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    • Essay: If only we listened when politicians were listening to scientists.
      Twenty-five years ago today, New Jersey Gov. Thomas Kean issued an executive order – one of those easily-forgotten proclamations destined to fade before the ink is dry on the signature line – warning of the Garden State's increasing vulnerability to climate-driven storms.
    • Why receipts and greasy fingers shouldn’t mix.
      An order of French fries may be bad for your health in ways that extend well beyond the outsize calorie count. According to a new study by scientists at the University of Missouri, people who used hand sanitizer, touched a cash register receipt and then ate French fries were quickly exposed to high levels of bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical widely used to coat […]
    • A Florida city voted to split the state in two because of concerns over climate change.
      The South Miami City Commission voted 3 to 2 for Florida's 23 southern counties to secede and form a new state named South Florida because of frustration over environmental issues and a lack of concern by state leaders.
    • Asthma complaints increase in wake of East Harlem explosion.
      A nonprofit health group in East Harlem says a sharp increase in referrals to its asthma program in the wake of last spring’s gas explosion in the neighborhood is raising concerns that the blast hurt the respiratory health of some residents.
    • China's coal use falls for first time this century, analysis suggests.
      The amount of coal being burned by China has fallen for the first time this century, according to an analysis. China’s booming coal in the last decade has been the major contributor to the fast-rising carbon emissions that drive climate change, making the first fall a significant moment.
    • Researchers say breathing toxic air in the first two years of life linked to autism.
      Pollution could be a factor in autism, researchers have found. They say children with autism spectrum disorder were more likely to have been exposed to higher levels of air toxics during their mothers' pregnancies and the first two years of life.
    • Maryland poultry farms fined for reporting lapses.
      Nearly one in five large Maryland chicken farms has been fined recently, state regulators have disclosed, because the growers failed to file information required annually outlining what they did to keep their flocks' waste from polluting the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.
    • Fracking companies using toxic benzene in drilling.
      Some oil and gas drillers are using benzene, which can cause cancer, in the mix of water and chemicals they shoot underground to free trapped hydrocarbons from shale rock, an environmental watchdog group said Wednesday.
    • Ice loss sends Alaskan temperatures soaring by 7C.
      If you doubt that parts of the planet really are warming, talk to residents of Barrow, the Alaskan town that is the most northerly settlement in the US. In the last 34 years, the average October temperature in Barrow has risen by more than 7°C − an increase that, on its own, makes a mockery of international efforts to prevent global temperatures from rising […]
    • Will coal exports kill the Great Barrier Reef?
      Stretching along the Queensland coast, the Great Barrier Reef is an underwater wonderland home to thousands of different fish and coral species. But it is facing multiple threats – from the crown-of-thorns to extreme weather and increased carbon in the atmosphere. And environmentalists say there's another major threat: coal.
    • Israel’s environmental health shows progress, but has much room for improvement, experts find.
      While Israel may have "an impressive array" of air quality monitoring stations throughout the country, the country's indoor air quality remains largely unregulated and demands more attention, a leading American toxicologist concludes in a new Health Ministry report.
    • Environmental groups ask EPA to study drinking water pollution from Wisconsin dairies.
      Citing a rash of contaminated wells in Kewaunee County, a coalition of environmental groups on Wednesday petitioned the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to use its emergency authority to investigate pollution of groundwater from dairy manure.
    • West Virginia chemical maker wary after ‘near-catastrophic’ fracking incident.
      As the Tomblin administration considers a plan to allow natural gas drilling under the Ohio River, a major chemical maker in Marshall County has been fighting a proposal for hydraulic fracturing near its plant, citing a “near-catastrophic” gas-well incident last year that may be linked to geologic conditions beneath the river.
    • DEP revokes water lab’s certification after guilty plea.
      West Virginia regulators have revoked the state certification for a Raleigh County laboratory, following the guilty plea of a lab supervisor who admitted he and other employees falsified coal industry samples so mining operations would appear to be in compliance with water pollution standards.
    • Corporations, advocacy groups spend big on ballot measures.
      Bonnie Marsh is worried that many of her neighbors’ health problems stem from big companies farming genetically modified crops around her in Maui County, Hawaii. So she helped collect enough signatures to put an initiative on the November ballot.
    • Critics of Dow herbicide sue US EPA over approval.
      A coalition of U.S. farmer and environmental groups filed a lawsuit on Wednesday seeking to overturn regulatory approval granted last week for an herbicide developed by Dow AgroSciences.
    • Milk grown in a lab is humane and sustainable. But can it catch on?
      The world's first test-tube hamburger has already been synthesized and cooked at a cost of more than $300,000. Now a pair of young bioengineers in Silicon Valley are trying to produce the first glass of artificial milk, without a cow and with the help of genetically-engineered yeast.
    • What if age is nothing but a mind-set?
      Psychologist Ellen Langer believes that one way to enhance well-being is to use placebos. Placebos aren’t just sugar pills disguised as medicine. Entire fields like psychoneuroimmunology and psychoendocrinology have emerged to investigate the relationship between psychological and physiological processes.
    • Hand sanitizer speeds absorption of BPA from receipts.
      Though BPA in plastics has borne the brunt of public and media attention, it may be the paper that is most worrisome. A new study published today has found that BPA is absorbed more quickly and extensively when people apply hand sanitizers before handling receipts.
    • Controversial chemical may leach into skin from cash receipts.
      Touching cash register receipts can dramatically increase your body's absorption of a potentially dangerous chemical, bisphenol A (BPA), researchers report. The chemical is found in products ranging from plastic water bottles and food-can linings. It is also used as a print developer in thermal paper for airline tickets and store and ATM receipts, accor […]

