THUMBS UP: The Ogden area is fortunate to have volunteers like Lyndsey Sorrentino, Cherie Malone, Marie Hahn and Carolyn Holland. These community members have sacrificed their personal time to keep Utah trails clean as part of the Pliking Club of Ogden. The group gathers at least once a week to pick up trash on different trailheads. In September, the group reported gathering 194 bags of trash in total across 30 miles of trails.
These individuals are inspiring to all those who recreate outdoors in Northern Utah. We would all do wise to follow their example and pick up stray trash across our path to make our area a cleaner, more beautiful place to be. Our cities and governments do not have enough resources to pick up all the garbage inconsiderate residents leave in these public places.
THUMBS DOWN: If a disease is spreading in elm trees in Ogden Canyon as one Utah arborist believes it is, there are serious long-term consequences to the trees and wildfire safety in our area. Most of us probably don't realize the danger of transporting firewood from other areas or states, and how destructive one little bug can be.
THUMBS DOWN: We love winter, but with the first forecast of snow for this weekend, we're not ready to give up fall yet and battle drivers on Interstate 15 while it's under construction.
THUMBS UP: Weber State renewed using an online mental health service for its students a second year in a row. It is important that our educational entities emphasize ongoing mental health education and services to our youth and young adults. According to the university, Therapy Assistance Online (TAO) is provided to students in addition to the university's counseling and psychological services.
THUMBS UP: Utah representatives like Karianne Lisonbee are working as part of the Legislature to put more teeth in Utah's laws to punish stores that sell electronic cigarettes to underage customers. According to the Salt Lake Tribune, the proposal was approved Wednesday by a legislative panel. Utahns can expect to see more discussion of the dangers of vaping in the 2020 Legislature.
With the outpouring of information and focus locally and nationally now on vaping, those refuting any dangers associated with it's use are fighting an uphill battle that will ultimately mirror that of tobacco companies in decades past.
THUMBS DOWN: A new study published Monday shows links to air pollution and miscarriages for women in their first trimesters, according to a CNN report. This coincides with a study conducted in Utah that found women were at increased risk for miscarriage even if there was exposure to short-term pollution. This scientific research continues to point to the urgent need to reduce air pollution in Utah in order to mitigate severe effects to our environment and population.