Saturday, October 29, 2016

Partisan Political Activities and Federal Workers: Questions in the 2016 Election

"As Election Day nears, interest in the Hatch Act’s regulation of government employees’ political activities peaks, with a number of issues raising congressional interest. Are federal officials permitted to appear with candidates for partisan political election at public events? Can federal entities endorse a candidate for partisan political election? The following Q&A addresses the issues implicated by these questions.

How does the Hatch Act regulate federal employees’ ability to engage in the political process? 

Federal law, commonly known as “the Hatch Act,” has regulated federal executive branch employees’ participation in partisan political activities for over a century. Although it originally applied a broad ban on all voluntary, outside activities in politics, subsequent amendments in 1993 and 2012 have allowed most federal employees to engage in a wide range of voluntary, partisan political activities in their time off-duty, away from their federal jobs, and off any federal premises. Some strict limitations still apply, however, to employees of certain designated agencies (e.g., certain law enforcement and national security agencies)..."
Political activities and federal workers

Friday, October 28, 2016

Freedom of Information Act Electronic Reading Room

"The declassified President’s Daily Briefs (PDBs) from the Nixon and Ford presidential administrations in this collection include about 2,500 documents and 28,000 pages. As part of this release, CIA held a symposium, "The President's Daily Brief: Delivering Intelligence to Nixon and Ford, " at the Richard Nixon Presidential Library in Yorba Linda, CA on 24 August 2016. The PDBs contain the highest level of intelligence on the president’s key national security issues and concerns. These documents were the primary vehicle for summarizing the day-to-day sensitive intelligence and analysis, as well as late-breaking reports, for the White House. As part of this declassification effort, the President’s Intelligence Checklists (or PICLs, pronounced “pickles”) and PDBs delivered to Presidents Kennedy and Johnson – some 2,500 documents and 19,000 pages – were released for the first time on 16 September 2015. The two collections show that the product was tailored – both in content and format – to the requirements of each president. President Richard Nixon, as a once practicing attorney, preferred to review the PDBs on longer legal size paper, and this format was carried into the Ford administration. Both collections were assembled as part of the CIA’s Historical Review Program, which identifies, reviews, and declassifies documents on historically significant events or topics..."
CIA's Freedom of Information

The World Factbook: 2016

"he World Factbook provides information on the history, people, government, economy, geography, communications, transportation, military, and transnational issues for 267 world entities. Our Reference tab includes: maps of the major world regions, as well as Flags of the World, a Physical Map of the World, a Political Map of the World, a World Oceans map, and a Standard Time Zones of the World map..."
World Factbook

Opioid addiction: Laws, Regulations, and Other Factors Can Affect Medication-Assisted Treatment Access

"The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has stated that addressing opioid abuse is a high priority and is promoting access to medicationassisted treatment (MAT)—an approach that combines behavioral therapy and the use of medications—to combat the problem. Three medications are currently approved for use in MAT for opioid addiction—methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone. Methadone and buprenorphine are regulated like other controlled substances under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) when used to treat pain and have additional requirements that apply when used to treat opioid addiction. The third medication—naltrexone—is not a controlled substance and is therefore not subject to the CSA. Methadone is a Schedule II controlled substance, which indicates a higher risk of abuse. Buprenorphine is a Schedule III controlled substance, with lower risk, and so generally has fewer requirements. For example, when used to treat pain, methadone generally may not be dispensed without a written or electronic prescription. In contrast, buprenorphine may be dispensed based on a written, electronic, or oral (phone) prescription. When used for opioid addiction treatment, the CSA and implementing regulations impose additional requirements for methadone and buprenorphine:
 • Methadone may generally only be administered or dispensed within an opioid treatment program (OTP), as prescriptions for methadone cannot be issued when used for opioid addiction treatment.
 • Buprenorphine may be administered or dispensed within an OTP and may also be prescribed by a qualifying practitioner who has received a waiver from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Practitioners who received this waiver are limited in the number of patients they may treat for opioid addiction..."
Opioid addiction

Electorate Profiles: Selected Characteristics of the Citizen, 18 and Older Populatio

"The following tables present estimates of the citizen, 18 and older population for all states and congressional districts. Selected characteristics include age, sex, race, Hispanic Origin, educational attainment, poverty status, and household income. The data used in these tables come from the 2015 American Community Survey (ACS). For general background on the ACS, please visit http://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/. For information on the statistical accuracy of the ACS, please visit http://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/technical- documentation/code-lists.html..."
Electorate profiles

