April 18, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - The British and French governments have asked the United Nations to investigate what they believe is credible evidence that the Syrian regime has used small amounts of chemical weapons in recent months, officials said Thursday. The evidence, including soil samples and witness testimony, is not definitive. But the indications are such that "we are pressing the United Nations to investigate further and raising our concerns with international partners," said a British diplomat who requested anonymity in addressing a sensitive matter.
April 18, 2013 |
The blast at a West, Texas, fertilizer plant on Wednesday night was so massive that investigators believe it probably involved a significant amount of ammonium nitrate, a chemical that some scientists say should be regulated as an explosive. In a report filed with the Texas Department of State Health Services on Feb. 26, West Fertilizer Co. said that it had up to 270 tons of ammonium nitrate at its facility, along with up to 100,000 pounds of liquid ammonia. The exact amounts on hand at the plant are not yet known, officials said.
April 18, 2013 |
WASHINGTON -- The British and French governments have asked the United Nations to investigate what they believe is credible evidence that the Syrian regime has used small amounts of chemical weapons in recent months, officials said. The evidence, including soil samples and witness testimony, is not definitive. But the concerns are such that “we are pressing the United Nations to investigate further and raising our concerns with international partners,” said a British diplomat who declined to be named in speaking about a sensitive matter.
April 17, 2013 |
A bill that would deter small-business shakedowns for Proposition 65 signage violations has been approved by a state Assembly committee. AB 227 would give business owners who violate the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act 14 days to comply without facing steep fines. Prop. 65, passed in 1986, requires establishments to warn customers that they could be exposed to certain chemicals such as alcohol. Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Los Angeles) introduced the bill after he was told by small-business owners that the law is easily abused by lawyers who file claims in the hopes of extracting settlements.
April 12, 2013 |
California's environmental science agency has added the controversial plastics-softening chemical, bisphenol A, to its official list of chemicals known to cause birth defects. The decision was announced late Thursday by the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. The agency based its finding on a report by "an authoritative body," the National Toxicology Program, that the compound commonly known as BPA "causes reproductive toxicity...at high doses. " Quiz: How well do you remember 2012?
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 27, 2013 |
A toxic waste dump near the San Joaquin Valley farming community of Kettleman City has agreed to pay $311,000 in fines for failing to report 72 hazardous materials spills over the last four years, the California Department of Toxic Substances Control announced Wednesday. Brian Johnson, the department's deputy director of enforcement, described the fines as "a substantial and aggressive penalty. " The penalties were part of a settlement that capped an investigation into the Chemical Waste Management facility, the only one in California licensed to accept polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, a carcinogen.
March 23, 2013 |
My Chemical Romance has broken up. Following a decade-plus run in which it ascended from the emo-punk underground to platinum-plated pop stardom, the New Jersey band announced its dissolution Friday night in a statement posted on its website . "Being in this band for the past 12 years has been a true blessing," it wrote. "We've gotten to go places we never knew we could. We've been able to see and experience things we never imagined possible. We've shared the stage with people we admire, people we look up to, and best of all, our friends.
March 21, 2013 |
BEIRUT - The strange case of an alleged chemical attack in Syria has taken some odd turns. Like so many other mass-casualty attacks in Syria, the alleged poison-gas strike Tuesday in northern Syria has become a case of each side in the conflict blaming the other - and counting on foreign allies to back their version of events, even if the facts seem blurry at best. Still unanswered amid the barrage of rhetoric are the fundamental questions: Was there a chemical attack? And, if so, who was behind it?
March 19, 2013 |
BEIRUT - The Syrian government accused rebels Tuesday of killing dozens of civilians in a chemical attack near the northern city of Aleppo, the first allegation of such a devastating chemical strike during the more than two-year conflict. The opposition vehemently denied the claim and charged that the government of President Bashar Assad was behind the attack. The report of a chemical assault injects an explosive new issue into the international debate about how to deal with the escalating violence in Syria, where tens of thousands have died and aid experts have warned of a looming humanitarian catastrophe.
March 19, 2013 |
BEIRUT -- The United States and Russia stood behind their respective allies Tuesday as each side in the Syrian conflict accused the other of launching a devastating chemical attack outside the northern city of Aleppo. Washington has backed the ouster of Syrian President Bashar Assad, and Moscow has long resisted opposition efforts to topple Assad, its longtime ally. The chasm between the two world powers was again readily apparent after conflicting accounts emerged about the alleged deployment of chemical weapons.