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Fat, unhealthy Americans threaten Trump’s defense surge

Rising obesity numbers, drug use, criminal backgrounds and other problems mean most people at prime military recruiting age are ineligible to serve.

This might seem to be an odd story to include in a stream about environmental health, until you consider the science that has emerged over the last two decades about how chemical exposures can contribute to obesity, diabetes and neurological developmental disorders like ADHD, autism, impaired cognitive function, lower IQ, etc. Getting control of these exposures becomes a national security imperative.

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Credit: WWF Malaysia/William Joseph
Children

Balancing palm oil and protected forests to conserve orangutans

Orangutan populations have decreased in fragmented forest areas near palm oil plantations, but they have remained fairly stable in protected forests, giving conservationists some hope for the species' future amid continued decline, according to a new study.

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Corals in American Samoa region that survived a 2015 bleaching event. (Credit: Stephen Palumbi)
Originals

“A friend is gone:” Handpicking hardy corals to save them from warming waters

When Steve Palumbi and a group of scientists arrived in American Samoa in 2017, they saw a grim scene. Acropora hyacinthus, a charismatic coral shaped like large plates, was dying out.

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Wil C. Fry/flickr
Toxics

Widely used PVC plastic chemical spurs obesity, prediabetes: Study

Mice exposed in the womb to a chemical used in PVC plastic, door and window frames, blinds, water pipes, and medical devices were more likely to suffer from prediabetes and obesity, according to a study released this week.

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