Friday, January 14, 2005

Water main break leads to boil water advisory

I have been told by my late mom that water must be boiled before drinking it. I just follows without fail. as she said it would kill the bacteria in drinking Water.

Then in 1984. I begin to research into the "I-Medicine Sutra", it explained that the Water in natural form is considered as "Yin", then after boied the "CHI" is become "Yang". Consumming of cold water would upset the "CHI" balance in the body, therefore, if a person after drinking cold water then may have a lots of Gas discharge then, that is exactly the result of the "Cold & Hot Chi" conflict.

So it is a good practise to boil water before one drink, even at the present time.

Water main break leads to boil water advisory
Updated: 1/14/2005 8:12 AM By: Capital News 9 web staff

A water main break this week in Troy has led to a boil water advisory for several public water supplies.

The break occurred early Wednesday morning in the area of First and Polk streets. As a result, the Troy Public Water supply lost pressure, which increases the chance that untreated water and harmful bacteria could enter the system.

The water main has been repaired, and water samples are being collected to monitor the quality of the water.
Capital News 9 Story : Water main break leads to boil water advisory - 1/13/2005 9:11:22 PM

Thursday, January 13, 2005

U.S. Diet Guide Puts Emphasis on Weight Loss - On Drinking Milk

During My Childhood, I used to drink nilk powder presented by the foreign services. Then later in UK I begin to pick up the habit of drinking milk. When I return to Asia. Then I stop drinking Milk again.

You see the issue of drinking milk, it is necessary to look at the contents of milk fat.

There are mixe report about should one drink Low Fat or should one just drinking the Low Fat. My experience & research found that drinking of whole milk would cause people to put on weight. Therefore, I strongly recommend that one should pick the drink of Low Fat Milk.

I still miss those fresh farm milk in Wales!!

U.S. Diet Guide Puts Emphasis on Weight Loss

WASHINGTON Jan. 12 - The federal government issued new dietary guidelines for Americans on Wednesday, and for the first time since the recommendations were introduced in 1980, they emphasize weight loss as well as healthy eating and cardiovascular health.

The guidelines, which follow several years of reports that Americans are fatter than ever, recommend eating many more fruits and vegetables, more low-fat milk, more whole grains and increasing exercise to as much as an hour and a half a day. But some critics question whether they will make any difference in an increasingly fat America.

In announcing the guidelines Wednesday, Ann M. Veneman, the agriculture secretary, and Tommy Thompson, the secretary of health and human services, sounded more like diet gurus than cabinet members. Ms. Veneman said that Americans spent $42 billion a year on diet and health books, indicating the nation's desire to slim down. Mr. Thompson characterized the guidelines as the government's version of a diet book.

"Tonight eat only half the dessert," Mr. Thompson said. "And then go out and walk around the block. And if you are going to watch television get down and do 10 push-ups and 5 sit-ups."

The food industry has already begun to offer more products with whole grains, fewer calories and smaller sizes.

Even critics of government nutrition policies applauded many of the changes, including recommendations that Americans eat less added sugars and less trans fats. But some said they were disappointed that no limits were set for the amount of those substances people should eat.

For example, the guidelines recommend that consumers limit trans fat, partly hydrogenated vegetable oils that have been found to be worse for the body than even saturated fat. But while the advisory committee report that was the basis for guidelines capped intake of trans fat at 1 percent of total calories, that limit was not included in the recommendations.

That was a clear victory for food manufacturers who rely on hydrogenated oils for a variety of processed foods, and who lobbied against the numeric limit. While many companies are eliminating trans fats from their products, the Agriculture Department has estimated that they are in 40 percent of processed foods.

The guidelines were a matter of intense lobbying by industry and advocacy groups over the past year.

The advisory committee, which recommended more dairy products, cited a report, partly financed by the dairy industry, that found that low-fat dairy products helped people lose weight.

After lobbying by the sugar industry, the Department of Health and Human Services helped persuade the World Health Organization in 2003 to eliminate a recommendation that sugar account for no more than 10 percent of calories.

But the final recommendation on sugar in the guidelines is actually a bit stronger than the one in the advisory committee report, which said only to choose carbohydrates wisely. The new guidelines say people should consume foods and beverages with little added sugars.

