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AIR QUALITY DATA REVEALS EXTENSIVE VIOLATIONS OF NATIONAL STANDARDS - NOVEMBER 9, 2004
The latest data from U.S. EPA shows widespread air pollution problems: over 170 million people live in counties with unhealthy air, where exposures to one or more criteria air pollutants exceeded national air quality standards in 2003. California is the worst, with 5 times the number of people experiencing unhealthy air as next-ranked Texas. Failures to meet the new health protective 8-hr ozone standard were by far the most frequently occuring air quality violation. Learn which counties have the highest ozone concentrations. Scorecard also spotlights the counties with the worst pollution problems involving fine particulates, which are responsible for most of the morbidity and mortality caused by criteria air pollution.

Provide a zipcode to find out about air quality in your community! See the top polluting facilities in the U.S. Learn more about criteria air pollutants.

TOXICS IN YOUR COMMUNITY - SEPTEMBER 20, 2004
Data from U.S. EPA indicate that industrial facilities released over 4.2 billion pounds of toxic chemicals to the environment in 2002.
Alaska tops the list of polluted states with over 500 million pounds of chemical releases, primarily from mining operations. Harris County in Texas experienced the largest releases of recognized carcinogens to air. Hamblen County in Tennessee had the largest releases of recognized developmental toxicants to air, with releases of nearly 18 million pounds from one facility: LENZING FIBERS CORP. RED DOG OPS. takes the title of number one polluter in the U.S., releasing 480 million pounds of toxic chemicals (more than 30 entire states).

Electrical power generation and mining are responsible for most of the industrial releases of toxic metals to the environment. Focusing on air releases, 64% of all mercury and mercury compounds and 70% of all arsenic and arsenic compounds were emitted by power plants. Looking at total environmental releases, mining operations dominate because of their huge volume of land releases.

Recent changes in TRI reporting now give us better information about chemicals that are highly toxic, but released in very small quantities, such as dioxin. Chemicals And Allied Products is the industrial sector responsible for over 80% of total dioxin releases, with over 50% of all releases in the US stemming from 2 facilities: the Du Pont Delisle Plant in Pass Christian, MS and the Dow Chemical Co. Freeport Facility in Freeport, TX. According to U.S. EPA, total releases of Persistent Bioaccumulative Toxic (PBT) chemicals increased by 11 million pounds, or 3% from 2001 to 2002.

Find the polluters in your area. Read what the companies have to say for themselves.

ANSWERING YOUR QUESTIONS ABOUT LOCAL POLLUTION - July 1, 2004
Scorecard has a new look, aimed at making it easy to find the answers to common questions:

Without altering Scorecard's capacity to provide reliable information about local pollution sources and toxic chemicals, we have updated the site's vocabulary and navigation for accessibility to the general public. Our goal has always been "to make the local environment as easy to check on as the local weather." Over the six years since Scorecard launched on Earth Day 1998, our audience has grown from environmental professionals and activists to people across the country who want to know if their community is safe or some chemical is harmful. We reach these concerned citizens through the media, who use Scorecard to compile stories like Is Your Town Toxic?, and the network of websites that redistribute Scorecard's information.

We will regularly feature top-priority environmental health campaigns on Scorecard's homepage: Learn about the growing asthma epidemic and dirty air, then zip to your community to see whether air pollution levels exceed safety standards.

Scorecard provides the facts about pollution for free. Please support our community service by contributing to Environmental Defense.

UPDATED PROFILES OF SUPERFUND SITES - March 20, 2004
Scorecard has incorporated EPA's latest information on environmental health risks from 1,305 federal
Superfund sites, including 11 new sites proposed for the NPL on March 8, 2004, and 21 sites listed in 2003. Listing and clean up of federal Superfund sites has slowed significantly in recent years, due to a 30% decrease in funding from 1999-2003 with no renewal by Congress of the 'polluter pays' tax on oil and chemical companies. Scorecard provides information current to March 2004 on the status of cleanup efforts, potentially responsible parties, contaminants detected, how contamination occurred, and more.

Find out if there are Superfund sites in your community.

LEAD HAZARDS - January 1, 2004
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control considers lead poisoning one of the foremost environmental health threats to children in the U.S. Almost a half million children - 2.2% of all pre-schoolers - have enough lead in their blood to reduce intelligence and attention span, cause learning disabilities, and damage permanently a child's brain and nervous system. Scorecard identifies the specific areas in communities all across the United States which have a
high risk of lead contamination in housing, or are located in hotspots of lead air pollution.

From 1990 to 2000, half of US states experienced increases in the number of children under age 5 living in poverty, one hazard indicator for childhood lead poisoning. 67% of children under age 5 in Puerto Rico live in poverty, as do 40% of children under 5 in the District of Columbia, 38% in Mississippi and New Mexico, and 37% in Louisiana.

Scorecard's hazard indicators are based on demographic and housing data from the Census 2000, and the children's blood lead level estimates reflect the most current survey data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.



