Feature Channels: Environmental Health

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Released: 29-Sep-2020 11:50 AM EDT
Achieving clean air for all is possible
International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis

A new study shows that it is possible to achieve clean air worldwide with fundamental transformations of today’s practices in many sectors, supported by strong political will.

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Embargo will expire: 30-Sep-2020 8:00 AM EDT Released to reporters: 25-Sep-2020 10:05 AM EDT

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Released: 23-Sep-2020 1:55 PM EDT
First evidence that air pollution particles and metals are reaching the placenta
Queen Mary University of London

Pollution particles, including metals, have been found in the placentas of fifteen women in London, according to research led by Queen Mary University of London.

Released: 23-Sep-2020 1:05 PM EDT
UK lockdown and air pollution: Nitrogen dioxide halved but sulphur dioxide doubled
University of Liverpool

A University of Liverpool study of air pollution in the UK during the first 100 days of lockdown has revealed that whilst nitrogen oxide levels were cut by half, levels of sulphur dioxide increased by over 100%.

Released: 22-Sep-2020 10:00 AM EDT
COVID-19 Pandemic Highlights Urgent Need To Re-Examine Hazard Mitigation
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)

With many people stuck inside for months on end, the built environment has played a significant role in the COVID-19 pandemic. With support from a new National Science Foundation grant, a team of engineers and social scientists will study the ways in which that built environment mitigates or exacerbates the pandemic.

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Released: 17-Sep-2020 4:20 PM EDT
Study shows first proof that a safer UV light effectively kills virus causing COVID-19
Hiroshima University

A study conducted by Hiroshima University researchers found that using Ultraviolet C light with a wavelength of 222 nanometers which is safer to use around humans effectively kills SARS-CoV-2 -- the first research in the world to prove its efficacy against the virus that causes COVID-19.

Released: 16-Sep-2020 2:20 PM EDT
Researchers ask: how sustainable is your toothbrush?
Trinity College Dublin

Researchers at Trinity College Dublin have examined the sustainability of different models of the most commonly used oral health product - the toothbrush - to ascertain which is best for the planet and associated human health.

Released: 11-Sep-2020 9:00 AM EDT
Hazardous Air Pollutant Exposure Linked as Contributing Factor to COVID-19 Mortality in the United States
SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry

A study by researchers at the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) researchers and ProPublica, and published in Environmental Research Letters has found a link between chronic exposure to hazardous air pollutants (HAPS) and COVID-19 mortality rates.

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Released: 10-Sep-2020 10:40 AM EDT
Newswise Expert Panels on COVID-19 Pandemic: Notable excerpts, quotes and videos available

Newswise is hosting a series of Expert Panels discussion on unique aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic. This tip sheet includes some notable quotes from the panelists.

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Released: 8-Sep-2020 2:15 PM EDT
Lockdown did not reduce "most harmful" type of air pollution in Scotland
University of Stirling

The significant reduction in vehicle journeys during the COVID-19 lockdown did not reduce the level of toxic fine particles in Scotland's air, according to experts at the University of Stirling.

Released: 8-Sep-2020 12:45 PM EDT
Alliance for Consumer Education to Host Inaugural Clearing the Air Summit
Household and Commercial Products Association

This virtual event will explore the science and safety of air care products

Released: 4-Sep-2020 5:15 PM EDT
UCLA Fielding School of Public Health joins consortium to address environmental change and its health impacts
UCLA Fielding School of Public Health

The UCLA Fielding School of Public Health (FSPH) has joined the Planetary Health Alliance (PHA), a consortium of more than 200 universities, research institutes, and government agencies committed to understanding and addressing global environmental change and its health impacts.

Released: 4-Sep-2020 2:35 PM EDT
Wildfire Smoke May Increase Risk to COVID-19 Infection
University of Utah Health

Wildfires are becoming more common and severe due to climate change and warmer and drier conditions in the West. As wildfire season rages in the United States, people are also at increased risk for COVID-19 infection due to wildfire smoke.

Newswise: Researchers track COVID-19 in Athens wastewater
Released: 3-Sep-2020 3:20 PM EDT
Researchers track COVID-19 in Athens wastewater
University of Georgia

Researchers at the University of Georgia have developed a way to monitor the spread of COVID-19 in Athens using wastewater.

28-Aug-2020 10:00 AM EDT
The widespread footprint of blue jean microfibers
American Chemical Society (ACS)

Researchers reporting in ACS’ Environmental Science & Technology Letters have detected indigo denim microfibers not only in wastewater effluent, but also in lakes and remote Arctic marine sediments.

