How Moldy is Missouri marijuana? Local Company’s Tests Stir Up Controversy

St. Louis Today by Jack Suntrup

St. Louis, MO – A St. Charles County microbiologist’s test results for mold in marijuana, which he has shared on social media, are drawing questions from cannabis consumers and legal threats from members of the state’s cannabis industry. Kirk Hartwein, owner of Missouri Mold LLC of O’Fallon, has posted dozens of close-up photos of petri dishes, many covered in mold colonies, to his Facebook page this year. But while a growing audience is taking stock of Hartwein’s findings, critics have questioned his results. Three legal cultivators featured on his page have sent Hartwein cease-and-desist letters in recent months. For full text, click here.

Military Barracks Found with Mold, Pests, Broken AC and Brown Water

Washington Post by Joe Davidson

Washington, DC – A new audit by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) says some barracks, not just in the Army, are so bad that they degrade quality of life and military readiness. The report has drawn bipartisan, bicameral outrage and a blunt admission from the Pentagon. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) audit highlights three main points, some military living quarters are substandard and pose potentially serious health and safety risks, defense officials lack complete information about military housing finances, and that oversight is insufficient. For the full text, email

Are you Required to Report Asbestos Data to EPA? New Reporting Instructions Are Available!

EPA Washington, DC

On Monday, EPA announced the availability of reporting instructions for entities required to report on their use of asbestos under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). In July 2023, EPA finalized a rule that requires comprehensive reporting on all six fiber types of asbestos as the agency continues its work to address exposure to this known carcinogen and strengthen the evidence that will be used to further protect people from this dangerous chemical. Reporters must use the asbestos section 8(a)(1) reporting tool on EPA’s Central Data Exchange (CDX) to submit information. EPA will not accept paper submissions or electronic media. For the  For the full text, click here.

Inside EPA: Asbestos Ban Bill Gains First GOP Cosponsor But Prospects Uncertain

Inside EPA Washington, DC

Anti-asbestos groups have convinced a House Republican to co-sponsor their bill seeking to ban the carcinogen from use in the United States, the first time a GOP lawmaker has backed the legislation, though the Senate version remains without a GOP co-sponsor and Congress is unlikely to act on the legislation anytime soon amid the looming government shutdown. Rep. Don Bacon (R-NE) signed on as a co-sponsor to H.R. 2402 on Sept. 26, according to the official congressional tracking website The bill, and its Senate companion, seeks to ban the use of commercial asbestos in the United States. For full text, email

Designate PFOA and PFOS as Hazardous Substances Under CERCLA

JDSupra Wasington, DC

Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) proposed a rule to designate perfluorooctanic acid (“PFOA”) and perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (“PFOS”), two per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (“PFAS”), as hazardous substances under the federal Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (“CERCLA”). If finalized, the rule would have far-reaching consequences on closed and in-progress Superfund sites, state cleanup program requirements, and commercial real estate transactions. For the full text, click here

Syracuse Finds Thousands of Lead Paint Violations in Year One of Enforcement

CNY Central by Conor Wight Syracuse, NY

For the past year, the City of Syracuse Code Enforcement team has had the ability to cite lead paint issues. The head of the department said they’ve issued thousands of tickets as efforts continue to help prevent kids from becoming lead-poisoned. the city identified around 3,000 violations in about 1,600 properties since last autumn. Of those violations, he said about 61% — approximately 1,830 violations — are now closed. The Syracuse Common Council first passed the ordinance making lead paint a code violation in 2020; after delays attributed to red tape and the COVID-19 pandemic, enforcement began in August of 2022. For full text, click here.

Asbestos Lurks in Turkey’s Earthquake Zone

Deutsche Welle Turkey

In Hatay, southern Turkey, crews are still demolishing buildings that were heavily damaged in the earthquake that struck on February 6, 2023, and killed tens of thousands of people. Yellow diggers move piles of leftover rubble, kicking up clouds of dust that shroud the city. An expert team from the Turkish Chamber of Environmental Engineers collected dust samples in Hatay, which were then analyzed by AGT Vonka Engineering and Laboratory Services, an internationally accredited laboratory, for DW. The investigation shows the presence of asbestos in the region despite official claims to the contrary.  For full text, click here.

New Mexico OSHB Fines City of Albuquerque for Gateway Center Asbestos

WRAL News by Allison Giron and Marilyn Upchurch Albuquerque, NM

Willful and serious. That is how New Mexico’s Environment Department’s Occupational Health and Safety Bureau (OHSB) describes the City of Albuquerque’s actions in ignoring asbestos while renovating the Gateway Center. The state organization levied its largest fine ever against the City of Albuquerque. The debris was swept up with brooms and thrown in the trash. Workers were not wearing PPE and all this was done while the HVAC system was still running, possibly transporting the dust through the building.  For the full text, click here.

Asbestos Foes See Boost For Ban Bill From Olin Support, Spending Rider

Inside EPA US

Advocates for banning commercial imports and use of asbestos are rallying to push a legislative ban over the finish line with the help of a new and unusual ally, Olin Corp. — one of the largest remaining users of the mineral — and a little-noticed provision in last year’s spending bill they say resolves a battle over asbestos-contaminated talc that sunk a prior bill. For the full text, click here

Homeowners Impacted by Oregon Road, Gray Fires Facing New Challenges with Asbestos Testing

KREM CBS Spokane, WA

Weeks after the Oregon Road and Gray fires burned through parts of Spokane County, heartache turned into headaches for homeowners who lost everything to the flames. That’s because many of them are finding out they’re required to get an asbestos test before they clean up the debris. One reason it’s become a headache is the question of how much it’ll cost. One woman who spoke to KREM 2 anonymously says she was told it could be anywhere from $200 to $2,000. That question was on the minds of many attending a recent community meeting in Medical Lake, which touched on debris management. There, officials shared each burned structure needs to be tested for asbestos before cleanup begins. For full text, click here.