USDA Invests $1.7 Billion to Protect Sensitive Agricultural Lands through Conservation Reserve Program

"The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will issue nearly $1.7 billion in payments to more than half of a million Americans who have contracts with the government to protect sensitive agricultural lands. The investment, part of the voluntary USDA Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), will allow producers to protect almost 24 million acres of wetlands, grasslands and wildlife habitat in 2016.
CRP provides financial assistance to farmers and ranchers who remove environmentally sensitive land from production to be planted with certain grasses, shrubs and trees that improve water quality, prevent soil erosion, and increase wildlife habitat. In return for enrolling in CRP, USDA, through the Farm Service Agency (FSA), provides participants with rental payments and cost-share assistance. Landowners enter into contracts that last between 10 and 15 years..."

Agricultural land conservation

Window covering cords: kids and cords don't mix

"October is Window Covering Safety Month!
Nearly one child a month dies after becoming entangled in a window-covering cord. Considered one of the top hidden dangers in the home, accessible window covering cords pose a deadly strangulation hazard to young children nationwide.
Action leads to prevention.
First, read below about the hazard and CPSC’s recommended safety tips. Then purchase and install cordless window coverings or window coverings with inaccessible cords in homes and buildings where children live or visit. And finally, share [link to share window covering info center] this lifesaving information with others..."
Window covering cords

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Legal Processes for Contesting the Results of a Presidential Election

"Questions occasionally surface regarding potential voting fraud or election irregularities in presidential elections. (See, for example, Sean Sullivan and Philip Rucker, “Trump’s Claim of ‘Rigged’ Vote Stirs Fears of Trouble,” Washington Post, October 18, 2016, p. A1; Edward-Isaac Dovere, “Fears Mount on Trump’s ‘Rigged Election’ Rhetoric,” Politico, October 16, 2016; Daniel Kurtzleben, “5 Reasons (And Then Some) Not to Worry About A ‘Rigged’ Election,” NPR, October 18, 2016). If legitimate and verifiable allegations of voting fraud, or indications of misconduct by election officials on election day are presented, what legal recourses are available to complainants to litigate and potentially to remedy such wrongs and to contest the result of a presidential election?

Presidential elections are conducted in each state and the District of Columbia to select “electors” from that state who will meet and formally vote for a candidate for President on the first Monday following the second Wednesday in December. Under the United States Constitution, these elections for presidential electors are administered and regulated in the first instance by the states, and state laws have established the procedures for ballot security, tallying the votes, challenging the vote count, recounts, and election contests within their respective jurisdictions. A candidate or voters challenging the results of a presidential election in a particular state would thus initially seek to contest the results of that election in the state according to the procedures and deadlines set out in the laws of that specific state..."
Election Contestation

State Voter Identification Requirements: Analysis, Legal Issues, and Policy Considerations

"About 60% of U.S. voters live in the 32 states that require a voter at a polling place to produce an identification document (ID) before casting a ballot. Among those states, 19 permit voters without ID to cast a ballot through alternative means, such as signing an affidavit; 13 strictly enforce the ID requirement. The other 18 states and the District of Columbia have a range of nondocument requirements instead.

Over the last two decades, the number of states requiring voter IDs has tripled. The stringency of those requirements is controversial. States vary substantially in the range of IDs accepted, the information they must contain, and the ease with which a voter can procure an ID. Although all states requiring voter ID accept a local driver’s license, no two states have the same overall requirements. Among states with voter ID laws, 18 require photographic identification (photo ID), while 14 permit a nonphoto ID. In addition, eight states require ID for voters casting absentee or mail-in ballots..."
Voter identification

Protecting Personal Information: A Guide for Business

"Most companies keep sensitive personal information in their files—names, Social Security numbers, credit card, or other account data. If this information falls into the wrong hands, it can lead to fraud or identity theft. The principles in this brochure can help a business keep data secure..."
Data breach

Monday, October 24, 2016

Brest Cancer Education: HHS has implemented initiatives aimed at young women

"While most breast cancer is detected in older women, breast cancer also affects young women (defined as women under 45 years old). Researchers have found that young women affected by breast cancer tend to be diagnosed at a later stage, experience worse outcomes, and face unique issues in their treatment, such as effects on fertility. The EARLY Act requires HHS to provide breast cancer education and support specifically for young women. The 2014 reauthorization of the act included provisions that GAO identify HHS activities to provide breast cancer education, and assess whether such activities are duplicative of other federal breast cancer education efforts. This report addresses (1) HHS’s efforts to provide or support breast cancer education for young women, and (2) whether these efforts for young women duplicate other federal breast cancer education efforts..."
Breast cancer