About us

This weblog is for the discussion of contemporary environmental public health issues – issues that may occur locally, nationally, or internationally. My name is Dr. Raymond W. Thron and I will be one of your hosts for this weblog. Joining me is Dr. Shana Morrell. Additional contributors and authors will be announced as they join. The commentaries reflect the opinions and beliefs of the individual writer. Your hosts will will attempt to ensure that all information posted is credible.

For any commentary, to see comments offered, please click on the commentary title, or on “comments” link at the end of the commentary.

Please note that all links in the commentaries were functional at the time the specific commentary was published. Links, however, do change. If you should encounter a non-functional link, do let me know. I will then try to find the new document location, if possible. Send a note to rwthron@yahoo.com

Thank you.

Raymond W. Thron, Ph.D.
Dr. Thron has had a life long career in environmental public health, having worked for both local and state agencies, the private sector, and currently as a faculty member at Walden University. At Walden University, he helped create and served as the first faculty chair for its doctorate program in public health. For ten years, he served as the director of environmental and occupational health for the State of Minnesota.

Previously he had the opportunity to work in several East European countries helping them regarding public health infrastructure, including environmental and occupational health issues, workforce development, and public health collaborative endeavors. Past academic affiliations include the University of Minnesota, University of St. Thomas (St. Paul, MN), Howard University, and through training provided to faculty at Namibia University, Namibia, and Kenyata University, Kenya.

Shana Morrell, Ph.D., MPH
Dr. Morrell received her MPH and Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota. She majored in environmental health, specializing in environmental toxicology. She currently is the Academic MPH Program Coordinator with Walden University, in the School of Health Sciences.  She maintains a special interest in global environmental health and environmental and social justice.

Mehrdad M. Javaherian, Ph.D., MPH

 Dr. Javaherian holds degrees in civil/environmental engineering and public health, and a PhD in public health focused on epidemiology. His current research is focused on quantitative assessment of the benefits of sustainable best management practices on carbon dioxide emission reductions, including potential health implications. His past research has included quantitative assessment of the association between the built environment and pedestrian activity, and on mathematical modeling of vapor intrusion to indoor air. Dr. Javaherian also has 19 years of consulting experience in the field of environmental health, including performing site investigations, human health and ecological risk assessments, and design and implementation of in-situ remediation technologies at hazardous waste sites. He is currently involved on research, development, and application of multiple patented green and sustainable technologies focused on generating renewable sources of energy, and achieving unrestricted soil and groundwater cleanup in a sustainable manner.

Nina M. Bell, MPH
Mrs. Bell has more than 20 years of experience in marketing and public relations, most of which encompass the healthcare arena. A resident of Northwestern Pennsylvania, she currently works as the Vice President of Stewardship and Development for The Wesbury Foundation, which supports a Continued Care Retirement Community of 400 aging adults.

In the realm of athletics, Mrs. Bell is a triathlete and completed five Ironman competitions as well as several Olympic and Sprint distance races. In 2000, she was named the ASCInet Ohio State Triathlon Series Age-Group Champion. She has also won her division in several regional races in Northwestern Pennsylvania/Eastern Ohio. In 2007, she was named the Ford Ironman Everyday Hero at Ironman Wisconsin for her work in developing a children’s bicycling program to combat childhood obesity. That program is being developed into a publication that will be used as a model for other communities.

She holds a BA degree in public relations/journalism from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, a master’s diploma from the University of London in organizational behavior, and is a Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE), a credential held by only 5,000 people worldwide. She is currently working toward her MPH and PhD in public health/health promotion and education at Walden University.

Return to the Environmental Public Health Today home posting page.

08 Feb 2010>

One Response

  1. Hello,
    I am a Walden University student, and I was to create a username and post my presentation on this weblog. However, I accidentally created a blog account rather than just obtain the username. I was wondering how exactly I would be able to contribute my presentation on here, or if I would need to create a different account.

    Thanks,

    Abe

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