Dr. Richard Adamson, the vice president of scientific and technical affairs for the American Beverage Association, a trade group, said in an interview Wednesday that there was no proof that people gained weight because they consumed added sugar or lost weight when they cut back. Dr. Adamson said he objected to the guidelines' assertion that studies indicated that beverages with sugar and other caloric sweeteners made people gain weight.

But Dr. Kelly Brownell, director of the Yale Center for Eating and Weight Disorders and a prominent food industry critic, said that over all, he was pleased. "These guidelines are a clear step ahead of where previous ones were," Dr. Brownell said. "The issues on weight control are more specific than in the past, specifically with exercise and the suggestions on limiting added sugars and caloric sweeteners and things like soft drinks."

Still, he said, specific guidelines for sugars and trans fats would have been better.

Among the changes in the guidelines is a call for whole grains to make up half the grains in people's diets, at least three ounces every day. The daily servings of fruits and vegetables rose to nine, from five. The guidelines recommend three cups of low-fat or fat-free dairy products a day, up from two cups.

Saturated fat and cholesterol recommendations remain the same: 10 percent of calories from saturated fat and less than 300 milligrams a day of cholesterol. But while the government previously recommended that fat account for no more than 30 percent of total calories, the current recommendation is a range of from 20 percent to 35 percent.

Maximum levels of sodium have been reduced from 2,400 milligrams a day to 2,300, which is about one teaspoon a day.

Previously, the government recommended a half hour of exercise a day. The new guidelines say that is a minimum and that 60 minutes a day of moderate to vigorous exercise is needed to keep from gaining weight. Sixty to 90 minutes are needed to lose weight. Activities could include walking, bicycling and hiking.

The biggest question is what impact these guidelines will have. They will be used to recreate or replace the food pyramid, the government's graphic depiction of a proper diet. The new version is expected in a month or two.

But whether consumers will use, or even be aware of, the guidelines remains to be seen.

"I don't think many people read them or understand them," Dr. Brownell said, "because the government puts very little muscle into marketing them. If you ask 10 people on the street do they know about this or previous guidelines no one will know anything, but if you ask them what candy melts in your mouth not in your hand, 9 out of 10 will know."

Federal school lunch programs, and other federal food programs, must abide by the guidelines. But Ellen Haas, a former Agriculture Department official, said about 30 percent of the government subsidized lunches at school did not follow government guidelines and were high in fat, salt and sugar.

At the moment the two agencies responsible for the guidelines, the Agriculture Department and the Department of Health and Human Services, have earmarked no money for promotion. Nor have they begun developing partnerships with private industry to disseminate the information in the guidelines. Read More...
The New York Times > Health > U.S. Diet Guide Puts Emphasis on Weight Loss

Do the new Dietary Guidelines need supplements?

This is a good report from USDA, with their calls for balance of Food Diet & plus exercise.

But in the busy life today, how many people really have the time & discipline to getting things in balance??

As the age old recommendations;

Eat More High Fiber Food
More Green Vege
Whole Grans Rice & wheat
Less Meat Especially Red Meat
Less Salt
Less Sugar
Less Fats

Don't eat deep fried food
Balance of 5 color Fruits & Vege

Eat Simple taste for the great health of yours.

Do the new Dietary Guidelines need supplements?
13/01/2005 - The new Dietary Guidelines for Americans were unveiled yesterday. Jess Halliday reports on the role supplements have to play and the guidelines’ wider implications.

Among 41 individual recommendations, the key messages of the new guidelines focused on calorie control and exercise. Consumers are encouraged to choose foods carefully in order to get the most nutrition out of calories consumed.

Foods from every food group should have a part to play in a healthy, balanced diet – in particular fiber-rich foods, vegetables and whole grains.

While recognizing the sound basis of the guidelines, the National Nutritional Foods Association (NNFA) expressed concern that nutritional supplements do not feature prominently enough.

They draw attention to the needs of certain sectors of the community, such as older adults who may need more vitamins B12 or D in their diets. The guidelines do allow for the use of supplements to fill a “nutrient gap” in some cases, but warn that “nutrient needs should be primarily met through consuming foods.”

“When it comes to supplements, these guidelines are more ideal than real. Studies confirm that most Americans don't get adequate nutrition through the foods they eat,” said David Seckman, NNFA's executive director and CEO.

