Purpose of this website

Texas_PSR  Purpose of this website

Texas PSR has designed this website to post relevant information and links as we expand our services throughout the entire State of Texas.

  The posts will scroll down the page from newest to oldest.

  There is a Search feature and the Category Tab at the right to select a specific topic you would like to see.

  The Resources Tab has information about a variety of issues related to our advocacy topics.

  Training opportunities have been sorted by category “Training” and tagged by “Category” for easy searching.

  Oftentimes, a news article will be shorted or removed from a website. Or, an editorial can be lost in the middle of a series of posts. This website provides a place to archive and link to those specific types of posting.

Thank you all for your support and Enjoy!

Director – Texas Physicians for Social Responsibility

New Director posting

JOIN TEXAS PSR!

Texas Physicians for Social Responsibility (Texas PSR) is seeking a part-time Director to lead our statewide environmental advocacy organization through a time of growth and change.
Texas Physicians for Social Responsibility (TX PSR), formerly Austin PSR, is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit formed in 2003 in Austin, Texas. As the only Texas affiliate of Physicians for Social Responsibility, Texas PSR represents National PSR’s mission to assert a strong medical voice, guided by the values and expertise of medicine and public health, to protect human life from the gravest threats to health and survival.
TX PSR’s strategy for achieving positive change is to provide a conduit for the medical community to educate and inform the public and lawmakers about potential threats to the public health through research, analysis, and expert testimony on key issues.
Job Description
The Director of Texas PSR is the sole staff member providing support for Texas PSR members. The Director is responsible for organizational management, administration, and the implementation and evaluation of all programs, grants and operations.

Responsibilities

• Manage the organization and serve as lead for both short-term and long-term planning
• Provide leadership and management to assure that Texas PSR is well-respected, self-sufficient, and financially secure
• Represent Texas PSR and its mission to clients, funders, community leaders, and the community at large, including city and state level advocacy, and coalition building with partners
• Manage the organization’s infrastructure including planning, Board meetings, finances, fundraising, use of technology, Website updates and maintenance, marketing, program development and evaluation, and human resources
• Maintain and grow membership, and ensure periodic updates to membership
• Recruit (in concert with the Board Co-Presidents) and manage a regionally influential Board of Directors to develop overall strategy and to assure funding and fiduciary responsibility
• Such other duties as may from time to time be assigned by the Board of Directors
Overview of Duties
• Represent Texas PSR at meetings and on monthly OnePSR phone calls with National PSR
• Update Austin PSR website periodically; at a minimum, monthly
• Create and send monthly e-newsletters and updates to all members and supporters
• Organize and conduct Board meetings at least 3-4 times a year.
• Act as legislative contact and advocate during the biennial Texas Legislative Session
• Identify opportunities for PSR Board members to testify or participate in press conferences, and support Board members with background info, etc to make testifying possible
• Organize fundraiser/educational events at least twice a year (typically spring and fall)
• Provide Board members with research and rough drafts for letters to the editor and/or op-eds
• Seek opportunities and prepare grant requests and donation drives
• Complete annual report and annual grant request to send to National PSR
• Respond to other Board and non-Board member requests as appropriate
• Maintain membership and email lists
• Assist Treasurer with preparation of appropriate tax documents and forms
• Other duties as assigned

Preferred Qualifications
• Strong dedication to environmental / health issues and PSR’s mission
• Knowledge and a minimum of 2 years of experience in environmental/ health/non-profit arena
• Bachelor’s Degree required (Masters preferred) preferably in Environmental Science, Health, Communications or Administration field
• Administrative, organizing, or management experience
• Fundraising experience desired
• Strong computer skills
• Graphics abilities and web skills preferred
• Communications, organizing, and outreach skills, including the ability to write effective press releases and statements and conduct internet research
• Grants researching, and writing skills
• Ability to coordinate effectively with a group of people, articulate goals and accomplishments
• A positive attitude and strong interpersonal skills are essential, as well as the ability to work quickly under pressure from deadlines.
Pay

Texas PSR provides a competitive salary and flexible schedule.

Hours
To be determined, but not more than 25 hours per week.
How to Apply

Qualified candidates must submit a resume, cover letter (including salary requirements), and three references outlining their interest in and qualifications for the position to: employmenttexaspsr@gmail.com . Both documents are required and must be submitted in .doc or .pdf format. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

Laredo Morning Times – Reusable bags editorial

Texas Physicians for Social Responsibility support Laredo’s Single-Use Plastic Bag Ban

Published: Monday, July 7, 2014 3:28 PM CDT in the Laredo Morning Times Newspaper (http://www.lmtonline.com/)

To the editor:

The Laredo City Council is on the right track with the new partial ban on single use plastic bags.

