the world's energy production is entirely combustion-free.

7-23-16 The dangerous link between air pollution and mental illness
The dangerous link between air pollution and mental illness
A growing body of research connects poor air quality to a host of mental and physical illnesses among all age groups. Even low levels of air pollution may put children at higher risk for developing a mental illness, according to a recent study out of Sweden — the first of its kind to examine the effects of poor air quality on such a young cohort. Standards set by the European Union and the World Health Organization, for example, cap yearly mean nitrogen dioxide levels — a chemical produced by motor vehicle exhaust and part of the pollutant cocktail that creates smog — at around 40 µg/m3 (micrograms per cubic meter). In Sweden, researchers noted a 9 percent increase in child mental illness for every 10 microgram-per-cubic-meter increase of nitrogen dioxide released into the air. Their findings, published in the journal BMJ Open, show that incremental hikes in air pollution can still negatively affect mental health. "The severe impact of child and adolescent mental health problems on society, together with the plausible and preventable association of exposure to air pollution, deserves special attention," the authors write.

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Toxic Environment Movies
Endorsed by Sioux Falls Scientists