In September 2004 the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN) submitted comments on the draft guidelines urging recognition of the importance of dietary supplements in the final version.

“Not all of our comments are addressed,” CRN president Annette Dickinson told, “but we are pleased to note that the final guidelines do highlight some nutrients that are lacking in people’s diets”.

“They don’t recognize the need for everyone to take a multivitamin, but the bottom line is that if you need an assortment of nutrients one way to get them is through a multivitamin,” she added.

The US is currently in the grip of an obesity epidemic, with almost two thirds of Americans overweight or obese. While the guidelines do seek to aggressively tackle the epidemic, this is not their sole or primary function.

The science-based advice on how a good diet can promote health and reduce the risk of disease is applicable to all people over the age of two years, no matter what their weight.

“Promoting good dietary habits is key to reducing the growing problems of obesity and physical activity, and to gaining the health benefits that come from a nutritionally balanced diet,” said Tommy Thompson, secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Adults should engage in 30 minutes minimum intensity exercise almost every day of the week in order to stave off the risk of chronic disease, increasing to 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise to prevent gradual unhealthy body-weight gain and 60-90 minutes to sustain weight loss.

Dietary guidelines, now in their sixth edition, are drawn up every five years by the HSS and Department of Agriculture (USDA).

“The process we used to develop these recommendations was more rigorous and more transparent than ever before,” said agriculture secretary Ann Veneman.

The three-stage process included a science-based report, comments solicited from agencies and the public and the translation of the guidelines into easy to understand messages for the public and educators.

More than an external public education exercise, the guidelines form the basis of federal food and nutrition education programs. They will underlie the revised Food Guidance System, currently called the Food Guide Pyramid, which is due to be released in the spring.

They also arm health education experts with the latest science-based recommendations.

Cathy Nonas, spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association and registered dietician, told that she was particularly pleased with the advice on fruit and vegetable consumption, that is two cups of fruit and two-and-a-half cups of vegetables each day for a reference 2000-calorie intake increased or reduced depending on the required calorie level.

“Balanced diets and small portions are the most important,” she said. “If you keep to the concept of half your plate in vegetables everything else falls into place.”

As for the impact the guidelines will have on America’s health, she said: “It’s a good message to tell people. It will make people think.”

“It will be interesting to see what well-known food companies and fast food outlets do to follow these guidelines,” she added.

The Grocery Manufacturers Association issued a statement pledging work with the HHS and USDA to promote the dietary guidelines.

“As the companies that make the foods that consumers know, trust and buy everyday, GMA members are developing and introducing new products that will make it easier to meet the recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines,” it said.

“We share the government’s concern about the quantity of saturated and trans fats in the average American diet. Over the past two years, GMA member companies have reduced or eliminated trans fat in countless products.”

In fact, the guidelines do not specify maximum recommended daily trans fat consumption, simply advising “keep trans fat consumption as low as possible”.

Thompson explained that the advice has been left general because the FDA is currently reviewing the recommendation on trans fats. Read More....
Do the new Dietary Guidelines need supplements?

Technology Can Protect Water Supply

That is for sure with the present Computing power & Communications Technology. It is certain that technology could used to analyze the contaminations as well as the huma inplanted poison & toxins with realtime & interactive report.

Technology Can Protect Water Supply
1/11/2005 Oak Ridge, TN --

A technology to instantly determine a poisoned water supply system has been developed at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Researcher Eli Greenbaum said the AquaSentinel system can detect toxins in a municipal water supply by analyzing the condition of the algae it contains.

"Depending upon whether the water is healthy or it has been exposed to poison, the fluorescence signature changes," said Greenbaum of ORNL's Chemical Sciences Division. "It is that change in signature that we use as the detection method for detecting the presence of chemical warfare agents."

Greenbaum noted AquaSentinel can monitor a water supply 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

"The way AquaSentinel works is that based on the fluorescence from the algae that are already in the water, and the fact that the algae already live in the neighborhood of the environment that we are trying to protect, we never run out of biosensors," Greenbaum said.

Source: OakRidge National Laboratory (ORNL)
ORNL is managed by UT-Battelle for the Department of Energy
Water Online News for wastewater professionals

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Water systems' security lapses

Just few days ago, I did share my views about protection of installations like water system & reserviors'... My experience in the past is a good mirror.