Newswise: Idle threat
Released: 1-Sep-2020 8:00 AM EDT
Idle threat
University of Utah

A team led by University of Utah chemical engineering assistant professor Kerry E. Kelly has received a $1.2 million National Science Foundation grant to design and test the viability of a real-time air pollution monitoring system and display for idling parked cars. The display would work similarly to dynamic speed limit displays in neighborhoods that monitor motorists' speed. In this case, these new displays would give feedback to drivers if air pollution rises due to idling.

Released: 26-Aug-2020 2:25 PM EDT
Pollution exposure at work may be associated with heart abnormalities among Latinx community
American Heart Association (AHA)

Hispanic/Latinx adults who are exposed to smoke from burning wood, vehicle exhaust, pesticides or metals at workplaces are more likely to have abnormalities of the heart structure and function that could lead to cardiovascular disease, according to new research published today in the Journal of the American Heart Association, an open access journal of the American Heart Association.

Released: 26-Aug-2020 1:30 PM EDT
Rensselaer Scholars Aim To Reimagine Engineering by Launching New Prize
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)

A new prize recognizing the work of engineers who promote social justice, human rights, peace, and environmental protection has launched with the help of two faculty members from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Newswise: Cleaning products used to stop spread of COVID may be harmful on their own, study finds
Released: 26-Aug-2020 9:50 AM EDT
Cleaning products used to stop spread of COVID may be harmful on their own, study finds
Indiana University

Cleaning and disinfecting have taken on new levels of seriousness in the wake of the global COVID-19 pandemic. But new research from Indiana University suggests that increased use of chemicals to help thwart the spread of the virus may pose health risks of their own.

Released: 25-Aug-2020 2:45 PM EDT
Treating COVID-19 could lead to increased antimicrobial resistance
University of Plymouth

The use of antibiotics in people with COVID-19 could result in increased resistance to the drugs' benefits among the wider population, a new study suggests.

Newswise: February lockdown in China caused a drop in some types of air pollution, but not others
Released: 20-Aug-2020 2:05 PM EDT
February lockdown in China caused a drop in some types of air pollution, but not others
University of Washington

Atmospheric nitrogen dioxide, which comes from transportation, was half of what would be expected over China in February 2020. Other emissions and cloud properties, however, showed no significant changes.

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Released: 20-Aug-2020 1:05 PM EDT
Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 spreads more indoors at low humidity
Leibniz Institute for Tropospheric Research (TROPOS)

The airborne transmission of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 via aerosol particles in indoor environment seems to be strongly influenced by relative humidity.

Released: 20-Aug-2020 11:05 AM EDT
New Research Shows Air Pollution Could Play a Role in Development of Cardiometabolic Diseases, Diabetes
University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center

Air pollution is the world’s leading environmental risk factor, and causes more than nine million deaths per year. New research published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation shows air pollution may play a role in the development of cardiometabolic diseases, such as diabetes. Importantly, the effects were reversible with cessation of exposure.

Newswise: Hackensack University Medical Center Recognized by Practice Greenhealth as One of the Top 25 Hospitals in the U.S. for Environmental Sustainability for the 7th Consecutive Year
Released: 19-Aug-2020 1:30 PM EDT
Hackensack University Medical Center Recognized by Practice Greenhealth as One of the Top 25 Hospitals in the U.S. for Environmental Sustainability for the 7th Consecutive Year
Hackensack Meridian Health

Hackensack Meridian Hackensack University Medical Center was recognized as one of Practice Greenhealth’s Top 25 Hospitals for Environmental Excellence for the seventh consecutive year. Hackensack University Medical Center is one of only three hospitals in the nation — and the only hospital in the tri-state area — to receive this prestigious recognition for the seventh year in a row.

Newswise: Bacteria Can Defuse Dangerous Chemical In Passaic River
Released: 19-Aug-2020 9:25 AM EDT
Bacteria Can Defuse Dangerous Chemical In Passaic River
Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Bacteria that can help defuse highly toxic dioxin in sediments in the Passaic River – a Superfund hazardous waste site – could eventually aid cleanup efforts at other dioxin-contaminated sites around the world, according to Rutgers scientists. Their research, published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, needs further work to realize the full potential of the beneficial bottom-dwelling microbes.

Newswise: Cold-weather accounts for almost all temperature-related deaths
Released: 18-Aug-2020 11:05 AM EDT
Cold-weather accounts for almost all temperature-related deaths
University of Illinois at Chicago

With the number of extreme weather days rising around the globe in recent years due to global warming, it is no surprise that there has been an upward trend in hospital visits and admissions for injuries caused by high heat over the last several years. But cold temperatures are responsible for almost all temperature-related deaths, according to a new study published in the journal Environmental Research.