EXPANDED INFORMATION ABOUT TOXIC CHEMICALS - APRIL 15, 2003
The universe of toxic substances that Scorecard profiles has grown to 7,500 chemicals as a result of ongoing efforts to improve the knowledge base about the human health impacts of chemical exposures. Scorecard can give you the facts about chemicals that are being found in many Americans' bodies. The Centers for Disease Control recently released its Second National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals, and Scorecard now offers a
guide to its results.

As new scientific resources are developed to characterize the toxicity of chemicals, Scorecard incorporates them. Our chemical profiles now include health effects information from the National Library of Medicine's Haz-Map database, which links chemicals to occupational diseases and their symptoms. Scorecard's lists of chemicals suspected of damaging the endocrine and nervous systems have also grown with the addition of the European Union's priority list of endocrine toxicants and a California list of neurotoxic pesticides. New online sources providing further information on toxic chemicals have been indexed and integrated into Scorecard's chemical profiles. For example, Scorecard now offers workers concerned about toxic chemical exposure on the job direct access to material safety data sheets.

Scorecard also covers the results of new chemical control initiatives. The Stockholm Convention, for example, has developed a new international target list of Persistent Organic Pollutants. Scorecard's information about pesticides and their active ingredients has also been extensively updated to reflect the current regulatory status of these toxic substances.

Scorecard's committment to providing up-to-date and scientifically credible information about chemicals has resulted in a growing audience and extensive press coverage. Scorecard is now recognized as the leading online source for integrated information about toxic chemicals.

TAKE ACTION TO PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT - EARTH DAY, 2002
Scorecard now collects action opportunities addressing all the environmental problems it covers, and makes it easy for site visitors to get engaged. You can speak out to relevant elected officials, telling them to address the most serious pollution problems in your area. You can join together with others to share your opinions about environmental issues, or help spread the word about local problems to your friends. And you can support organizations working to protect the environment, by making a donation or offering your help as a volunteer.

Take action to protect the environment in your community!

And share what you learn about local pollution from Scorecard with your friends. Help us spread the word! Scorecard can now send a free, customized report summarizing local environmental problems to anyone - just provide their name, email address and zipcode.

Send your friends or colleagues a community profile.

DIESEL CANCER RISK DWARFS ALL OTHER AIR TOXICS COMBINED - JULY 12, 2001
Nationwide, exhaust from diesel engines accounts for 78% of the total added cancer risk in outdoor air from all hazardous air pollutants combined, according to Scorecard's
analysis of newly released U.S. Environmental Protection Agency data. This new information is based on EPA's National-Scale Air Toxics Assessment, which provides detailed estimates of the levels of 41 top hazardous air pollutants in every community in the U.S. EPA's previous version did not include information on diesel particulate emissions.

Find out what the risk is in your community. Virtually all Americans - over 270 million people -- live in neighborhoods where the additional cancer risk from toxic chemicals in outdoor air is more than 100 times higher than the goal set by Congress a decade ago. For over 50 million Americans, according to the new estimates, cancer risk from their neighborhood air is more than 1,000 times higher than Congress' goal.

A very small set of chemicals and chemical categories account for the majority of health risks associated with hazardous air pollutants, according to Scorecard's screening-level analysis of EPA's exposure estimates: Nationally, just 8 chemicals account for 99% of estimated cancer risks. One pollutant - diesel emissions - accounts for almost 80% of the estimated lifetime cancer risk associated with outdoor hazardous air pollutant exposures.



FIRST-EVER DATA ON ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE FOR EVERY COMMUNITY IN U.S. - EARTHDAY, 2001
Scorecard now shows different degrees of environmental burden felt by different racial/ethnic and income groups in each county in the U.S. Go to our new
environmental justice section and type in your zip code for a report on your community.

WATER QUALITY AND WATERSHED HEALTH - SEPTEMBER 1, 2000
EPA estimates that 40 percent of the nation's waterways are too polluted for fishing and swimming. Find out how the waterbodies in your community are doing: Scorecard now provides easy access to information from the Environmental Protection Agency about Clean Water Act compliance and watershed health.
Type in your zipcode and get a summary of water quality issues, or explore Scorecard's new water section. Learn more about nonpoint source pollution, which is the leading cause of water quality problems. Take action to support policy changes needed to ensure the nation's waterways are cleaned up.

INTRODUCING THE SCORECARD GUIDE - NOVEMBER 3, 1999
Get the most out of Scorecard - check out our new, easy-to-use downloadable tutorial that steers you quickly to pollution information about your community and the nation. Taking you on a tour through this website, the
Scorecard Guide helps you understand the different features of the site. The Guide provides a clear introduction to the reports, maps and information available to you on Scorecard. Additionally, the Guide provides tools for local organizing and for conducting educational community meetings. Even if you are unfamiliar with the Internet, The Guide makes it easy to become a Scorecard expert and to share this information with others. The Scorecard Guide is downloadable for free in both English and Spanish.