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Friday Finds: Breathing's More Fatal Than Air Crashes


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15 October 2010, 12:39 PM
Bug warfare, cutting prostitution, BPA blues, civil servant car shares
It turns out airplane emissions will kill you before airplane crashes. Photo courtesy of Stock.Xchng

Humans won't fly high on airplane emissions
Good news, aerophobics. New research has found that more people die from plane exhaust than from plane crashes, reports National Geographic. That's because, like car exhaust, plane exhaust is full of toxic pollutants that can cause respiratory diseases like lung cancer, which is why Earthjustice is currently pushing the EPA to address aircraft pollution. Feel better?

Trees get whacked for hiding prostitutes
Local authorities in the Abruzzo region of central Italy plan to cut down trees to help expose and curtail prostitution along the Bonifica del Tronto road, according to the Guardian. The plan would destroy 69 acres of vital ecosystem, not to mention romantic hide-a-ways perfect for canoodling.

NYC zips along in car-sharing program
New Yorkers may soon start seeing NYC's city employees driving around in hybrid Zipcars, according to Grist. Though the program only allows for 25 (mostly hybrid) cars, the measure is expected to save a half a million dollars and keep more cars off the road, which means fewer uncivil servants blocking fire hydrants and parking on sidewalks. Oh, and it will also result in fewer carbon emissions.

Mosquitoes face off in Malaysia
By the end of the year, Malaysia will start releasing genetically modified mosquitoes to eradicate, uh, well, other mosquitoes, according to Wired. The move is intended to combat dengue fever by releasing 2,000 to 3,000 male mosquitoes that have been genetically modified so that their offspring die quickly, but critics argue that the genetic warfare could have unintended consequences.

Canadians can BPA
This week Canada formally announced that bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical widely found in can liners and hard plastics, is a toxic substance, reports the New York Times. The toxic designation is bad news for the industry's leaders, who saw sales of BPA-lined polycarbonate bottles plummet after loads of bad publicity came out about the chemical's toxicity.

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