Newswise: Low-Cost Home Air Quality Monitors Prove Useful for Wildfire Smoke
Released: 18-Aug-2020 7:00 AM EDT
Low-Cost Home Air Quality Monitors Prove Useful for Wildfire Smoke
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Published recently in the journal Sensors, a new study by Berkeley Lab air quality scientists tested four models of low-cost air quality monitors during actual wildfire pollution events and found that their readings of PM2.5 – or particulate matter under 2.5 microns, which has been linked to respiratory and cardiovascular issues – were consistently higher than the reference monitor used by the regulatory agencies; however, since each monitor had a relatively consistent response to the smoke, it is possible to use the readings to estimate true PM2.5 levels. Overall, the researchers concluded that the monitors can provide actionable information.

Released: 18-Aug-2020 6:05 AM EDT
Data omission in key EPA insecticide study shows need for critical review of industry analysis
University of Washington

For nearly 50 years, a statistical omission tantamount to data falsification sat undiscovered in a critical study at the heart of regulating one of the most controversial and widely used pesticides in America -- chlorpyrifos.

Released: 17-Aug-2020 3:55 PM EDT
Long-term exposure to traffic noise may impact weight gain in the UK population
University of Oxford

Transport noise is a major problem in Europe, with over 100 million people living in areas where road traffic noise exceeds levels greater than 55dB, the health-based threshold set by the EU.

Newswise: Regardless of trigger, ammonium nitrate was likely basis for Beirut explosion
Released: 17-Aug-2020 5:05 AM EDT
Regardless of trigger, ammonium nitrate was likely basis for Beirut explosion
Arizona State University (ASU)

Hazardous materials expert outlines safe handling of ammonium nitrate and likely causes of Beirut explosion

Released: 13-Aug-2020 1:05 PM EDT
Pollution linked to antibiotic resistance
University of Georgia

Antibiotic resistance is an increasing health problem, but new research suggests it is not only caused by the overuse of antibiotics. It’s also caused by pollution.

Newswise: Coronavirus transmission risk increases along wildlife supply chains
Released: 10-Aug-2020 2:05 PM EDT
Coronavirus transmission risk increases along wildlife supply chains

oronaviruses were detected in a high proportion of bats and rodents in Viet Nam from 2013 to 2014, with an increasing proportion of positive samples found along the wildlife supply chain from traders to large markets to restaurants, according to a study published August 10 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Amanda Fine of the Wildlife Conservation Society and colleagues.

Released: 10-Aug-2020 1:35 PM EDT
NAU scientists contribute to critical global study showing ‘best of the last’ tropical forests urgently need protection to mitigate climate change, safeguard human well-being
Northern Arizona University

Professor Scott Goetz, research professor Patrick Jantz and research associate Pat Burns of Northern Arizona University contributed to the study, published in Nature Ecology and Evolution, that found world’s “best of the last” tropical forests are at significant risk of being lost,

Released: 7-Aug-2020 1:25 PM EDT
Inconsistent EPA regulations increase lead poisoning risk to kids, study finds
Brown University

Two federal environmental standards regulating lead hazards in homes and child care facilities have different maximum thresholds, a discrepancy putting more than 35,000 kids in the United States at increased risk of lead poisoning.

Released: 7-Aug-2020 11:55 AM EDT
COVID recovery choices shape future climate
University of Leeds

A post-lockdown economic recovery plan that incorporates and emphasises climate-friendly choices could help significantly in the battle against global warming, according to a new study.

Newswise: New Science Behind Algae-based Flip-flops
Released: 6-Aug-2020 2:35 PM EDT
New Science Behind Algae-based Flip-flops
University of California San Diego

UC San Diego researchers formulated polyurethane foams, made from algae oil, to meet commercial specifications for midsole shoes and the foot-bed of flip-flops. Their latest result, in a series of recent research publications, offers a complete solution to the plastics problem—at least for polyurethanes.

Newswise: New paper addresses mix of contaminants in Fukushima wastewater, highlights risks of dumping in  ocean
6-Aug-2020 2:00 PM EDT
New paper addresses mix of contaminants in Fukushima wastewater, highlights risks of dumping in ocean
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Ten years after the Tohoku-oki earthquake and tsunami devastated Japan’s Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant, radiation levels have fallen in all but the waters closest to the plant. But a new hazard exists and is growing every day in the number of storage tanks on land surrounding the power plant that hold contaminated wastewater.

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