Articles on Regulation

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The January 2019 collapse of a dam in Brumadinho, Brazil, sent mining tailings and mud over the landscape for miles, destroying this bridge and killing 300 people. Andre Penner/AP

Mine waste dams threaten the environment, even when they don’t fail

Dams built to hold enormous quantities of toxic mining waste have a long history of spills. Decisions in the Pacific Northwest threaten three free-flowing rivers there.
Reducing fine particle air pollution from petrochemical complexes, like this one near the Houston Ship Channel in Texas, is a low-cost way to lower air pollution mortality. AP Photo/David J. Phillip

Air pollution kills thousands of Americans every year – here’s a low-cost strategy to reduce the toll

A new study takes an innovative approach to reducing fine particle air pollution and spotlights key sources: factories that burn coal and oil, petrochemical plants and burning wood for home heating.
Speciality drug prices are so high priced that many patients skip or ration them. Ravital/Shutterstock.com

High-priced specialty drugs: Exposing the flaws in the system

High prescription drug costs are a widespread concern for consumers and policymakers. For patients who need specialty drugs, though, the problem is even worse, with no relief in sight.
Who is responsible for protecting consumer data? Data breaches are now a regular occurrence, and governments are stepping in. (Shutterstock)

Growth in data breaches shows need for government regulations

Failure of corporations to protect data means that government regulation is required to ensure corporation compliance.
President Donald Trump pictured with HHS Secretary Alex Azar on June 24, 2019, after signing initial legislation to require hospitals to reveal their prices. Caroline Kaster/AP Photo

What the Trump administration gets right about hospital price transparency

Would you buy a pair of shoes without knowing the price? Consumers have bought medical care from hospitals for years without knowing the costs, but new regulations will change that.
Mark Zuckerberg has been meeting with lawmakers in Washington, DC. Shawn Thew/EPA

The fightback against Facebook is getting stronger

Mark Zuckerberg's recent meetings with US lawmakers suggests his company is worried about the growing number of investigations, regulations and fines it faces.
The effectiveness of a drug may be evaluated based on its potential to shrink tumours – but this doesn’t necessarily equate to improved survival rates. From shutterstock.com

Do new cancer drugs work? Too often we don’t really know (and neither does your doctor)

National drug regulators use evidence from clinical trials to decide whether new cancer drugs will be approved for use. But these studies are often flawed.
Australia’s Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission found 45 of Bupa’s 72 nursing homes failed health and safety standards. In 22 homes the health and safety of residents was deemed at ‘serious risk’. www.shutterstock.com

Bupa’s nursing home scandal is more evidence of a deep crisis in regulation

The failure of regulators to take decisive action against errant companies is an unintended consequence of the design of 'responsive regulation'.
Warning signs in the Newark Health Department after the city learned that lead service lines to houses still were contaminating water. Seth Wenig/AP

How to address America’s lead crisis and provide safe drinking water for all

Newark is the latest US city to struggle with high lead levels in drinking water. Ending this public health crisis will require more money and enforcement, plus stricter water testing standards.

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