Texas Physicians for Social Responsibility, the largest state-wide environmental advocacy group led by healthcare professionals, applaud this important initiative as a way to reduce waste in our landfills and waterways, save tax payer dollars and protect our environment.

We were therefore disheartened to read the Laredo Morning Times front-page article on June 23, “Studies: Used bags deadly” This article relies on flawed science to assert that plastic bag bans, which have been adopted by well over 100 municipalities nationwide, may be dangerous to public health by encouraging people to use bags that harbor bacteria.

The Laredo Morning Times article states that a 2012 study “found that San Francisco’s plastic bag ban lead to a 46 percent increase in deaths due to bacterial infections.”

This statement is erroneous and misleading. The 2012 study, by researchers Jonathan Klick and Joshua Wright, provides no proof that reusable bags cause illness; the science is weak and the speculation irresponsible.

As the San Francisco Department of Health pointed out in their response to the Klick and Wright study, the lack of peer review, direct causation, direct patient testing, patient controls, and the insufficient nature of Emergency Room data make the study of dubious value.

The Department summarized its response.

“The idea that widespread use of reusable bags may cause gastrointestinal infections if they are not regularly cleaned is plausible.

However, the hypothesis that there is a significant increase in gastrointestinal food-borne illnesses and deaths due to reusable bags has not been tested, much less demonstrated in this study.”

They went on to say that, while reminders about safe food-handling and transport may be useful, the claims made by authors of the study were unnecessarily alarming and a disservice to the public.

Texas Physicians for Social Responsibility urge the Laredo community to embrace the partial ban on single use plastic bags.

Plastic bags, while seemingly harmless, can cause damage and drain our resources.

Plastic bags can block storm drains and waste water treatment systems, for example.

The bags take hundreds of years to decompose in our landfills, and they can harm or kill wildlife.

To reduce any chance of infection from reusable bags, use common sense.

Regularly washing reusable bags, continuing to use permissible plastic bags for transporting meat and fish, and separating meat from vegetables are important strategies to prevent food-borne illness.

For the overall health of our environment and community, the plastic bag ban is beneficial and commendable.

Sincerely,

Lisa Doggett, MD, MPH, FAAFP is a family physician and co-president of Texas Physicians for Social Responsibility. Chris Masey, MBA, Director of Texas Physicians for Social Responsibility.

APA climate change webinar

The American Psychological Association (APA) and ecoAmerica invite you to join for a free webinar on the psychological impacts of climate change.
Thursday, June 26 from 2 – 3 pm ET. Dr. Norman Anderson, CEO of the American Psychological Association, will deliver opening remarks. Then we’ll have the authors of the report  take participants through the report and help them understand how the information in it can be applied in their own climate preparation, mitigation, and communication efforts. The webinar is free and open to the public, although folks do need to register in advance to get the dial-in information.

PSR Webinar: Health and Hydraulic Fracturing

PSR Webinar: Health and Hydraulic Fracturing

- http://www.psr.org/news-events/events/health-and-fracking-3.html

Physicians for Social Responsibility is pleased to invite you to our three-part webinar series on Health and Hydraulic Fracturing.  The webinars, each featuring an outstanding expert in the field, will provide sound scientific knowledge for health professionals and others concerned about the potential harms to health and the environment from unconventional gas and oil extraction.

NEW DATE: Thursday, June 19, 2014, 8:00 pm:

“Health Impacts Reported by Families Residing near Hydro Fracking Operations,” with Poune Saberi, MD, MPH. 

Register Here

Poune Saberi, MD, MPH, is an Occupational and Environmental Medicine physician and has more than ten years of clinical experience as a primary care doctor and public health specialist. She serves on the board of directors of Physicians for Social Responsibility Philadelphia and on the National board of Physicians for Social Responsibility. Dr. Saberi is a member of Climate 911, and volunteers as a content advisor for the organization, Protecting Our Waters.

She is currently working on several projects related to health and hydro fracturing operations in the Marcellus Shale funded by Center of Excellence in Environmental Toxicology at the University of Pennsylvania.

Dr. Saberi graduated with her medical degree and Masters of Public Health from Tufts University.