Join the Bat Squad and Pull for Bats during Bat Week

"Bats have quite the list of positive effects in our world, from the billions of dollars they save in pesticides to natural pollination and seed spreading. Bats eat about one-half of their body weight in insects each night.
We need bats.
In honor of our furry, flying mammal friends, consider pulling for bats during Bat Week from Oct. 24-31. You can make a difference, whether you get a group together to literally pull invasive plants to help improve habitat and food for bats or figuratively “pull” for bats by sharing why they are important to our ecosystem with your friends and family. And, the great news is that you don’t have to be an adult to help bats..."

Bats

World Stroke Day: We Can Prevent Stroke

"In the United States, stroke is the fifth leading cause of death.1 Worldwide, it is the second leading cause of death. Globally, stroke takes the lives of more than 6.5 million people each year, and permanently disables another 5 million.2 This October 29 is World Stroke Day, a chance to raise awareness about the impact stroke has around the world and how to avoid stroke. This year's campaign is "Face the Facts: Stroke is Treatable."..."
Strokes

Friday, October 21, 2016

Flint, Michigan Water contamination

"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of Inspector General (OIG) is reviewing the circumstances of, and the EPA’s response to, the contamination in the city of Flint, Michigan’s, community water system, including the EPA’s exercise of its oversight authority. We are issuing this report to alert the EPA about factors that delayed its intervention using emergency authority under Section 1431 of the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA). When our review is completed, we plan to issue a subsequent report..."
Flint water contamination

Ocean Dumping Act: A Summary of the Law

"The Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act (MPRSA) has two basic aims: to regulate intentional ocean disposal of materials, and to authorize related research. Permit and enforcement provisions of the law are often referred to as the Ocean Dumping Act. The basic provisions of the act have remained virtually unchanged since 1972, when it was enacted to establish a comprehensive waste management system to regulate disposal or dumping of all materials into marine waters that are within U.S. jurisdiction, although a number of new authorities have been added. This report presents a summary of the law..."
Ocean dumping

School Enrollment: 2015

Find the latest data on school enrollment by age, sex, race, Hispanic origin , and foreign-born individuals as of October 2015.. 
School enrollment

Nationa Prescription Drug Take-Back Day

"Nearly 130 people in the U.S. die every day from a drug overdose, and most of those involve prescription opioids or heroin. The majority of people of people who misuse prescription drugs report that they obtained the drugs from family or friends.
But this weekend you can do something about it and help protect your family and friends.
This Saturday, October 22, is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, organized by the Drug Enforcement Administration. If you have unneeded or expired prescription drugs at home, you can drop them off at a safe, legal collection site in your neighborhood from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. local time. No questions asked. More than 6.4 million pounds of medication have been collected at past Take-Back Days..."

Prescription drugs

Monday, October 17, 2016

Spina Bifida Data

"About 3 in 10,000 babies are born each year with spina bifida, a serious birth defect of the spine. Complications from this condition can lead to severe kidney problems. As of mid-2016, more than 100 babies born with spina bifida have been enrolled in a new treatment plan designed to protect their kidneys.
CDC scientists and healthcare professionals who treat children with spina bifida designed the treatment plan. This is the first time a treatment plan with tests and clinical monitoring is being scientifically tested to determine which steps work best to protect the kidneys of babies born with spina bifida..."

Spina Bifida

Saturday, October 15, 2016

New Identity Theft Report helps you spot ID theft

"Do you ever hear from customers or employees who want you to know that they’ve been affected by identity theft? If so, you’ll probably start seeing them use the new FTC Identity Theft Report. It tells you that someone important to your business is a crime victim, has alerted law enforcement, and is working to resolve the financial and emotional disruption that identity theft causes.
The new Identity Theft Report is a product of IdentityTheft.gov, the one-stop resource for people to report identity theft to law enforcement and get a personal recovery plan that responds to their specific identity theft circumstances. The FTC has updated the website to produce the new Report, along with customized letters for people to use to let you know they are victims and that your business records may contain fraudulent information..."
Identity theft

