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Pets: Halloween chocolate and dogs

The Halloween season brings with it much amusement and excitement, and one anticipated tradition is the variety of chocolate you have an excuse to enjoy.

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Beware of the Pitfalls of Public Wi-Fi

Ever notice how many people walk down the street completely engrossed in their smartphones and tablets? I fully expect to see one of them to walk into a light post one day.

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Dear EarthTalk: Where is all of our electronic waste going?

Dear EarthTalk: We must really be swimming in electronic waste, what with all the iPhones and other devices that are so common. How is this all being dealt with?

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Dear EarthTalk: SaskPower

Dear EarthTalk: There’s a lot of talk about the potential for renewable energy sources like solar and wind. But cheap, abundant coal is still going to power the world for a long time. How can we harness the energy from coal without emitting our way into a much warmer future?

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Don't be surprised by retiree healthcare costs

Retirement isn't cheap. Even though you're no longer drawing a paycheck, you still must pay for housing, food, utilities, transportation and healthcare, to name just a few expenses.

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January programs at White Oak Library District

Kick start 2017 with some fun, informative programs at the White Oak Library District this January!

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Utility bill savings clinic

Local residents interested in learning how to save money on their gas, electric and phone bills are invited to attend a free clinic sponsored by State Rep. David Welter, R-Morris and the Citizens Utility Board (CUB) from 10:00 a.m. to Noon on Thursday, October 3 at Morris City Hall, located at 700 N. Division Street. Attendees are encouraged to bring their gas, electric and phone bills for a free one-on-one consultation with a consumer expert from CUB, who will give tips on how to reduce costs. At clinics across Illinois, CUB has shown consumers how to trim their bills by an average of more than $200 per year. At the Utility Bill Clinic, guests will learn:

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Dear EarthTalk: Are we really heading for a coal-free power future in the U.S. or is this just an environmental pipe dream?

Far from just an environmental pipedream, the coal industry in the U.S. and around the world is in the midst of a major downswing. In 2011, coal dropped below 40 percent of total U.S. energy generation for the first time since the late 1970s, while in 2015 coal accounted for only 33 percent. And given the influx of cheap natural gas and the ascendance of renewable energy sources—not to mention recent coal mine safety lapses with tragic consequences—coal might not be able to mount a comeback. “Technological advances have made natural gas, wind and solar—and efficiency—increasingly competitive,” reports John Brinkley in Sierra Magazine. “The once-robust overseas demand for coal is disappearing.” Brinkley adds that a decade of sustained public advocacy for clean air and clean energy has left coal out in the dark. The Obama administration’s landmark Clean Power Plan that forces big coal fired power plants to clean up their acts dramatically or shut down has been one major factor in coal’s slide, while the Paris climate accord has sped up the process even more by taking a huge bite out of potential U.S. coal exports.

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Fight misuse and make antibiotics matter

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is asking Illinoisans to learn how they can help prevent the misuse of life saving medications. “Antibiotics are among the most commonly prescribed drugs. However, up to 50 percent of all antibiotics prescribed are not needed or are not as effective as intended,” said IDPH Director Nirav D. Shah, M.D., J.D. “Because of misuse, antibiotic resistant bacterial infections are more common, resulting in many of our life saving medications losing efficacy. I encourage everyone to take some time to learn how you can keep antibiotics working.”

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Column: A prescription for value-based healthcare

The U.S. healthcare system is afflicted with a debilitating chronic illness -- rising costs. Health spending could top $10,000 a person this year.

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Sports Briefs

The University of St. Francis men's basketball coaching staff will host an open practice and clinic at the Pat Sullivan Center on Sunday, Oct. 20 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m... The Lewis University women's swimming team picked up eight first-place finishes to defeat Hillsdale, 117-87, to open the 2013-14 season on Saturday at Lewis Pool... In its inaugural event, the University of St. Francis men's bowling team finished 17th among 25 teams at the 2013 Kegel/Illinois State Bowling Proprietors Association (ISBPA) Collegiate Classic Saturday and Sunday at Landmark Lanes... The No. 5 Lewis University men's soccer team scored a season-high five goals, led by a tally and two assists by freshman midfielder Alexandro Ayala, en route to the 5-0 Great Lakes Valley Conference victory over William Jewell at Lewis Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

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CVS stores stop selling all tobacco products

At a CVS store near Times Square, the shelves are notable for what they no longer display: cigarettes. Now the only smoking products to be found are those that could help customers quit.

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Improving Millennials' Financial Literacy with Mobile Technology

The 2015 Financial Literacy Summit 2015, (http://www.practicalmoneyskills.com/summit2015/) held April 15 in Chicago and co-hosted by Visa Inc. and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, focused on how mobile technology might improve millennials' learning, savings and investing behavior in the future.

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Cheap Trick to headline 2015 Taste of Joliet

Tickets are on sale for the June 26 show with the Rockford-based group best known for songs like "Surrender" and "I Want You to Want Me."

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Nielsen Is Celebrating 90 Years of Innovation

Isn’t it fascinating how a person can have a single idea or dream planted, take root and change the world as we know it? Well, that’s exactly how Nielsen came to be. This week, Nielsen will celebrate its 90th Anniversary.

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Sports Briefs

Lewis men's swimming used a 1-3 finish... Three Saints scored in double digits... Lewis University senior goalkeeper Mara Bennett was named...

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Dear EarthTalk: Plastic Bags

Dear EarthTalk: What’s the latest on efforts to ban plastic bags? How many U.S. locales have instituted some kind of ban, and have these initiatives made a dent in the amount of plastic litter?

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Pet of the Week

Ruger is a 3 year old Great Dane/Terrier mix male dog available for adoption.

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