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Pop culture, entertainment & all things Fresno

1980 Winter Games produce big ’80s moment

1980 US HOCKEY TEAMStarting April 14, the National Geographic Channel will present “The ’80s: The Decade That Made Us.” The six-part series, narrated by Rob Lowe, examines the politics, culture, technology and other elements that defined the 10 years.

When it comes to sports, one of the biggest moments came during the 1980 Winter Olympics, Lake Placid, N.Y. The world watched as a ragtag group of American hockey players defeated the Russians in what’s considered one of the biggest upsets in sports history. It’s still known as the “Miracle on Ice.”

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Fresno: The dirtiest city in the land, says Forbes

Forbes put out its “America’s Dirtiest Cities” list this morning, giving Fresno its “booby prize” for being the dirtiest and, in the process, not really telling us anything about our city that we didn’t already know.

Yes, Fresno has poor air quality. Yes, the water here isn’t the greatest — though Forbes uses a 10-year-old example when plenty has been written about the subject since then. From Forbes’ explainer:

The environmental degradation of the Central Valley has many contributing factors. First of all, its geography doesn’t do it any favors. It’s a big, long bowl surrounded on three sides by mountains that trap pollutants from cars and factories and oil fields in an inversion layer. Second, it’s a victim of what brought people there in the first place — rich fertile soils from which grow much of America’s fruits and vegetables. For decades farmers would burn leftover cuttings from their fields after the harvest — dumping massive amounts of lung-choking particulate matter into the air. Burning has been banned since 2004, and the air has gotten cleaner since then, but there’s still a long way to go.

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