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Wildfires a Growing Air Quality Issue

KQED Science | August 26, 2013 | 0 Comments

Wildfires a Growing Air Quality Issue

Major wildfires like California's Rim Fire, near Yosemite, are also long-distance air polluters.

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Who Profits from Proposition 65? (Part Two)

KQED Science | July 7, 2013 | 0 Comments

Who Profits from Proposition 65? (Part Two)

Proposition 65 is enforced by, among others, a small and little-known subculture of "private enforcers," and their attorneys who profit from settlements with businesses found to be in violation of the law. Critics call it a "cottage industry;" others say it's an efficient way to protect consumers from toxic chemicals.

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Who Profits from Proposition 65?  (Part One)

KQED Science | June 29, 2013 | 2 Comments

Who Profits from Proposition 65? (Part One)

Proposition 65 was passed by voters in order to reduce Californian's exposure to toxic chemicals. Now there's an effort in Sacramento to revise the law, amid charges that it's prompted a flood of frivolous lawsuits that make millions of dollars for a select few and cause undue headaches for thousands of California businesses.

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An Environmental Catch-22: Fire Safety Chemicals in Insulation Pose Risks

KQED Science | June 26, 2013 | 8 Comments

An Environmental Catch-22: Fire Safety Chemicals in Insulation Pose Risks

Mounting research questions the safety and effectiveness of flame retardants used in consumer products. The chemicals are also used in the foam plastic insulation that improves energy efficiency in buildings. But a measure that just passed a Senate committee this week could pave the way for fire-safe, energy-efficient buildings without causing harm.

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Breast-Feeding Neanderthals Would Get Top Marks From Today’s Pediatricians

KQED Science | May 22, 2013 | 0 Comments

Breast-Feeding Neanderthals Would Get Top Marks From Today’s Pediatricians

Like all mammals, the Neanderthals breast fed their babies. Scientists wanted to know: For how long? A team of researchers say they’ve answered that question by looking at the fossilized tooth of an eight-year old Neanderthal child discovered in a Belgian cave.

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<a href=http://www.kqed.org/news/story/2013/05/13/120681/teens_science_fair_project_new_diabetes_treatment?category=science target=_blank >Teen's Science Fair Project: New Diabetes Treatment?</a>

KQED News | May 13, 2013

Teen's Science Fair Project: New Diabetes Treatment?

Seven Bay Area students are in Phoenix this week for the world’s largest high school science competition. One sophomore from Walnut Creek was inspired by his grandfather’s Type 1 diabetes. Sixteen-year-old Rohan Savoor said he has always been interested in science, but this is the first time he’s been ...

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<a href=http://science.kqed.org/quest/2013/04/29/air-pollution-lurks-inside-your-home/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=air-pollution-lurks-inside-your-home target=_blank >Air Pollution Lurks Inside Your Home</a>

QUEST | April 29, 2013

Air Pollution Lurks Inside Your Home

Photograph courtesy of kfisto via Creative Commons licensing. How would you like a job that involves shopping at the grocery store with the company credit card and cooking dishes like stir-fry? This describes Tosh Hotchi’s job, but he isn’t a chef. He is ...

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<a href=http://www.kqed.org/news/story/2013/04/25/119940/federal_budget_cuts_hit_lake_berryessa_area?category=science target=_blank >Federal Budget Cuts Hit Lake Berryessa Area</a>

KQED News | April 26, 2013

Federal Budget Cuts Hit Lake Berryessa Area

The battle over the federal budget in Washington, D.C., is taking a toll on rural communities around Lake Berryessa, a popular destination for boating and fishing northeast of Napa. Most of the lake's marinas and recreation sites have been shut down for years after a federal contractor failed in its ...

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<a href=http://science.kqed.org/quest/2013/04/22/two-local-kids-are-semi-finalists-in-a-national-wildlife-art-contest/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=two-local-kids-are-semi-finalists-in-a-national-wildlife-art-contest target=_blank >Two Local Kids Are Semi-Finalists in a National Wildlife Art Contest</a>

QUEST | April 22, 2013

Two Local Kids Are Semi-Finalists in a National Wildlife Art Contest

Two Bay Area kids are semi-finalists in a national art contest celebrating endangered species. First-grader Hannah Chacko, of San Francisco, turned in this colorful drawing of the endangered San Francisco garter snake. (Perhaps a new t-shirt design for the city’s Sharp Park Golf Course?) Foster City’s Kevin Huo, an ...

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<a href=http://www.californiareport.org/archive/R201304191630/c target=_blank >Biotech Braces for Gene Patenting Ruling</a>

The California Report | April 19, 2013

Biotech Braces for Gene Patenting Ruling

California biotech companies had their eye on the U.S. Supreme Court this week as it heard arguments on a key question: can you patent a human gene? The court's ruling could mean millions of dollars to biotech companies and universities. ...

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<a href=http://science.kqed.org/quest/2013/03/08/comets-may-have-delivered-lifes-early-building-blocks/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=comets-may-have-delivered-lifes-early-building-blocks target=_blank >Comets May Have Delivered Life's Early Building Blocks</a>

QUEST | March 8, 2013

Comets May Have Delivered Life's Early Building Blocks

NASA The building blocks of life on Earth may have originated in space. Chemists at the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Hawaii, Manoa have found the complex compounds essential for life can be forged in the vacuum of space. The linked pairs of ...