How Preferential Trade Agreements Affect the U.S. Economy

"Preferential trade agreements (PTAs) are treaties that remove barriers to trade and set rules for international commerce between two countries or among a small group of countries. PTAs directly affect a country’s economy by altering its flows of trade and investment. Primarily through trade, PTAs indirectly affect other aspects of a country’s economy—such as productivity, output, and employment. As of August 2016, the United States had established 14 PTAs with 20 of its trading partners. This report examines the economic literature on trade and PTAs and summarizes that literature’s findings on how trade and PTAs have affected the U.S. economy..."
Trade agreements

Safe Teen Driving

"Learning to drive is often considered a rite of passage for teenagers. But with the reward of being a new driver comes real risk. Car crashes are the leading cause of death for teens in the United States, taking the lives of six teens a day. CDC's Injury Center is committed to preventing teen crashes and related deaths and injuries.
CDC's study Parental Perceptions of Teen Driving: Restrictions, Worry and Influence  reveals that most parents report having rules and restrictions for their teen drivers, but only a small percentage formalize the rules and restrictions in a written parent-teen driving agreement. Parents worry less about their teen driver's safety during the newly licensed phase, when crash risk is high as compared to the learning phase. Implementing parent-teen driving agreements and updating existing agreements can assist families in keeping restrictions and expectations clear and ongoing as teens gain experience driving independently..."

Teen driving

Friday, October 14, 2016

Justice Department Outlines Plan to Enable Nationwide Collection of Use of Force Data

"Today, Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch announced several steps by the Department of Justice to enable the nationwide collection of data on law enforcement interactions with civilians, including data related to the use of force by law enforcement officers. 
“Accurate and comprehensive data on the use of force by law enforcement is essential to an informed and productive discussion about community-police relations,” said Attorney General Lynch.  “The initiatives we are announcing today are vital efforts toward increasing transparency and building trust between law enforcement and the communities we serve.  In the days ahead, the Department of Justice will continue to work alongside our local, state, tribal and federal partners to ensure that we put in place a system to collect data that is comprehensive, useful and responsive to the needs of the communities we serve.”   
The President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing called on law enforcement to “collect, maintain and report data . . .  on all officer involved shootings, whether fatal or nonfatal, as well as any in-custody death,” and the department is committed to heeding this call..."
Law Enforcement Force data

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Energy-related CO2 emissions for first six months of 2016 are lowest since 1991

"U.S. energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions totaled 2,530 million metric tons in the first six months of 2016. This was the lowest emissions level for the first six months of the year since 1991, as mild weather and changes in the fuels used to generate electricity contributed to the decline in energy-related emissions. EIA’sShort-Term Energy Outlook projects that energy-associated CO2 emissions will fall to 5,179 million metric tons in 2016, the lowest annual level since 1992..."
Carbon_Dioxide, Co2

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Friends, Family, and Diabetes

"One of the best ways to predict how well someone will manage diabetes: how much support they get from family and friends.
Daily diabetes care is a lot to handle, from taking meds, injecting insulin, and checking blood sugar to eating healthy food, being physically active, and keeping health care appointments. Your support can help make the difference between your friend or family member feeling overwhelmed or empowered..."
Diabetes

Learn More About ADHD

"October is Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) awareness month. This year's ADHD awareness month theme is ‘Knowing is Better.' Learning more about ADHD is the first step to an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment for individuals and families, as well as for the professionals who treat and support them. Here is what CDC is doing to learn more and raise awareness about ADHD.
CDC helps children with ADHD reach their full potential by working with partners to raise awareness of ADHD and improve knowledge of treatment options to support families, professionals, and the community.
 What is ADHD and how is it diagnosed?
ADHD is one of the most common neurodevelopmental disorders of childhood and often lasts into adulthood. Many children have trouble focusing and behaving at one time or another. However, a child may have ADHD when symptoms like having trouble paying attention, acting without thinking about what the result will be, or being overly active, continue over time and cause difficulty at school, at home, or with friends..."
Attention deficit disorder

