Monthly Archives: November 2017

The Henrys’ Law Constant of Monochloramine

Garcia MA, Anderson MA. The Henry’s constant of monochloramine. Chemosphere. 2017 Oct 30;192:244-249. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2017.10.157.

Monochloramine is a secondary disinfectant used in drinking water and is also formed in chlorinated wastewater. While known to hydrolyze over time and react with dissolved organic matter, its partitioning between the aqueous and gas phase has not been extensively studied. Preliminary experiments demonstrated that monochloramine concentrations in solutions open to the atmosphere or actively aerated decreased more rapidly than in sealed solutions, indicating significant losses to the atmosphere. For example, a monochloramine solution open to the atmosphere yielded a loss rate constant of 0.08 d-1, a value twice that for sealed samples without headspace (0.04 d-1) where loss occurs exclusively as a result of hydrolysis. A solution aerated at 10 mL s-1 had a loss rate constant nearly 10× greater than that for hydrolysis alone (0.35 d-1). To better understand partitioning of monochloramine to the gas phase and potential for volatilization, the dimensionless Henry’s law constants of monochloramine (KH) were determined using an equilibrium headspace technique at five different temperatures (11, 16, 21, 27, and 32 °C). The resulting values ranged from 8 × 10-3 to 4 × 10-2, indicating a semi-volatile compound, and were found to be consistent with quantitative structure activity relationship predictions. At 20 °C, monochloramine exhibits a dimensionless Henry’s constant of about 1.7 × 10-2 which is 35 times greater than ammonia but comparable to the Henry’s constant of inorganic semi-volatile compounds such sulfur dioxide. The Henry’s constant values for monochloramine suggests that volatilization could be a relevant loss process in open systems such as rivers receiving chlorinated wastewater effluent, swimming pools and cooling towers.

Time to End US Support for Terrorists

“The House Foreign Affairs Committee unanimously passed the Taylor Force Act (House Resolution 1164) on Wednesday, taking the United States government one step closer to cutting funding to the Palestinian Authority (PA) if it refuses to end its practice of  “pay for slay,” which involves rewarding terrorists for killing Americans and Israelis.” click here

Legionella in Warm Water Systems, Germany

Dilger T, Melzl H, Gessner A. Legionella contamination in warm water systems: A species-level survey. Int J Hyg Environ Health. 2017 Nov 3. pii: S1438-4639(17)30535-7. doi: 10.1016/j.ijheh.2017.10.011.

Legionellae constitute a frequent contamination of warm water systems and can lead to serious infections. Therefore, in many countries it is mandatory to monitor warm water systems for their presence. The method of examination in Germany is regulated by guideline ISO 11731 and DIN EN ISO 11731-2, and the results are reported as concentration of Legionella spp. Only limited information is available on the presence of individual species of Legionellae in the examined systems, since most investigations and research focus solely on Legionella pneumophila as the most important human pathogen. In this study 76,220 samples obtained from 13,397 warm water systems originating from 24 different zip code districts covering an area of more than 71,000km2 in southern Germany were examined. This resulted in the identification of 47,924 Legionella isolates to the species level using a MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry-based method. Legionella species distribution was analyzed with respect to warm water system type, geographic region (defined as zip code district) and temperature during sample taking. Overall, 20.7% of the samples were found positive for Legionella species and 14 different species of Legionella were recovered. These were not equally present throughout the geographic area investigated, but instead an individual regional diversity of Legionella species was observed for the examined zip code districts. Although Legionella pneumophila represented 84% of all contaminations found, depending on the geographical region its proportion varied substantially between 57.5% and 91.2%. The occurrence of other species was also of importance since they accounted for up to 42% of contaminations regionally, with Legionella londiniensis being most prominent representing up to 38.8% of recovered colonies. In addition, the influence of temperature on the individual species was disparate, but the temperature range between 50°C and 59°C was identified as the optimal condition for facilitating emergence of the majority of recovered Legionella species. The identification of Legionella to the species level by MALDI-TOF allowed for a more concise depiction of the regional distribution and the ecology of this genus, and may be of additional value when counter measures need to be initiated.