You see during the early 70's, the technology is not there to assist the protection on these strategic installations. But today with the Digital & Internet technology, we can use these to be more effective & efficient in enforcing the security to our water system. It is the duty & responsility of the authority concern to enforce it & constance monitor in a close loop that cannot take chance of it.

Water systems' security lapses
Monday, January 10, 2005 Posted: 9:24 PM EST (0224 GMT)

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Water utilities have installed computer-based remote controls "with little attention paid to security," leaving valves, pumps and chemical mixers for water supplies vulnerable to cyber-attack, according to an Environmental Protection Agency report.

In a report Monday, the EPA's inspector general cited costs, lack of ability to check employees' backgrounds and poor communication between technical engineers and management for the shortcomings.

Benjamin Grumbles, EPA's water chief, said Monday he agrees with the report's assessment that there are "a broad range of challenges" facing water utilities, particularly with wireless communications systems, but that his office now has a plan for making improvements.

"We are actively working to provide additional tools to communities to enhance cyber security, providing funding for information that would be placed on a secure web site by the fall, to help utilities be more aware of potential threats to their computer systems," Grumbles said.

His office also is getting help, he said, from the Homeland Security Department on ways of dealing with cyber threats and from an advisory council on how to help utilities measure their improvement.

The computer-based controls were "developed with little attention paid to security, making the security of these systems often weak," the report says. As a result, many of the Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition networks used by water agencies to collect data from sensors and control equipment such as pumps and valves "may be susceptible to attacks and misuse."

The danger is illustrated by an attack on an Australian waste management system in 2000, the report says. An engineer who had worked for the contractor that supplied the remote control equipment for the system used radio telemetry to gain unauthorized access and dump raw sewage into public waterways and the grounds of a hotel.

EPA Inspector General Nikki L. Tinsley urged EPA to find out what is keeping specific water utility operators from making the systems secure, and to develop federal security measures that could be used to correct the problems.

The review by Tinsley's office was suspended after a meeting with Grumbles' office, which agreed to incorporate her concerns into its work.

Tinsley notes that EPA spent $250,000 (euro190,800) in 2002 to pay for research into how to improve security for computerized and automated systems and that Homeland Security began focusing on protections for the networks only last May.

In September, Grumbles told a House Energy subcommittee that the Bush administration had "worked diligently" to improve security of water facilities including 54,000 community drinking water systems and 16,000 public wastewater treatment plants. Read More....
Water systems' security lapses - Jan 10, 2005

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

U.S. Tried to Suppress Pollutant Study, Group Says

This is totally un-called for. Individual who are on the job shall understand that there is a cause & effects in everything that one do.

As a human, one should be aware that beside the individual health is main concern, but one also must have the virtue & love to the others. In the case of Perchlorate, which is harmful to our people, one also need to have the sense of responsibilities to ensure that drinking water must be safe to the people who contribute to the existence. & the Geat Health of their friends & foes on this earth.

U.S. Tried to Suppress Pollutant Study, Group Says

By Maggie Fox, Health and Science Correspondent

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A new report from the National Academy of Sciences raises by 20 times the amount of rocket fuel pollution in drinking water considered "safe," but environmentalists on Monday accused the government of influencing the report's findings.

The environmental group Natural Resources Defense Council challenged the report even before it was issued, saying the authors had been influenced by the Pentagon and defense contractors and it had evidence to prove it.

The pollutant from rocket fuel, a chemical called perchlorate, can affect thyroid function. There are no federal limits on how much is safe but independent groups have said the chemical could affect developing babies.

The Academy's National Research Council, which advises the government on scientific and environmental matters, was asked by the Department of Defense, NASA and other agencies to review evidence that perchlorate in drinking water or food crops was harmful and if so, how much was safe.

Its report says people could drink up to up to 0.0007 milligrams per kilogram of body weight without harming even the most sensitive populations -- about 20 times more than the 'reference dose' proposed by the U.S. Environmental Protection.

"The most recent EPA risk assessment, published in 2002, proposes a daily reference dose of 0.00003 milligrams per kilogram of body weight, which the agency said would correspond to a drinking-water concentration of 1 part per billion based on certain assumptions about body weight and daily water consumption," the Academy noted.

