This Week in Environmental News

By Claire Gault

Scott Pruitt was recently approved as the US EPA administrator. During his first public interview, Pruitt questioned the legality of the Clean Power Plan and voiced his support for state authority over environmental regulations. Many environmentalists are concerned that Pruitt will lift most, if not all, emission standards currently in place. The new EPA administrator has previously sued the EPA fourteen times. However, some believe that a hands-off approach might motivate the private sector to take action into their own hands.


China has begun a coal embargo against North Korea, in wake of Kim Jong Un’s missile testing. Many suspect that the death of Kim Jong-nam was the incitor; China had hoped that he (a Chinese ally) would eventually replace Kim Jong Un as leader. His death, combined with North Korea’s growing instability, cause China to finally break ties with the dictatorship. Since China is one of North Korea’s only coal importers, many are worried as to what will happen next.


Although cheap fast food is tempting for a frugal college student, try to resist. Besides the obvious lack of nutrition, many fast food places were recently found guilty of using dangerous perfluorinated chemicals in their packaging. Cancer, liver damage, developmental toxicity, reproductive problems, and immunotoxicity are all associated with consumption of these chemicals. They are also found in textiles, makeup, and furniture. Even “healthier” fast food like Jimmy Johns and Chipotle regularly use perfluorinated chemicals. Yikes.


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