Lead Stories

Science and the Environment
10:17 am
Tue June 10, 2014

From Genes To Fangs: Snake Venom Recipes Remain Mysterious

Saw-scaled vipers may be small, but they pack a nasty venomous punch. This one, Echis carinatus sochureki, was used in a study on snake venom.
Courtesy of Wolfgang Wüster

Originally published on Wed June 11, 2014 7:46 am

When a saw-scaled viper sinks its fangs into a person, it isn't pretty.

Toxins attack the victim's capillaries. The body launches an immune defense, as it would with an infection. But that takes time — too much time. The venom quickly dissolves the tiny blood vessels, and the body runs out of clotting materials before it can repair them.

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Science and the Environment
9:59 am
Tue June 10, 2014

With Concern For Environment, Illinois Bans Microbeads

Researcher Sherri Mason looks for microbeads in a water sample from Lake Michigan.
Cheryl Corley

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 12:27 pm

Illinois became the first state in the union to ban microbeads, the tiny bits of plastic found in consumer products like skin exfoliants and soap.

As NPR's Cheryl Corley reports, environmentalists say that when microbeads wash down the drain, they're usually missed by filtration systems, which means they become food to fish and other wildlife.

Cheryl filed this report for our Newscast unit:

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Surveillance
9:14 am
Tue June 10, 2014

Drones Approved: FAA Gives OK To First Commercial Use Over Land

A 2011 photo shows an AeroVironment Puma drone being prepared for launch by University of Alaska researchers. The FAA says it approved BP's use of the drone to survey oil fields in Alaska.
Keith Cunningham AP

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 12:24 pm

The Federal Aviation Administration says it has issued the first permit in its history for an unmanned aircraft to fly over U.S. soil. Oil company BP will use a drone from the company AeroVironment to conduct surveys in Alaska.

The first drone flights under the recently issued waiver have already taken place, the FAA says.

From the agency's news release:

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Energy
5:36 pm
Mon June 9, 2014

Tradinghouse Power Plant Demolished, What's Next?

The second boiler at the Tradinghouse power plant site was demolished on June 6, 2014.
Ryland Barton KWBU News

The old Tradinghouse power plant was demolished Friday morning. Luminant owns the plant and property and they have permits to build a new natural gas combustion plant…but they’re waiting for market conditions to improve. With the EPA trying to cut back greenhouse gases, and natural gas production at an all-time high, isn’t this a great time to build a plant? Maybe. 

    

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Texas News
1:44 pm
Mon June 9, 2014

Bloodiest Region In Mexico? Right Across From McAllen, Texas

Originally published on Mon June 9, 2014 4:20 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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