Where can we see the must-see documentary about natural gas mining?

Charismatic activist Josh Fox wears a gas mask and plays banjo in a toxic and potentially explosive EnCana gas well field, to get the image to that was made into the movie poster for “Gasland.”

Exposing the lack of regulation among the natural gas mining industry when it comes to land and water safety guidelines, Fox’s film shocks audiences—not only with the realization that unregulated natural gas mining alongside American water supplies has been federally sanctioned since 2005, but that no one seems to know about it. Cue the visits to homeowners who sold their ground rights to natural gas mining interests and who can now set their tap water aflame with a Bic lighter.

“It’s amazing to me that for eight years…no one’s been minding the store.” Fox said. He was referring to the unregulated release of a proprietary combination of chemicals into the ground in a mining process called “fracking.” The practice of fracking has coincided with widespread sickness of residents and animals, and with residential well water so steeped in foreign substances, that it can explode.

But, according to “Gasland,” almost all of the data collected about fracking problems is collected by concerned secondary sources. “Who is aggregating testing data?” Fox said. “Nobody. Not comprehensively, that’s part of the problem. It could take five or ten years to figure out what’s going on.”

The film’s production and release has roughly coincided with New York and Pennsyvania debates about what mining rights EnCana has around our area. The film, despite festival raves and an urgent topic, doesn’t seem to have secured distribution yet. Fox is traveling the film around, conjoined with a speaking tour. The film’s website has the dates and locations.

When it matters, Mets stumble

The Mets are known to reach out to the Hispanic community.  However, when they visit Arizona to play the Diamondbacks from July 19-21, they will not wear the Los Mets jersey to protest the Arizona immigration law. Instead they will don the jerseys on August 13 and September 17. For a team that reaches out to the Hispanic community, there’s really no better way to show their support. I know they already planned to wear the jerseys in the two other games but this is their chance to protest that the immigration law isn’t right. Of course, the not everyone disagrees with the law but it just doesn’t make any sense to wear the jerseys to celebrate days such as Hispanic Heritage Month and not in Arizona. The Major League Baseball Players Association has also disapproved  law.

Finland invades New York City

Frontman of Finnish band H.I.M hitting the high notes (Photo by: Elizabeth Ramanand)

One of Finland’s most commercially successful bands called H.I.M invaded the East Village this past with a three day concert series at the Fillmore Irving Plaza. H.I.M’s stop in New York is their last set of shows in the U.S before they head to Denmark to continue their worldwide tour in order to promote their seventh studio album entitled Screamworks: Love in Theory and Practice.

The price of the thirty-six dollar ticket included a two hour performance by the headlining band H.I.M as well as three more talented bands in the lineup.

Hailing from Los Angeles, California, the punk band Drive A opened the show and got the blood pumping with their aggressive style and raw energy. Their young lead singer, Bruno Mascolo,  has a striking resemblance to Sex Pistols frontman Johnny Rotten, and is entertaining with his stage diving antics.

Fellow Los Angeles band Dommin, hit the stage right after and it was an entirely different sound. If Elvis had a heavy metal band, with a Gothic influence and sound, Dommin would definitely be it. Even though the band’s sound is heavy metal they also incorporate and draw inspiration from film scores of the forties and fifties.

Goth, rock band We Are the Fallen is comprised of former Evanescence members guitarists Ben Moody and John LeCompt along with drummer Rocky Gray and  powerful vocalist (who was also an American Idol finalist) Carly Smithson.  They have a very similar sound to Evanescence, which is a bold, eerie yet operatic sound. Smithson’s vocals were on point but her stage presence lacked

Lead singer Carly Smithson of We are the Fallen (Photo by: Elizabeth Ramanand)

As H.I.M came out onto stage  the crowd went wild for their Finnish sweethearts.  The band treated their fans to a two hour set including a performance of their version of the Billy Idol classic song “White Wedding.”

Other than the snooty teenagers, the pushing and shoving, the lack of air and everything else that comes along with a heavy metal concert, the invasion of Finland’s finest was absolutely enjoyable.

Africa’s battle against HIV begins to fail

Video produced by Nichole Sobecki from The New York  Times

Gene discovery-Breast cancer might be hereditary

BBC News article released on May 9th disclosed the newest discovery about breast cancer.

Breast cancer happens to be  the second leading cause of death amongst women in the United States. As to October of 2009, the census estimated there were 155.8 million women, more than half of the population, living in the United States alone. Anything new unearthing about this deadly disease, therefore, is extremely important to everyone.

Approximately 45,500 women are diagnosed with breast cancer in the U.K, according to Helen Briggs, a health reporter for BCC News.

The exact reasons for developing the disease are still unknown. There are various factors like the environment and certain lifestyles playing a role, however, it is now known that women with a history of breast cancer in their families, are more prone to develop the disease as well. “Women with a strong family history of breast cancer are already given early screening for signs of tumours,” said Dr Douglas Easton of the University of Cambridge.

Dr Caroline Hacker, policy manager at Breakthrough Breast Cancer, said  “there isn’t anything we can do about the genes we inherit, we do know that you can reduce your risk of breast cancer by maintaining a healthy weight, limiting alcohol consumption and exercising regularly.”
In a recent study done by UK researchers, “five genetic clues to why some women have a family history of breast cancer have been identified.

The Cambridge University-led research, published in Nature Genetics, could see targeted screening and treatment of women more likely to get breast cancer.

It is thought about one in 20 of all breast cancers are down to inherited faults in known genes.”

Getting vaccinated even after the flu season ended

Flu season must be over, however Commissioner Dr. Gregory Larkin recommends that people still get vaccinated.

” We don’t know what to expect in the upcoming months, so I still urge people to get the H1N1 flu vaccine.”

An article published in The Journal Gazette by Amanda Iacone declares that the virus could easily rebound. Tests were done during the height of the virus’ spread last fall, and out of nearly 1,000 specimens, 98 percent tested positive. Children, teens and college-aged adults made up 84 percent of those samples, and with a recent fatal flu case occurring this past week, the best option is to protect ourselves as early as possible.

” Flu vaccine that will be available this fall will protect residents against both the seasonal and H1N1 virus, state health officials said.”

Let’s get vaccinated. Better be safe than sorry.

Colombia: the Newest Destination for Medical Tourism

Medical tourism consists of going abroad, overseas, to receive a medical, cosmetic, or dental procedure somewhere else other than the United States due to the high, unaffordable insurance prices. Costs overseas are much cheaper, thus this practice is gradually becoming a popular trend for Americans.

Places such as Thailand and India are nowadays hotspots for people who are looking to save some money on these procedures.

An article written today, May 7,  by David Gutierrez, a staff writer for naturalnews.com, announces that Colombia is also emerging as a new destination for medical tourism.

Average costs are estimated to be four times lower in Colombia than in the United States, so the city of Medellin is planning to set itself up ” as a premier medical tourism destination.” The services are said to be outstanding and the city has many interesting places to get to know. It is just a matter of taking the insecurity issue into consideration, as Colombia adds itself on to an extensive list of extraordinary destinations for vacationing while receiving the needed medical procedure.