It also said that although there is clear evidence the chemical can dampen thyroid function, leading to a serious condition called hypothyroidism, there was not enough evidence to show it could lead to thyroid cancer, as the EPA has suggested.

"Scientists at the EPA, in state agencies, and in academia have all concluded that very low levels of perchlorate threaten the health of babies," said NRDC scientist Jennifer Sass. "Scientists should not be strong-armed by unqualified, partisan bureaucrats and corporate polluters to skew the evidence."

The NRDC said federal agencies had tried to influence the report's conclusions and published documents that it said showed just how extensive the government's attempts were.

"The Defense Department's job is to protect Americans, not threaten our health, but these documents show that it is conspiring with its contractors and the White House to twist the science and avoid cleaning up a chemical that threatens our children's health," said NRDC lawyer Erik Olson.

"We've never seen such a brazen campaign to pressure the National Academy of Sciences to downplay the hazards of a chemical, but it fits the pattern of this administration manipulating science at the expense of public health," the NRDC said.

White House and EPA officials were not available for comment. Read More....

Science News Article |

Monday, January 10, 2005

Seattle Post-Intelligencer: Report faults DOE's efforts to decommission Hanford wells

When I was little, the family have been using water well as the main source of water supply. Not till 1959, then the family start to have the water piped into our new home then.

I first visit my Late parent's home town in China in 1988. Then my grandma still drinking the Water from the Family well. I was told that our family well have been suppling water to the people within the village on the island for nearly thousand year.

Then in 1992, I returned to the island again, I was told that the well have been sealed by the county government because of contamination. Really it is sad to knew these. I would like to see that the well contaminations need to be checked constantly & once it have to enforce the decommission, it need to be carried out without fail!! for the Great Health of our human kind.

Report faults DOE's efforts to decommission Hanford wells

YAKIMA, Wash. -- The U.S. Department of Energy has been too slow to decommission abandoned and unused wells at south-central Washington's Hanford nuclear site, a new federal audit concludes.

Thousands of wells have been drilled at Hanford to monitor the release of contaminants to groundwater during decades of plutonium production for the nation's nuclear weapons arsenal. Many of the wells have been abandoned and could pose a threat to the environment as a potential travel source for contaminants to groundwater and the nearby Columbia River.

State law requires unused and abandoned wells to be decommissioned. But the Energy Department has not decommissioned those wells at Hanford in a timely manner, leaving the agency open to potential enforcement actions by the state, the Energy Department's Office of Inspector General concluded in an audit released Thursday.

The audit recommends that the Energy Department conduct a complete inventory, verify the status of all wells at Hanford, and perform a comprehensive risk assessment of them. The agency should then develop a plan to decommission wells and allocate money to implement that plan.

The Energy Department agreed to take those steps in a Dec. 9 letter by Paul Golan, acting assistant secretary for environmental management, in response to a draft of the audit.

Of the approximately 7,000 wells at Hanford, the report estimates that as many as 3,500 are unused and must be decommissioned as soon as possible.

The Energy Department estimated the total number of wells to be decommissioned at the site as 2,150, based on a 2002 plan for accelerated cleanup at Hanford. Auditors, however, increased that number based on more recent data from 2003 and 2004, the report said.

The agency had planned to decommission 520 wells by the end of 2006, but about 33 percent of the 133 wells identified for decommissioning in 2004 were not completed, according to the report.

Energy Department officials also said a lack of money had limited their ability to speed the process. The audit did not dispute that assertion, but concluded that the lack of a risk-based schedule for the work likely contributed to reduced funding.

The Energy Department has estimated that 80 square miles of Hanford's groundwater have been contaminated at levels exceeding state and federal drinking water standards. An estimated 442 billion gallons of radioactive and hazardous waste have been released into the ground at the site.

Last year, the Inspector General reported that the Energy Department had failed to make significant progress to remediate Hanford's contaminated groundwater and that pump-and-treat systems installed for that purpose had been largely ineffective.

Those systems call for workers to pump contaminated water out of the ground, run it through filters to remove radioactive contaminants and re-inject the water into the ground. Read More.....
Seattle Post-Intelligencer: Report faults DOE's efforts to decommission Hanford wells

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