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From Great Recession to Great Reshuffling

What we found amounts to a “Great Reshuffling” – a sorting of human capital, job creation, and business formation that has had vast implications for Americans and their communities. In the years following the recession, top-tier places have thrived, seeing meteoric growth in jobs, businesses, and population. Meanwhile, the number of people living in America’s most distressed zip codes is shrinking as the nature of distress becomes more rural.

Reckoning with Opioids in Farm Country

Rampant drug abuse has long been perceived as an urban plight. But when it comes to opioid painkillers—including oxycodone, hydrocodone, fentanyl, and heroin—rural communities are on the frontlines. Five of the states with the highest rates of drug overdose deaths—Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, New Hampshire, and Pennsylvania—are predominantly rural. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has reported that rates of overdose death in rural areas have been rising higher than they have in urban areas since 2006.

Oregon hemp farming sees "explosive growth"

The Oregon hemp industry is like a raging river, restrained by a dam that might soon break and allow products to flood an array of new markets. A provision in the 2018 Farm Bill before Congress would strike cannabidiol from the Drug Enforcement Administration’s list of Schedule 1 drugs, those the agency deems to have the highest potential for abuse. Nationally, hemp sales topped $820 million in 2017. The market is expected to reach $1 billion in 2018.In the roller-coaster cannabis industry, hemp enjoys a smoother ride than recreational marijuana.

Dolphins are simplifying their calls to make themselves heard over noisy humans

It’s a real sea of noise in the oceans these days. On top of the normal sounds of singing cetaceans, cracking shrimp, and surprisingly rowdy fish, humans have unloaded a veritable cacophony into the water: noises from boats large and small, the sounds of great honking container ships, the dull roar of seafloor mining, and the jackhammering of oil and gas exploration. And because sound travels fast, and far, through water, the noise pollution is magnified, spreading this high-decibel ambient sound all over the seas. So, what are dolphins to do, if they want to be heard over all that clamor?

Anthrax kills 13 bison on Fort. St. John farm

Thirteen farm animals are dead after coming into contact with dormant anthrax spores on a farm near Fort St. John. The Ministry of Agriculture says there is no public health risk and it is rare for the disease to spread from livestock to humans.

A Sense of Alarm as Rural Hospitals Keep Closing

“Options are dwindling for many rural families, and remote communities are hardest hit,” said Katy Kozhimannil, an associate professor and health researcher at the University of Minnesota.

Rural Americans are ok with 'outside' help to beat opioid crisis and boost economy

Ronald Reagan summed up the feeling when he was president: "I've always felt the nine most terrifying words in the English language are, 'I'm from the government, and I'm here to help.' "But rural Americans have come across scarier phrases since then, like "the opioid epidemic.""So what you have are some very serious problems — particularly around the economy and opioid and drug abuse — that really worry people," says Robert Blendon, professor of health policy and political analysis at Harvard's T.H. Chan School of Public Health.Small towns face big problems.

The Economic Benefits of Investing in Water Infrastructure

By closing the annual investment gap in water infrastructure, the national economy would stand to gain over $220 billion in annual economic activity and approximately 1.3 million jobs per year. The aggregate economic impact is comprised of the direct impact on the water infrastructure sector, as well as indirect and induced impacts that are generated by successive rounds of spending on goods and services in other sectors. By meeting the gap, the US economy stands to gain a total of $2.22 trillion in additional economic activity over the next 10 years.

Hundreds of fish die along Florida's Space Coast beaches

Hundreds of fish have washed ashore along Florida's Space Coast beaches, a week after the first signs of a toxic algae outbreak were reported. The dead fish, mostly mullet, were found this week from Melbourne Beach to Satellite Beach on the state's east coast.Despite the fish kills, water samples this week along the Space Coast showed a decrease in the algae known as red tide.The red tide began last October off southwest Florida after Hurricane Irma swept up the state. It has killed massive numbers of fish, along with scores of sea turtles and the state's beloved manatees.


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