Posted on 16 December 2010.
By Sarah (Steve) Mosko
Special to the Surf City Voice
The simple fact that Americans consume 1500 single-serve water bottles per second made of PET plastic has sufficed to make these disposable bottles a target of environmentalists concerned about the impact of so much trash. Until very recently, however, it has been assumed that the PET bottles pose no direct health risk to humans who drink from them.
New evidence that PET drink bottles can leach substances into the contents that mimic the sex hormone estrogen – phthalates and antimony – has put PET bottles in the crosshairs also of scientists worried about their health safety.
Scientists use the term xenoestrogens to describe foreign chemicals which act like estrogen in animal tissues. There has already been much ado in the media about BPA (bisphenol A), a different potent xenoestrogen found leaching from polycarbonate plastic which is used in many sports bottles and baby bottles. Now widespread in human tissues, BPA has been linked in hundreds of studies to a host of health problems including obesity, diabetes, breast and prostate cancer, infertility and attention deficit disorder.
But water, sodas and sports drinks are all sold in bottles made of PET or polyethylene terephthalate which does not contain BPA, so accumulating evidence that the contents of PET bottles can exhibit estrogenic activity has come as a surprise.
In a review of this topic published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives in 2009, the executive director of the Pennsylvania-based Center for Research in Child and Adolescent Development, Leonard Sax, detailed the evidence that PET plastic is indeed a source of the phthalate and antimony contaminants in the beverages, a conclusion contested by the PET Resin Association which represents the makers of PET in North America. Continue Reading
Posted in Environment
Posted on 16 December 2010.
By John Earl
Surf City Voice
Joe Carchio’s first act as the new mayor of Surf City will be to appoint himself as the city’s representative on the governing boards of four county agencies, giving him a combined salary increase of $15,040, according to a proposal he has submitted to other members of the city council. The increased responsibility and accompanying boost in pay would be a significant although temporary career advancement for Carchio, whose term as the new mayor lasts for one year.
The draft document was leaked to the Surf City Voice by a source at City Hall.
Combined with his mayor’s annual salary of $22,615, Carchio’s potential earnings would reach $37,665 a year, not including regular city provided benefits which last year ranged from $5,380 to $13,984 per city council member, according to Executive Management Salary Benefits Final August 2010 (2).
The mayor appoints representatives to paid positions on the boards of five Orange County government agencies, including: Sanitation District, Vector Control District, Public Cable Television Authority (PCTA), Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) and the West O.C. Water Board (WOCWB) as well as to other non-paid county positions.
Carchio proposes to appoint Councilmember Don Hansen’s protégé, Matt Harper (elected to the council for the first time in November), to SCAG which pays $120 per meeting with a maximum of four meetings per month.
Traditionally the mayor has appointed his/herself to the Sanitation District board. That position pays $170 per meeting with up to six meetings or $1,020 per month. Last year, Mayor Cathy Green appointed herself to the Sanitation District but put other council members on the remaining county agencies that pay their members. Continue Reading
Posted in Uncategorized