Radon: A Killer Without a Conscience

According to the EPA, radon is one of the leading causes of lung cancer in both smokers and non-smokers, attributed to ~21,000 cases of lung cancer-associated deaths, second only to lung cancer deaths caused by smoking alone. Furthermore, the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control states that smokers who are exposed to unsafe levels of radon have a 10 times higher risk for lung cancer. It may be one of the greatest environmental health threats faced in the United States today. To make matters more complicated, it is colorless, odorless, and tasteless: A silent killer.

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David Lewis
The Secret Carbon

Carbon monoxide (CO) is one of the six major air pollutants that are regulated in many parts of the world. It is a colorless, odorless, tasteless, and highly toxic gas that is produced by the burning of fossil fuels, wood, and even tobacco!

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David Lewis
Flooding at the Forefront

Although much of Houston was upgraded in the 1960’s to handle 8 inches of rain over 24 hours, some areas of the City are still only equipped for 4-inch rain events. The current mapped floodplains are shown below. The 100-year floodplain represents those areas having a 1% chance of flooding in any given year. Keep in mind that some of our communities are located in the 100-year floodplain.

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Subsidence, Close to Home

More than 50 years ago, Houston became a textbook example of subsidence due to the cities’ rapid growth, natural lithology and groundwater extraction. Also, large fissures, or openings in the earth were occurring due to processes involved in oil/gas extraction.

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Tier II Reporting Marches Ever Closer

er II Chemical Reporting creates a database of substances that could be considered potentially hazardous to public health. In the event of an emergency at or around a facility, local emergency response can be tailored to the, “quantity, location, and potential hazards” (EPA) of chemicals present. The requirements are mandated under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) and administered, in Texas, through the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ).

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TEXAS: Built Concrete Tough

eady-mix plants generate dust, or particulate matter, primarily from loading and unloading Portland cement. The Clean Air Act of 1970 identified particulate matter as a pollutant of concern, or “criteria pollutant”. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) has a Concrete Batch Plant Standard Permit, which covers plants which operate under certain conditions such as utilizing suction shrouds and baghouse filters to control particulate emissions.

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Thanksgiving Unknown

While we know turkeys are not ‘born’ this way, it sure does create a memorable family moment when this prank goes smoothly. On the other hand, piles and piles of frozen turkeys show up at our local grocery stores like magic! Some stores even give them out for free with a coupon! It is estimated that in the U.S. alone 46 million turkeys are consumed for the Thanksgiving holiday. Many of the turkeys that we consume are only 3 to 6 months of age. So how are turkeys raised for the holiday season?

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