Peeling paint is a source of lead poisoning for children. 

Lead poisoning rates surpass those in Flint, Mich.: Dozens of California communities have experienced recent rates of childhood lead poisoning that surpass those of Flint, Mich., with one Fresno locale showing rates nearly three times higher, blood testing data obtained by Reuters shows. The data shows how lead poisoning affects even a state known for its environmental advocacy, with high rates of childhood exposure found in a swath of the Bay Area and downtown Los Angeles. And the figures show that, despite national strides in eliminating lead-based products, hazards remain in areas far from the Rust Belt or East Coast regions filled with old housing and legacy industry. In one central Fresno zip code, 13.6 percent of blood tests on children under 6 years old came back high for lead. READ MORE


How to protect your browsing history: Congress voted this week to allow internet service providers to sell the browsing habits of their customers to advertisers. The move, which critics charge will fundamentally undermine consumer privacy in the United States, overturns Obama-era rules issued last October designed to give people more control over their personal data. Those rules, drawn up by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), were scheduled to take effect by the end of 2017 and would have forced ISPs to get people’s consent before selling their data to advertisers and others. Now that they have been scrapped, ISPs such as Comcast, Verizon and AT&T are free to track all your browsing behavior and sell it to advertisers without consent. The United Kingdom’s Guardian newspaper explains how to protect yourself. READ MORE


About those weaponized drones: An Islamic State drone started following the crew of the Australian television show Sunday Night as they were filming. ISIS militants have taken to their fight to the air, re-wiring everyday hobby drones so they can drop grenades from the skies above. Sunday Night’s team experienced their frightening power first-hand. See the show:


Soy nut butter manufacturer named, shut down: The Food and Drug Administration has finally named and shut down the manufacturer of soy nut butter implicated in an ongoing nationwide E. coli outbreak, noting that records and employees at Dixie Dew Products Inc. revealed food safety violations going back at least 15 years, reports Food Safety News. Federal officials say they believe all of the potentially contaminated products made with soy paste from the Kentucky company have been recalled, but they are asking the food industry, foodservice operations, schools and consumers to double check the ingredients they have on hand. READ MORE

Don’t eat that cookie dough! Robin Hood All Purpose Flour is the subject of a food recall warning issued by Public Health Agency of Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA). The two federal agencies are collaborating with other federal and provincial public health partners to investigate an outbreak of Escherichia coli, called E. coli O121 that has now been linked to Robin Hood All Purpose Flour, Original. This outbreak is a reminder that it is not safe to taste or eat raw dough or batter, regardless of the type of flour used as raw flour can be contaminated with harmful bacteria such as E.coli. There have been 25 cases of E. coli O121 with a matching genetic fingerprints reported in four provinces. No deaths have been reported. READ MORE


Armyworms chomps their way across Africa: The fall armyworm, which is native to the Americas, was first detected in Africa barely a year ago yet is now chomping its way across the continent. The caterpillar—whose name derives from its tendency to maraud in vast numbers—has already infested hundreds of thousands of hectares of maize across more than a dozen countries on the continent, presenting a serious threat to food security. Spodoptera frugip erda is a formidable foe. The larvae of the fall armyworm moth, the caterpillars will eat everything in an area. Once the food supply is exhausted, the entire “army” will move to the next available food source. Pesticides only work when the larvae are very small and before they have begun to cause visible damage to the crop. After that, there are no quick fixes. The pest, which prefers maize, can cause crop losses of more than 70 percent. READ MORE

Syrian children experience unbelievable trauma: The nongovernmental organization Save the Children recently released a report documenting almost unbelievable trauma among Syrian children, notes the Washington Post. Hundreds of thousands of these children have known nothing but war, death, dispossession, and loss. Syrian enrollment in primary education has dropped from 98 percent before the war to 61.5 percent this year. An entire generation risks being lost, not only in Syria but across the fractured states of the Middle East. READ MORE


Rise of the Machine, again: Bloomberg reports that Starship Technologies, the London-based company that has created six-wheeled self-driving delivery robots, will begin taking customers Domino’s pizzas in Germany and the Netherlands. Starship, launched in July 2014 by two former Skype co-founders, Ahti Heinla and Janus Friis, will whisk pizzas to customers’ doors if they live within a one-mile radius of certain Dominos pizza shops in “select German and Dutch cities,” the company said in a statement. READ MORE