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Category Archives: Government Documents

Do you live close enough to a small US airport to have lead exposure? Check our maps

Quartz – At in the heart of Silicon Valley filled up their tanks with a heavy metal most Americans assumed was banished long ago: lead. Reid-Hillview was not unusual in this respect. Virtually every small airplane in the US burns fuel containing tetraethyl lead (TEL), an additive introduced in the 1920s to boost octane levels. It’s so toxic, a splash on the skin can be lethal. But in January, Santa Clara County, which owns Reid-Hillview, imposed the first ban in the US on refueling with leaded aviation gas, sparking a fight with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and forcing some plane owners to refuel their airplanes elsewhere. County officials have since reaffirmed the ban, and now other airports are considering following suit. Prompted by scientific research showing higher than average lead levels in children living near Reid-Hillview, Quartz has done the first investigation combining lead emissions data at the country’s top civil aviation airports with flight paths for small, piston-engine aircraft over affected neighborhoods. The analysis of over 350 million aircraft locations from planes taking off and landing in the US shows the extent to which lead-fuel burning aircraft regularly expose homes, parks, schools, and playgrounds across the country. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates 16 million people—and 3 million children—live within a kilometer of these airports…”

Vatican releases thousands of Holocaust-era letters and requests online

Times of Israel: “Pope Francis orders the online publication of 170 volumes of its Jewish files from the recently opened Pope Pius XII archives, the Vatican announces, amid renewed debate about the legacy of its World War II-era pope. The documentation contains 2,700 files of requests for Vatican help from Jewish groups and families, many… Continue Reading

International Attitudes Toward the U.S., NATO and Russia in a Time of Crisis

“Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has brought war to Europe at a scale unseen since the 1940s. In response, the United States and its NATO allies have supplied Ukrainian defense forces with weapons and training, while millions of refugees have fled into neighboring countries. The war has been the center of international attention for months, and… Continue Reading

Tools and Strategies for Pollinator Protection

EPA – “There are many ways to minimize the exposure of bees and other pollinators to pesticides. This page describes some pollinator protection strategies used at the local, state, and federal level to preserve pollinators and their habitats. These strategies include Best Management Practices (BMPs), Managed Pollinator Protection Plans (MP3s), and mitigation measures to reduce… Continue Reading

Bipartisan Safer Communities Act

Senator Chris Murphy: “Following agreement between U.S. Senators Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) on legislative text that will allow the Senate to vote to end a three decades long logjam on gun safety legislation, Murphy released the following statement: “For decades, the anti-gun violence movement has been… Continue Reading

Study – Google search results for abortion services are leading users to ‘fake clinics’

Inside Daily Brief: “Congressional Democrats have sent a letter to Google encouraging the search engine to improve its results for users seeking abortions. The letter follows a study from the Center for Countering Digital Hate which found that 11% of abortion searches in states with “trigger laws” – states which will automatically ban abortion if the… Continue Reading

Compiling Congressional Districts

Via Center for Data Innovation – Grossmann, M., Lucas, C., McCrain, J, & Ostrander, I. (2022). CongressData. East Lansing, MI: Institute for Public Policy and Social Research (IPPSR) – “Researchers at Michigan State University have created a dataset tracking the history of U.S. congressional districts. The dataset consists of congressional districts from 1789 to 2021… Continue Reading

Warren, Wyden, Murray, Whitehouse, Sanders Introduce Legislation to Ban Data Brokers from Selling Americans’ Location and Health Data

Bill Text (PDF) | One-Pager (PDF) – “United States Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) introduced the Health and Location Data Protection Act, legislation that bans data brokers from selling some of the most sensitive data available about everyday Americans: their health and location data. The legislation is cosponsored by Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Chair of the… Continue Reading

What the TSA could teach Congress about gun control

Recode – “TSA PreCheck uses enhanced background checks to make everyone safer. With the country continually in mourning over gun violence — we keep seeing mass shooting after mass shooting after mass shooting — it’s time to find ways to prevent it, lest we remain the “only nation where this regularly happens.” Those solutions needn’t be… Continue Reading

Private Data/Public Regulation

Friedman, Barry, Private Data/Public Regulation (May 13, 2022). NSTL 2105 Hoover (2021), NYU School of Law, Public Law Research Paper Forthcoming, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4117794 “This article argues that, as a matter of constitutional law, government agencies that engage in policing cannot collect digital data, particularly about individuals for whom there is no suspicion of… Continue Reading

Long-Term Decline in US Abortions Reverses, Showing Rising Need for Abortion as Supreme Court Is Poised to Overturn Roe v. Wade

“The long-term decline in abortions in the United States that started 30 years ago has reversed, according to new data from the Guttmacher Institute — [see also supplemental data tables] underscoring that the need for abortion care in the United States is growing just as the US Supreme Court appears likely to overturn or gut… Continue Reading

The 2022 Code of Practice on Disinformation

European Commission: “Major online platforms, emerging and specialised platforms, players in the advertising industry, fact-checkers, research and civil society organisations delivered a strengthened Code of Practice on Disinformation following the Commission’s Guidance of May 2021. The strengthened Code of Practice on Disinformation has been signed and presented on the 16 June 2022 by 34 signatories who… Continue Reading