A local battle against toxic chemicals polluting water, soil and air in parts of South Jersey is going to federal court, as multiple lawsuits are being prepared alleging that chemicals emitted by two industrial plants caused birth defects, cancers and other illnesses in dozens of people.
Minamata disease, caused by mercury-tainted water dumped into the sea by chemical maker Chisso Corp, affects the central nervous system. It was initially believed to be communicable, partly because it appeared to spread among family members and neighbors, with birth defects sometimes occurring.
Salt Lake City recently scrapped a plan to use Air Force tanker planes to spray for mosquitos this summer. Now a group of local doctors wants to end all aerial spraying, claiming it does more harm than good.
For one year, the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting periodically sampled for pesticide drift in five locations surrounded by agricultural fields in Central Illinois, where large numbers of corn and soybeans are planted.