A Rather Scathing Rebuke of German Climate Policy to Reduce CO2

“The reality is that Trump and America has nothing to learn from the Green-preaching Germans, except on how to deceive and mislead the public. “ click here

Waterborne Disease Associated with US Environmental Waters, 2013-2014

McClung RP, Roth DM, Vigar M, Roberts VA, Kahler AM, Cooley LA, Hilborn ED, Wade TJ, Fullerton KE, Yoder JS, Hill VR. Waterborne Disease Outbreaks Associated With Environmental and Undetermined Exposures to Water – United States, 2013-2014. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2017 Nov 10;66(44):1222-1225. doi: 10.15585/mmwr.mm6644a4.

Waterborne disease outbreaks in the United States are associated with a wide variety of water exposures and are reported annually to CDC on a voluntary basis by state and territorial health departments through the National Outbreak Reporting System (NORS). A majority of outbreaks arise from exposure to drinking water (1) or recreational water (2), whereas others are caused by an environmental exposure to water or an undetermined exposure to water. During 2013-2014, 15 outbreaks associated with an environmental exposure to water and 12 outbreaks with an undetermined exposure to water were reported, resulting in at least 289 cases of illness, 108 hospitalizations, and 17 deaths. Legionella was responsible for 63% of the outbreaks, 94% of hospitalizations, and all deaths. Outbreaks were also caused by Cryptosporidium, Pseudomonas, and Giardia, including six outbreaks of giardiasis caused by ingestion of water from a river, stream, or spring. Water management programs can effectively prevent outbreaks caused by environmental exposure to water from human-made water systems, while proper point-of-use treatment of water can prevent outbreaks caused by ingestion of water from natural water systems.

Twists and Turns on Allegations Against Mr. Roy Moore

As the saying goes, it’s not over until it is over.

“Delbra Adams, Roy Moore’s former longtime secretary and judicial assistant, says that in 13 years of working for the senatorial candidate she never saw or experienced any inappropriate conduct toward women.” click here

“I’ve been in D.C. almost 20 years. And, again, I don’t have hard proof, and I will say this clearly: I do not have hard proof, but I strongly suspect it’s a very short list of people, all who are associated with Mitch McConnell – whether it’s Josh Holmes, whether it’s Karl Rove, might even be Steven Law – I don’t know, but I strongly, strongly suspect somebody out of the McConnell camp planted the story.” click here

“They were not going to let this person that they chose be tried in the court of public opinion,” she declared. “How wrong is that? I don’t even care what you think about Roy Moore. I don’t even care what anyone thinks about Roy Moore. The fact that the media thought that they could take this from the people of Alabama was reprehensible and abhorrent, and I am so glad that they stood up in the face of that threat.” click here


China Economic Impact Study Distorts Reality

This study is an exercise in statistical manipulation that distorts reality. Many factors affect productivity such that any correlation between TFP and atmospheric temperature is inconclusive. A correlation even if present is not indicative of causation or even that one is the “primary driver” of the other.

Peng Zhang, Olivier Deschenes, Kyle Meng, Junjie Zhang. Temperature effects on productivity and factor reallocation: Evidence from a half million chinese manufacturing plants. Journal of Environmental Economics and Management Volume 88, March 2018, Pages 1-17

This paper uses detailed production data from a half million Chinese manufacturing plants over 1998–2007 to estimate the effects of temperature on firm-level total factor productivity (TFP), factor inputs, and output. We detect an inverted U-shaped relationship between temperature and TFP and show that it primarily drives the temperature-output effect. Both labor- and capital- intensive firms exhibit sensitivity to high temperatures. By mid 21st century, if no additional adaptation were to occur, we project that climate change will reduce Chinese manufacturing output annually by 12%, equivalent to a loss of $39.5 billion in 2007 dollars. This implies substantial local and global economic consequences as the Chinese manufacturing sector produces 32% of national GDP and supplies 12% of global exports.