#NODAPL The Toxic BTEX Chemicals Flowing Through the Pipeline

I’d written this approximately six and a half years ago on another blog, but it’s entirely relevant here. The toxic stew of chemicals is just as dangerous in the Missouri River / Lake Oahe as the Deepwater Horizon was to the Gulf of Mexico, perhaps more so, since there are 20,000,000 people living downstream, and the water is more concentrated than the Gulf. And the arguments in favor of DAPL echo the Deepwater Horizon – the industry “experts” said they were using state of the art technology and materials. If you’d have listened to their propaganda spewing media whores similar to Chris Berg, you’d have thought everything was perfectly safe. Keep that in mind as you read on …

I don’t know why, but the turtles get to me

A 22 mile long 6 mile wide plume has a bullseye pointed straight at the west coast of Florida and the Keys, along with the sealife there

The cloud was nearing a large underwater canyon whose currents fuel the foodchain in Gulf waters off Florida and could potentially wash the tiny plants and animals that feed larger organisms in a stew of toxic chemicals, another researcher said Friday.

Oh, wait. There’s more

The researchers say they are worried these undersea plumes may be the result of the unprecedented use of chemical dispersants to break up the oil a mile undersea at the site of the leak.

Hollander said the oil they detected has dissolved into the water, and is no longer visible, leading to fears from researchers that the toxicity from the oil and dispersants could pose a big danger to fish larvae and creatures that filter the waters for food.


“There are two elements to it,” Hollander said. “The plume reaching waters on the continental shelf could have a toxic effect on fish larvae, and we also may see a long term response as it cascades up the food web.”

So, what makes crude oil so toxic?

Deborah Blum at scienceblogs tells us about the toxic stew, otherwise known as BTEX

But – and this is not news – oil is also just plain poisonous without any help from dispersants at all. This is why you don’t find people generally lapping up gasoline down at the corner station or setting up petroleum bars where people can grab a quick shot of Sweet Louisiana Crude. So what’s the chemical recipe that makes them so hazardous?


Petroleum experts actually have an acronym for four famously troublesome compounds in crude oil: BTEX. This stands for benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylenes.

Benzene is probably the best known of these compounds, because it’s been flagged as a human carcinogen for a couple decades. I’ve always rather admired the elegant structure of a benzene molecule, which is a beautifully arranged ring of six carbon atoms and six hydrogen atoms:

But while the benzene ring has an elegant structure, the compound itself is considered so dangerous that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has set the maximum permissible level in drinking water at .005 mg/l. The problem with benzene is that it directly damages bone marrow, making it suspect in environmentally induced leukemias. …

She then mentions toluene which is a volatile aromatic hydrocarbon. Toluene is toxic to the nervous system and doesn’t mix well with water which means that it’s hard to wash out once it enters the cells … remember this bit from above?

the toxicity from the oil and dispersants could pose a big danger to fish larvae and creatures that filter the waters for food

She also says ethylbenzene and xylene are also volatile aromatic hydrocarbons. Volatile aromatic hydrocarbons evaporate, and get in the air that – ding, ding, ding – people breathe

In the latest incident, seven workers were hospitalized Wednesday after complaining of nausea, dizziness and headaches, prompting the Coast Guard to order all 125 boats working in the Breton Sound area to return to port as a precaution. Five of the workers were released Thursday, but two remained hospitalized and an investigation was underway to try to determine the cause.

“God knows what kinds of exposures people are getting,” said Edward Overton, a professor of environmental chemistry at Louisiana State University. “There are lots of things in oil that you wouldn’t want to be exposed to.”



Science Friday: Fasting diet ‘regenerates diabetic pancreas’ | Fast food packaging contains chemicals harmful to human health, environment

Fasting diet ‘regenerates diabetic pancreas’

  • 24 February 2017

The pancreas can be triggered to regenerate itself through a type of fasting diet, say US researchers.

Restoring the function of the organ – which helps control blood sugar levels – reversed symptoms of diabetes in animal experiments.

The study, published in the journal Cell, says the diet reboots the body.

Experts said the findings were “potentially very exciting” as they could become a new treatment for the disease.

People are advised not to try this without medical advice.



