Recent Posts

Seventh Circuit Opens the Door for End Run on General Causation in Toxic Tort Cases
Posted on 22 Oct 2015 by Steven M. Siros

A recent decision by the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], may significantly lower the causation bar for plaintiffs in toxic tort cases. In the case C.W. & E... Read More

Toxic Torts: More carcinogens enter the fray for consideration as alternatives for causation
Posted on 24 Mar 2013 by Thomas H. Clarke, Jr.

As has been frequently noted in prior posts, toxic torts are all about causation. Whenever a plaintiff alleges a particular type of disease or injury, alternatives need to be evaluated. This is especially so in the world of chemical exposure since many... Read More

A Closer Look at Climate Change Skepticism -- An Interesting Assessment
Posted on 2 Dec 2010 by Thomas H. Clarke, Jr.

In an interesting assessment, the author notes: "Debate over climate change is nothing new. Scientists have been arguing about whether greenhouse gases released by human activity might change the climate since the late nineteenth century, when Swedish... Read More

What killed off much of the explosion of life following the Cambrian "explosion"?
Posted on 5 Feb 2011 by Thomas H. Clarke, Jr.

Prior posts have discussed the Cambrian explosion, and noted the evidence suggesting that it was a more gradual process than stereotypically described. However, there has been little solid evidence to explain why, following this alleged burst of complex... Read More

Fighting the Last War: The Relevance (and Irrelevance) of the Exxon Valdez Spill to the Deepwater Horizon Spill
Posted on 7 May 2010 by Bradley M. Marten

By Brad Marten A number of us in the Pacific Northwest can remember the phone ca ll that came in the spring of 1989 telling us to come to Alaska. There had been an oil spill, the caller said, and we had better get up there right away. We packed up... Read More

Pets can transmit salmonella bacteria
Posted on 27 Mar 2011 by Thomas H. Clarke, Jr.

As many prior posts have noted, the key issue in toxic tort litigation is causation. With sloppy practices seeming to occur with fair regularity in the food industry, there has been an assumption that most sources of salmonella to which individuals... Read More

Why are kids getting heavier? Exposure to a cold virus is added to the list.
Posted on 30 Nov 2010 by Thomas H. Clarke, Jr.

A large number of factors have been cited in the recent past to explain why, since the late 1970's, children have been getting heavier: a) older mothers; b) air-conditioning, c) medications, d) less sleep, and e) environmental contaminants (e.g.,... Read More

Lead exposure appears to increase when lead lines are partially replaced
Posted on 31 May 2010 by Thomas H. Clarke, Jr.

As noted in prior posts, some urban water systems installed lead pipes many years ago, particularly on the distribution lines from mains into homes. Partial replacement of lead service lines has been promoted as one solution to the problem of lead-contaminated... Read More

Amphibians face threats from chemicals across the landscape
Posted on 30 Dec 2010 by Thomas H. Clarke, Jr.

Numerous prior posts have noted various theories and evidence for the reduction in number of frogs found in various environments. Taking a step back from focusing on agricultural lands and practices, some researchers are surveying the presence of frogs... Read More

EPA announces new air emission regulations for coal-fired power plants
Posted on 16 Mar 2011 by Thomas H. Clarke, Jr.

Prior posts have noted the numerous studies that support the view that emissions from a variety of sources, including automobiles, trucks, and power plants, have an adverse impact on the health of those exposed to such emissions. It is also fairly certain... Read More

The multitude of factors that influence what illness or disease strike are sometimes quite surprising
Posted on 10 Mar 2010 by Thomas H. Clarke, Jr.

As noted in prior posts, the key issue in toxic torts is causation. Yet, how an illness, disease, or adverse impact occurs is sometimes quite surprising. Only to illustrate the principle, I note two recent reports that demonstrate the unexpected. ... Read More

The neurological effects of lead & PCB's compared with ADHD: What can be learned from the similarities and differences
Posted on 3 Dec 2010 by Thomas H. Clarke, Jr.

Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, is one of the most frequently diagnosed neurobehavioral problems in children and is thought to be largely hereditary. But only a small number of cases have been linked to specific genes, leading many... Read More