More information »

antibiotic overuse training

Protecting Antibiotics:
How Health Care Can Prevent Antibiotic Overuse in Animal Agriculture

Purchasing: Success Stories and Strategies for Hospital Food Service
June 24, 2-3:30pm EST

Registration link

The last webinar in this series will focus on hospital meat purchasing, and how over 200 hospitals in Health Care Without Harm’s network across the nation are buying less meat and/or more sustainable meat. Dan Henroid, MS, RD, from UCSF Medical Center’s Nutrition and Food Services will describe the Medical Center’s efforts at finding and procuring meat that has not been produced with non-therapeutic antibiotics. Charlotte Furman, MS, RD, in Food and Nutrition Services at the University of Washington Medical Center (UWMC) will highlight UWMC’s recent sustainable pork and poultry purchasing policy. Diana Rice, RD, of Meatless Mondays will talk about the health benefits of sustainable meat and how it is possible to meet nutrition requirements with reduced meat options. 1.5 CPEUs (for Dietitians)

——————————————————————————————

View our archived first webinar online: Foundations: Emerging Science, Farm Practices, and Federal Policy.
View our archived second webinar online: Clinical Advocacy around Antibiotics: From Resolutions to Policy Engagement.

For more information about HCWH’s Healthy Food in Health Care program, visit:

http://www.healthyfoodinhealthcare.org/

This Week in Environmental Health Perspectives – research

http://us5.campaign-archive1.com/?u=f082d5438f42c0dfe1c0eb396&id=46383e79da&e=5fe5fefa6d

This Week in Environmental Health Perspectives. Several interesting and relevant new article online.

  • A Prospective Analysis of Airborne Metal Exposures and Risk of Parkinson Disease in the Nurses Health Study Cohort
  • Lead Exposure, B Vitamins, and Plasma Homocysteine in Men 55 Years of Age and Older: The VA Normative Aging Study
  • Effects of in Utero Exposure of C57BL/6J Mice to 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin on Epidermal Permeability Barrier Development and Function
  • Heat, Heat Waves, and Hospital Admissions among the Elderly in the United States, 1992–2006
  • Proximity to Traffic, Ambient Air Pollution, and Community Noise in Relation to Incident Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Pesticide Exposure and Depression among Male Private Pesticide Applicators in the Agricultural Health Study
  • Perfluoroalkyl Chemicals and Asthma among Children 12–19 Years of Age: NHANES (1999–2008)
  • Identification of DNA Methylation Changes in Newborns Related to Maternal Smoking during Pregnancy
  • Outdoor Particulate Matter Exposure and Lung Cancer: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
  • Early Postnatal Exposure to Ultrafine Particulate Matter Air Pollution: Persistent Ventriculomegaly, Neurochemical Disruption, and Glial Activation Preferentially in Male Mice
  • Bisphenol A and Reproductive Health: Update of Experimental and Human Evidence, 2007–2013
  • Particulate Matter Air Pollution Exposure, Distance to Road, and Incident Lung Cancer in the Nurses’ Health Study Cohort
  • Residential Levels of Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers and Risk of Childhood Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in California
  • Environmental Tobacco Smoke Exposure and Children’s Intelligence at 8–11 Years of Age

Scientists: Data Shows Fracking Link to Methane in Well

Scientists: Data Shows Fracking Link to Methane in Well

http://www.texastribune.org/2014/06/06/scientists-data-shows-fracking-link-methane-well/

Excerpt…

“Field agents and technicians came out and conducted tests, measuring the amount of gas in his well and determining where the gas was coming from. Those tests have now been conducted and last week, the Texas Railroad Commission issued its official findings.

The methane concentration levels in Lipsky’s water is up slightly, the report indicates. It also states that the chemical make-up of the methane was inconclusive as to a specific source of the gas.

Specifically, the tests conducted by the state showed Lipsky’s water contained 8.6 milligrams per liter of methane, just under the federal government’s unacceptable limit of 10. But tests recently run by University of Texas at Arlington scientist Zac Hildebrand measured 83 milligrams per liter, the highest methane contamination level he says he has ever seen.

“But what we can say right now is that those are dangerous — that’s a dangerous level,” Hildebrand said.

In an e-mail to WFAA-TV last February, Railroad Commission spokeswoman Stacie Fowler said “the Commission is aware of elevated methane concentration levels.” Fowler also said the state’s “sampling and test results were focused on the source of the methane gas” and not on testing methane levels.

Lipsky says the Railroad Commission knew its concentration tests were not accurate.

“For whatever reason, they do not want to have on their record the true levels that I have,” Lipsky said.