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<a href=http://science.kqed.org/quest/2013/01/07/think-before-you-drink-grapefruit-juice/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=think-before-you-drink-grapefruit-juice target=_blank >Think Before You Drink Grapefruit Juice</a>

QUEST | January 7, 2013

Think Before You Drink Grapefruit Juice

Image courtesy of dullhunk via Wikimedia Commons You follow the directions on your medication carefully, always taking the pills with the correct frequency and with or without food as directed. But have you discussed with your doctor or pharmacist whether ingesting grapefruit could cause an ...

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<a href=http://science.kqed.org/quest/2012/12/10/top-kqed-science-quest-stories-from-2012/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=top-kqed-science-quest-stories-from-2012 target=_blank >Top KQED Science & QUEST Stories from 2012</a>

QUEST | December 10, 2012

Top KQED Science & QUEST Stories from 2012

From the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta to killer whales, bicycles to cheese — it's been another year of diverse storytelling from the KQED Science and Environment team. Here's a round-up of the top 10 stories shared on our website (based on page views) that you've enjoyed in 2012. Please let us ...

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<a href=http://science.kqed.org/quest/2012/11/28/flame-retardants-redux-from-toxic-couches-to-buildings/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=flame-retardants-redux-from-toxic-couches-to-buildings target=_blank >Flame Retardants, Redux: From Toxic Couches to Buildings</a>

QUEST | November 28, 2012

Flame Retardants, Redux: From Toxic Couches to Buildings

California's flammability standard, which has led to the use of toxic flame retardants in a wide range of consumer products, may finally change under the direction of Gov. Jerry Brown. (Photo: Oscar/Wikimedia Commons) Speaking before a roomful of breast cancer researchers and activists in ...

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<a href=http://science.kqed.org/quest/2012/11/07/tracing-the-origins-of-the-durian%E2%80%99s-stench/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=tracing-the-origins-of-the-durian%25e2%2580%2599s-stench target=_blank >Tracing the Origins of the Durian’s Stench</a>

QUEST | November 7, 2012

Tracing the Origins of the Durian’s Stench

You either love durian or you hate it. This spiky football-shaped fruit is a delicacy in southeast Asia. But some can’t get over its stench, often described as rotten onions or stale vomit. Some Malaysian hotels even ban guests from bringing the fruit into the rooms when it’s in ...

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<a href=http://science.kqed.org/quest/2012/10/31/playing-whack-a-mole-with-flame-retardants/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=playing-whack-a-mole-with-flame-retardants target=_blank >Playing Whack-a-Mole with Flame Retardants</a>

QUEST | October 31, 2012

Playing Whack-a-Mole with Flame Retardants

Emerging research questions whether flame retardants used to meet California's flammability standard increase fire safety. Activists say fire-resistant fabric can protect furniture built to meet industry codes without the use of toxic flame retardants. (Image: Kpahor/Wikipedia) Countless consumer products sold in California contain a flame ...

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<a href=http://science.kqed.org/quest/2012/09/26/creative-use-of-a-cancer-mutation-may-improve-nylon-production/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=creative-use-of-a-cancer-mutation-may-improve-nylon-production target=_blank >Creative Use of a Cancer Mutation May Improve Nylon Production</a>

QUEST | September 26, 2012

Creative Use of a Cancer Mutation May Improve Nylon Production

A cancer-caused mutation in a protein provides clues to improving the production of a chemical used to make nylon. Invented in 1935, nylon found its first use replacing silk in stockings. Supplies of nylon dwindled during World War II as the material was funneled towards making rope, parachutes and mosquito netting. ...

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<a href=http://science.kqed.org/quest/audio/west-coast-a-test-bed-for-ocean-acidification/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=west-coast-a-test-bed-for-ocean-acidification target=_blank >West Coast a Test Bed for Ocean Acidification</a>

QUEST | September 25, 2012

West Coast a Test Bed for Ocean Acidification

West Coast scientists are studying how California mussels might adapt to ocean acidification. This week, scientists from around the world are meeting in Monterey to discuss what they call the “other” climate change problem: the oceans are becoming more acidic. It happens as ...

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<a href=http://science.kqed.org/quest/2012/09/12/h2-whoa-computing-with-water-instead-of-electrons/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=h2-whoa-computing-with-water-instead-of-electrons target=_blank >H2-Whoa: Computing With Water Instead of Electrons</a>

QUEST | September 12, 2012

H2-Whoa: Computing With Water Instead of Electrons

The water repellency of a lotus leaf inspired scientists to recreate this kind of surface in the lab. Credit: Indoloony/Flickr Water and computers usually don’t mix, as anyone who has spilled a coffee on a laptop knows. Now researchers in Finland have used ...

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<a href=http://science.kqed.org/quest/2012/08/29/starbucks-food-waste-fuels-experimental-biorefinery/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=starbucks-food-waste-fuels-experimental-biorefinery target=_blank >Starbucks' Food Waste Fuels Experimental Biorefinery</a>

QUEST | August 29, 2012

Starbucks' Food Waste Fuels Experimental Biorefinery

Leftover pastries and coffee grounds from Starbucks could be turned into precursors to plastic. Credit: Andreanna Moya Photography/Flickr An experimental biorefinery turns spent coffee grounds and old pastries from Starbucks into a building block for plastic. Using food waste as fuel might improve the sustainability ...

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