The Administration’s Report on the Future of Artificial Intelligence

"Under President Obama’s leadership, America continues to be the world’s most innovative country, with the greatest potential to develop the industries of the future and harness science and technology to help address important challenges. Over the past 8 years, President Obama has relentlessly focused on building U.S. capacity in science and technology. This Thursday, President Obama will host the White House Frontiers Conference in Pittsburgh to imagine the Nation and the world in 50 years and beyond, and to explore America’s potential to advance towards the frontiers that will make the world healthier, more prosperous, more equitable, and more secure. 
Today, to ready the United States for a future in which Artificial Intelligence (AI) plays a growing role, the White House is releasing a report on future directions and considerations for AI calledPreparing for the Future of Artificial Intelligence. This report surveys the current state of AI, its existing and potential applications, and the questions that progress in AI raise for society and public policy. The report also makes recommendations for specific further actions. A companionNational Artificial Intelligence Research and Development Strategic Plan is also being released, laying out a strategic plan for Federally-funded research and development in AI..."
Artificial intelligence

Monday, October 10, 2016

How Big Should the Army Be? Considerations for Congress

"Article I, Section 8, of the U.S. Constitution vests Congress with broad powers over the armed forces, including the power "To raise and support Armies" and “To provide and maintain a Navy.” As such, the size of the armed forces is a topic of perennial congressional interest and debate. Congress annually sets minimum and maximum strength levels for the active components and maximum strength levels for the reserve components.

The House and Senate versions of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for FY2017 authorized differing levels for active duty personnel in each of the services, but these authorizations diverge most significantly with respect to the Army. The Senate version of the FY2017 National Defense Authorization Act approved Army end strength of 460,000 soldiers, while the House version approved an Army end strength of 480,000. The Senate figure represents a decrease of 15,000 soldiers in comparison to the Army’s FY2016 end strength of 475,000, while the House figure represents an increase of 5,000..." 
U.S. Army

Friday, October 7, 2016

Findings on the Worst Form of Child Labor(2015)

"The Department of Labor's annual Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor focuses on the efforts of certain U.S. trade beneficiary countries and territories to eliminate the worst forms of child labor through legislation, enforcement mechanisms, policies and social programs. Read More
The Report presents:
  • Findings on the prevalence and sectoral distribution of the worst forms of child labor in each country.
  • Country-specific suggestions for government action (since 2009).
  • Individual country assessments that identify where Significant, Moderate, Minimal, or No Advancement has been made (since 2011).
The Report serves as a resource to foreign governments, NGOs, academics and policymakers working on labor and human rights issues. It helps inform Congress and Executive Branch agencies that formulate labor and trade policy and is an important resource for the Department in assessing future technical assistance and research priorities as it seeks to combat child labor around the world..."
Child labor

Getting a New Perspective on the Great Lakes’ Water Quality

"The Great Lakes cover over 95,000 square miles and contain trillions of gallons of water. These vestiges of the last Ice Age define immense. But their greatness makes water quality monitoring difficult.
In 2010, Titus Seilheimer, a US Forest Service research ecologist at the time, led a project funded by the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative that parsed the vastness of the Great Lakes to estimate water quality in different basins. This information can identify which areas are likely to receive high nutrient inputs – which can cause harmful algae blooms and dead zones – and where resource managers should invest in restoration efforts.
But as Seilheimer said, “We can’t measure water quality everywhere.”
Now, through the US Forest Service’s partnership with ESRI, the work Seilheimer and his colleagues did is presented in an online and interactive story map, one of many produced by the US Forest Service through its continuous effort to develop new and engaging ways to share information..."

Great lakes water quality

Severe Joint Pain

"New Study on Severe Joint Pain
A new CDC study looked at severe joint pain among adults aged 18 years or older with arthritis. Study highlights include
  • Severe joint pain from arthritis is from the breakdown of cartilage (tissues around a joint) in the body and pain that is not managed well.
  • Severe joint pain occurs in more than one third of 52.5 million adults with arthritis.
  • The number of adults with arthritis and severe joint pain has increased significantly, reaching nearly 15 million in 2014 compared with more than 10 million in 2002.
  • Some groups are affected by severe arthritis pain more than others and include African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, people in fair to poor health, adults with serious psychological distress, people who are unable to work, and people with diabetes or heart diseas..."
    Joint pain

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Data Visualization Gallery

"The Census Bureau is working to increase our use of visualization in making data available to the public, and this gallery is an early part of that effort. The first posted visualizations will pertain largely to historical population data, building on prior work done to portray historical changes in the growth and redistribution of the U.S. population. For later visualizations, the topics will expand beyond decennial census data to include the full breadth of Census Bureau data sets and subject areas, from household and family dynamics, to migration and geographic mobility, to economic indicators..."
Census Visual data

Internships, Fellowships, and Other Work Experience Opportunities in the Federal Government