Fast food packaging contains chemicals harmful to human health, environment

Posted by Kim Krisberg on February 24, 2017

Earlier this month, news broke of a study that found potentially health-harming chemicals in a variety of fast food packaging. Upon hearing such news, the natural inclination is to worry that you’re ingesting those chemicals along with your burger and fries. Study researcher Graham Peaslee says that’s certainly a risk. But perhaps the greater risk, he says, happens after that hamburger wrapper ends up in landfill and the chemicals seep into our environment and water.

The chemicals in question are per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs), which are used to make consumer products nonstick, waterproof and stain-resistant. Think carpets, upholstery and weather-resistant clothing. Previous research has found associations between exposures to PFASs and kidney and testicular cancer, low birth weight, thyroid disease, decreased sperm quality, pregnancy-induced hypertension and immunotoxicity in children. The chemicals have become somewhat ubiquitous too, detected worldwide in water, soil, sediment, wildlife and human blood samples. The study that Peaslee co-authored tested hundreds of fast food packaging samples for fluorine, a marker of PFASs, finding the element in about half of paper wrappers and one-fifth of paperboard samples.



Jordan Chariton Destroys Blatantly Pro DAPL North Dakota “Reporter.” Then, my response to him as well #NODAPL

Chris Berg is a smarmy condescending arrogant former stuck-up jock QB, and one of the former Executive Directors of the State Republican party.

Chris Berg IS North Dakota.

He’s a perfect personification of all those same traits in a significantly large amount of North Dakotans. They will unequivocally tell you that if they were a country they would be the third most powerful country in the world; they will tell you, and believe it from the bottom of their heart, that they live in “God’s Country,” and by extension, are God’s Chosen people. Don’t believe me, spend some time in a bar on a weekend, and listen to the conversations.

I can say these things because I used to be one of them, I’ve lived there. I drank the kool-aid, and believed there was something different and superior, about the people who lived inside of those artificial made-up lines on a map written by DC politicians 140 or so years ago.

But I’ve matured, unlike Chris Berg.

I think we’re all one people, and one humanity. We have a responsibility not only to ourselves and our family, but to our neighbors, whether they’re next door, down the road, downstream of our waterways, or around the world, and to the environment. To paraphrase an old proverb, we don’t inherit the land from our parents, we borrow it from our children.

North Dakotans used to be very proud of leading the nation in being the cleanest, most pollution free state. Rick Berg probably wouldn’t remember this, because he seems like the guy who made his girlfriend do his homework, but former Gov Art Link enacted strict legislation on the energy companies to return the land to it’s former state before any development could take place.

Just about all the people there, used to be friendly and helpful to strangers Now many, if not most, of North Dakotans have changed. They’ve become greedy and spiteful, and have cheered on the police brutality, all in the name of dollar signs.

I have family members who’ve been politicians, and prominent citizens there, and I have to say, from my perspective, the actions of law enforcement and the political establishment have been deplorable and repulsive. Alexander McKenzie would be envious of their tactics (99% of the people reading this have no clue what that means, but the 1% who do, know exactly what I mean)

All of Chris Berg’s arguments/questions are specious and and duplicitous.

I could go on and on about the leaks from the wells, and about explosions from the wells, and pipelines. I could go on about the pipeline rupturing next to the Yellowstone River in Montana, or about the leaks and spills into the Yellowstone and Missouri Rivers near Williston. Or the recent rupture of the Belle Fourche (Bell Foosh) pipeline into Ash Coulee Creek, which btw is a tributary of the Little Missouri, which flows through Theodore Roosevelt National Memorial Park (ironic, because TR was a true conservationist.)

I could go on and on, but riddle me this, Chris Berg, how do you explain away the 6,600 spills from fracking in just four states, as being safe for the environment, to say nothing about the danger to human health?


Science Friday: Proof of evolution that you can find on your own body | Archaeologists find 12th Dead Sea Scrolls cave

Archaeologists find 12th Dead Sea Scrolls cave


The excavation was supported by the Civil Administration of Judea and Samaria, by the Israel Nature and Parks Authority, and the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA), and is a part of the new “Operation Scroll” launched at the IAA by its Director-General, Mr. Israel Hasson, to undertake systematic surveys and to excavate the caves in the Judean Desert.

Excavation of the cave revealed that at one time it contained Dead Sea scrolls. Numerous storage jars and lids from the Second Temple period were found hidden in niches along the walls of the cave and deep inside a long tunnel at its rear. The jars were all broken and their contents removed, and the discovery towards the end of the excavation of a pair of iron pickaxe heads from the 1950s (stored within the tunnel for later use) proves the cave was looted.