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Tuesday, Oct 21st

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'Fracking' Pollution In Water: Pennsylvania Allows Natural Gas Drilling Waste Disposal In Waterways

PA allows fracking waste to pollute waterThe natural gas boom gripping parts of the U.S. has a nasty byproduct: wastewater so salty, and so polluted with metals like barium and strontium, that most states require drillers to get rid of the stuff by injecting it down shafts thousands of feet deep.

Not in Pennsylvania, one of the states at the center of the gas rush. There, the liquid that gushes from gas wells is only partially treated for substances that could be environmentally harmful, then dumped into rivers and streams from which communities get their drinking water.

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More than 1,000 dead birds fall from sky in Ark.

Black birdWildlife officials are trying to determine what caused more than 1,000 black birds to die and fall from the sky over an Arkansas town.

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission said Saturday that it began receiving reports about the dead birds about 11:30 p.m. the previous night. The birds fell over a 1-mile area of Beebe, and an aerial survey indicated that no other dead birds were found outside of that area.

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Fayette Power Project, Coal Plant, Blamed For 'Environmental Catastrophe'

Harvey Hayek stands where his pecan grove once stoodAlong a stretch of Highway 21, in Texas' pastoral Hill Country, is a vegetative wasteland. Trees are barren, or covered in gray, dying foliage and peeling bark. Fallen, dead limbs litter the ground where pecan growers and ranchers have watched trees die slow, agonizing deaths.

Visible above the horizon is what many plant specialists, environmentalists and scientists believe to be the culprit: the Fayette Power Project – a coal-fired power plant for nearly 30 years has operated mostly without equipment designed to decrease emissions of sulfur dioxide, a component of acid rain.

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Will generating ocean energy affect migration of sea creatures?

Do sea creatures have an internal GPS?Without maps or GPS, great white sharks travel thousand of miles roundtrip from California to Hawaii or Australia to South Africa. Sea turtles hatched on the beaches of Florida travel the currents of the North Atlantic Gyre to Europe, Africa and South America before heading home.

And in one of the most mysterious and epic journeys of all, salmon from the streams and rivers of the Pacific Northwest head to sea and swim into the far reaches of the North Pacific before returning to spawn.

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Expect more extreme winters thanks to global warming, say scientists

Expect more extreme wintersScientists have established a link between the cold, snowy winters in Britain and melting sea ice in the Arctic and have warned that long periods of freezing weather are likely to become more frequent in years to come.

An analysis of the ice-free regions of the Arctic Ocean has found that the higher temperatures there caused by global warming, which have melted the sea ice in the summer months, have paradoxically increased the chances of colder winters in Britain and the rest of northern Europe.

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Is Navy plan a threat to world's oldest killer whales?

Newborn killer whaleCould Ruffles and Granny be in trouble? At 59, Ruffles is the oldest known male orca in the world, one of an estimated 150 orcas known to inhabit the Puget Sound and the coast of Washington state. Granny is his 99-year-old mother.

Environmentalists fear for the safety of the whales as the U.S. Navy prepares to expand its operations in its Northwest Training Range Complex, which stretches from the coastline of Washington state to northern California.

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Congress passes bill to help save world's sharks

Congress passes bill to help save sharksCongress on Tuesday passed legislation to better protect sharks, creatures that swam the oceans before the age of dinosaurs but now are being killed by the millions for their fins, a delicacy used in a traditional Chinese soup.

Conservationists called the measure a major step to save a species in trouble. They estimate that 73 million sharks are killed annually to support the shark fin trade, and that 30 percent of the world's species are threatened or nearly threatened with extinction. The loss of too many top predators can disrupt the balance of the populations of other species.

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