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How the 19th-century rebuilding of Britain’s Houses of Parliament made air pollution visible

Impressionist painter Claude Monet was able to see beauty in the swirl of fog encompassing Britain’s Houses of Parliament at the end of the 19th century. Most people regarded it as a very unpleasant inconvenience. Today, Londoners recognize the sources of the city’s current air quality problems: diesel vehicle exhaust and natural gas combustion for heating and cooking. Back in the 19th century, a small group of architects and scientists was just beginning to recognize the fog Monet painted as a threat to people, buildings and the city itself.

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Research challenges the view that environmental regulators are anti-business

During the 2016 presidential campaign, Republican candidates strongly agreed that the United States has too many regulations, and that these rules often are bad for business or a waste of taxpayer dollars. President Trump calls himself an environmentalist, but asserts that environmental regulations are “out of control.” Trump’s nominee to run the Environmental Protection Agency, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, has repeatedly sued to block federal environmental regulations.

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