"While there are many opportunities in the federal government for internships, fellowships, and other work experience, there is no comprehensive source to assist in locating these opportunities. This report describes Internet resources for prominent and popular opportunities for internship, fellowship, and work experience programs within the federal government. The report is intended as a selective guide for students of all levels: high school, undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate. It provides information on legislative, executive, and judicial branch opportunities and links to several aggregators of jobs data. The introduction provides a number of insights to assist applicants on understanding terminology, timing applications, and expectations for types of work involved..."
Federal government employment

Encryption: Frequently Asked Questions

"Encryption is a process to secure information from unwanted access or use. Encryption uses the art of cryptography to change information which can be read (plaintext) and make it so that it cannot be read (ciphertext). Decryption uses the same art of cryptography to change that ciphertext back to plaintext. Encryption takes five elements to work: plaintexts, keys, encryption methods, decryption methods, and ciphertexts. Data that are in a state of being stored or in a state of being sent are eligible for encryption. However, data that are in a state of being processed— that is being generated, altered, or otherwise used—are unable to be encrypted and remain in plaintext and vulnerable to unauthorized access..."
Encryption

Presidential Transitions: Issues Involving Outgoing and Incoming Administrations

"The crux of a presidential transition is the transfer of executive power from the incumbent to the President-elect. Yet the transition process encompasses a host of activities, beginning with preelection planning and continuing through inauguration day. The process ensures that the federal government provides resources to presidential candidates’ transition teams, and, eventually, the President-elect’s team; and includes close coordination between the outgoing and incoming Administrations. The Presidential Transition Act (PTA) of 1963, as amended, established formal mechanisms to facilitate presidential transitions and authorizes the Administrator of General Services to provide facilities and services to eligible presidential candidates and the Presidentelect. A presidential transition facilitates the establishment of a new Administration and prepares it to govern. Additionally, as noted by the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs in a report on S. 1172 (114th Congress, Presidential Transitions Improvements Act of 2015), planning for a presidential transition helps to ensure the nation’s security..."
Presidential transitions

Human-Induced Earthquakes from Deep-Well Injection: A Brief Overview

"The development of unconventional oil and natural gas resources using horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing has created new demand for disposal wells that inject waste fluids into deep geologic formations. Deep-well injection has long been the environmentally preferred method for managing produced brine and other wastewater associated with oil and gas production. However, an increasing concern in the United States is that injection of these fluids may be responsible for increasing rates of seismic activity. The number of earthquakes of magnitude 3.0 or greater in the central and eastern United States, where there are many injection wells, has increased dramatically since about 2009. For example, over 60 earthquakes of magnitudes 4.0 to 4.8 have occurred in central Oklahoma from 2009 to mid-year 2016. Some of these earthquakes may be felt at the surface. The largest earthquake in Oklahoma history (magnitude 5.8) occurred on September 3, 2016, near Pawnee, causing damage to several structures. Central and northern Oklahoma were seismically active regions before the recent increase in the volume of waste fluid injection. However, the sharp uptick in earthquake activity does not seem to be due to typical, random changes in the rate of seismicity, according to several studies..."
Earthquakes and deep-water wells

Made in the USA and Measured by the Census Bureau

"For more than 200 years — since the dawn of the Industrial Revolution in America — the U.S. Census Bureau has described the state of America’s manufacturing. It all began as part of the 1810 Census, when U.S. Marshals collecting the population data also asked the first questions on manufacturing establishments. U.S. manufacturing has changed since then, when the landscape was dotted with textile mills. Later this week, the nation will celebrate this evolution with its annual observance of Manufacturing Day, when manufacturers across the country open their doors to showcase their modern manufacturing to America to inspire the next generation of manufacturers...."
Made in the USA

Monday, October 3, 2016

As the Weather Cools, Your Firewood Choices Matter

"This October, the Nature Conservancy’s Don’t Move Firewood campaign and Hungry Pests, an initiative from APHIS, are partnering to present the first-ever Firewood Awareness Month. The cooler nights and quickly approaching fall season brings an increase in RV camping, hunting, and home heating. Firewood Awareness Month looks to raise public awareness about the potential danger of firewood movement as a pest and disease pathway at this high-risk time of year.
Tree-killing invasive insects and diseases can lurk both inside, and on the surface, of firewood. While these insects and diseases don’t travel far on their own, transporting firewood allows them to move hundreds of miles and start infestations in new places, explains APHIS Deputy Administrator Osama El-Lissy..."
Firewood