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Huge Asteroid Makes Its Closest Pass To Earth Today

The space rock, which is nine times the size of a cruise ship, is dropping by Earth and it's not coming alone. Asteroid 1998 QE2 has already given scientists a surprise: It has its own moon, measured at about 2,000 feet wide.
NPR

Houston's Petrochemical Industry, Source Of Jobs And Smog

Houston's air quality improved dramatically over the past decade, but the city is still short of meeting the latest smog standards. Getting there isn't simply a matter of cracking down more on the petrochemical industry — the city needs to deal with cars on its sprawling roads, and bad air blowing from out of town.
NPR

Big-Mouthed Toucans Key To Forest Evolution

As humans have cut into Brazil's forests, the toucan population has taken a dive. The trees, in turn, have changed, too: Without large-billed birds to eat fruit with big seeds, only trees with small seeds thrive. Eventually, one scientist says, "the impacts on the forest could be quite dramatic."
NPR

Michigan Tracks Cattle From Birth To Plate

Would you like to know the life history of that steak before you eat it? Technology exists to give you that information, at least in Michigan, where the state government requires all cattle to carry an electronic tag for tracking purposes.
NPR

Baton Rouge's Corroded, Overpolluting Neighbor: Exxon Mobil

The Standard Heights neighborhood sits next to the nation's second-largest gasoline refinery. Recently, residents learned a new truth about the plumes of exhaust they see every day: Exxon Mobil's aging refinery and petrochemical facilities — like many others — are pumping out far more pollution than the law allows.
NPR

Headed To Mars? Watch Out For Cosmic Rays

The dose of radiation an astronaut would experience on a trip to Mars is higher than the annual limit set for workers at nuclear power plants. But Mars enthusiasts say the radiation threat isn't high enough to cancel the trip.

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