So what did the state’s tests reveal about the source of Lipsky’s gas?

Test data supplied in the report measured the chemical makeup of both the gas found in Lipsky’s water and from two nearby gas production wells, called the Butler and the Teal. According to the Railroad Commission report, “the evidence is insufficient” to determine if the two samples match.

The scientists say the test data in the Railroad Commission’s report shows the chemical signature — known as the isotopic analysis — of the Barnett Shale gas is 46.52. The chemical signature measurement of the gas in Lipsky’s well is 46.63, an almost identical match.

“The methane and ethane numbers from the Butler and Teal production are essentially exactly the same as from Lipsky’s water well,” said Geoffrey Thyne, who reviewed the data for WFAA-TV. Thyne is a former U.S. Environmental Protection Agency geochemist, who know works for ESal, a Wyoming-based firm that contracts with oil producers. “It tells me that the gas is the same, and that the gas in Lipsky’s water well was derived from the Barnett formation,” Thyne said.

Bryce Payne, a soil scientist for Pennsylvania-based Gas Safety Inc., also reviewed the data. Payne, who Lipsky had hired to review past data, agreed, saying the gas in Lipsky’s water (referred to in the report as well number 8) is clearly the result of fracking operations.

“The gas from well number 8 is coming from the Barnett, and it’s coming nearly straight from the Barnett,” Payne said.

What’s more, both Thyne and Payne say these test results could represent the nation’s first conclusive link between fracking and aquifer contamination.

“And what we seem to have here is the first good example that that in fact is happening,” Thyne said.”

USCAN Webinar: What’s in the EPA Proposal to Cut Carbon Pollution from Existing Power Plants?

USCAN Webinar: What’s in the EPA Proposal to Cut Carbon Pollution from Existing Power Plants?

Friday, June 6, 2014
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM EDT

As directed by the President in his Climate Action Plan a year ago, EPA is issuing proposed standards for reducing carbon pollution from existing fossil-fuel power plants, the source of a third of U.S. total greenhouse gas emissions.

This briefing for USCAN members and allies brings together three top experts on the Clean Air Act and the carbon pollution standards to discuss and dissect the proposal. We may also be joined by a senior EPA official. We have scheduled the briefing to take place a few days after the expected rollout date (June 2) to allow time for our panelists to review the draft standard thoroughly.

Presenters:

* David Doniger, Director, Climate & Clean Air Program, Natural Resources Defense Council
* Gabriel Pacyniak, Institute Associate, Georgetown Climate Center
* Joanne Spalding, Managing Attorney, Sierra Club
* Senior EPA official (invited)

https://www4.gotomeeting.com/register/723528303

Do the EPA’s New Power Plant Rules Make Sense?

Do the EPA’s New Power Plant Rules Make Sense?

Dr. Lockwood is certain that they do.
Vote for Dr. Alan Lockwood’s climate change op-ed in US News’ Debate Club.

Dr. Lockwood, senior scientist for PSR, explains the health impacts of climate change and why the EPA’s new carbon rule is so important. Vote in support of his piece now!

http://www.usnews.com/debate-club/do-the-epas-new-power-plant-rules-make-sense

Webinar: Health and Hydraulic Fracturing

Webinar: Health and Hydraulic Fracturing
http://www.psr.org/news-events/events/health-and-fracking-3.html

June 19, 2014

Physicians for Social Responsibility is pleased to invite you to our three-part webinar series on Health and Hydraulic Fracturing.  The webinars, each featuring an outstanding expert in the field, will provide sound scientific knowledge for health professionals and others concerned about the potential harms to health and the environment from unconventional gas and oil extraction.

NEW DATE: Thursday, June 19, 2014, 8:00 pm:

“Health Impacts Reported by Families Residing near Hydro Fracking Operations,” with Poune Saberi, MD, MPH. 

Register Here

Poune Saberi, MD, MPH, is an Occupational and Environmental Medicine physician and has more than ten years of clinical experience as a primary care doctor and public health specialist. She serves on the board of directors of Physicians for Social Responsibility Philadelphia and on the National board of Physicians for Social Responsibility. Dr. Saberi is a member of Climate 911, and volunteers as a content advisor for the organization, Protecting Our Waters.

She is currently working on several projects related to health and hydro fracturing operations in the Marcellus Shale funded by Center of Excellence in Environmental Toxicology at the University of Pennsylvania.

Dr. Saberi graduated with her medical degree and Masters of Public Health from Tufts University.

More information »

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