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Sample records for emerging environmental challenge

  1. EMERGING ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINANTS: ACHIEVEMENTS AND CHALLENGES WITH MASS SPECTROMETRY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Much has been achieved in the way of environmental protection over the last 30 years. However, as we learn more, new concerns arise. This presentation will discuss emerging contaminants that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other agencies are currently concerned...

  2. Environmental challenge

    SciTech Connect

    Conable, B.; Warford, J.; Partow, Z.; Lutz, E.; Munasinghe, M.

    1991-09-01

    The contents include the following: Development and the Environment: A Global Balance; Evolution of the World Bank's Environmental Policy; Accounting for the Environment; Public Policy and the Environment; Managing Drylands; Environmental Action Plans in Africa; Agroforestry in Sub-Saharan Africa; Irrigation and the Environmental Challenge; Curbing Pollution in Developing Countries; Global Warming and the Developing World; and The Global Environment Facility.

  3. The PBDEs: an emerging environmental challenge and another reason for breast-milk monitoring programs.

    PubMed Central

    Hooper, K; McDonald, T A

    2000-01-01

    Levels of the polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), a class of widely used flame retardants, appear to be rising rapidly in human tissues, as evidenced by studies of human breast milk. The case of the PBDEs illustrates the value of breast-milk monitoring programs in identifying important emerging pollutants, and highlights why such monitoring programs are needed in the United States. A review of the use, occurrence, and toxicity of PBDEs indicates many parallels between some PBDEs, PCBs, and other polyhalogenated persistent organic pollutants, and suggests that the PBDEs may be a significant environmental challenge in the future. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 PMID:10811563

  4. Addressing Emerging Risks: Scientific and Regulatory Challenges Associated with Environmentally Persistent Free Radicals

    PubMed Central

    Dugas, Tammy R.; Lomnicki, Slawomir; Cormier, Stephania A.; Dellinger, Barry; Reams, Margaret

    2016-01-01

    Airborne fine and ultrafine particulate matter (PM) are often generated through widely-used thermal processes such as the combustion of fuels or the thermal decomposition of waste. Residents near Superfund sites are exposed to PM through the inhalation of windblown dust, ingestion of soil and sediments, and inhalation of emissions from the on-site thermal treatment of contaminated soils. Epidemiological evidence supports a link between exposure to airborne PM and an increased risk of cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases. It is well-known that during combustion processes, incomplete combustion can lead to the production of organic pollutants that can adsorb to the surface of PM. Recent studies have demonstrated that their interaction with metal centers can lead to the generation of a surface stabilized metal-radical complex capable of redox cycling to produce ROS. Moreover, these free radicals can persist in the environment, hence their designation as Environmentally Persistent Free Radicals (EPFR). EPFR has been demonstrated in both ambient air PM2.5 (diameter < 2.5 µm) and in PM from a variety of combustion sources. Thus, low-temperature, thermal treatment of soils can potentially increase the concentration of EPFR in areas in and around Superfund sites. In this review, we will outline the evidence to date supporting EPFR formation and its environmental significance. Furthermore, we will address the lack of methodologies for specifically addressing its risk assessment and challenges associated with regulating this new, emerging contaminant. PMID:27338429

  5. Addressing Emerging Risks: Scientific and Regulatory Challenges Associated with Environmentally Persistent Free Radicals.

    PubMed

    Dugas, Tammy R; Lomnicki, Slawomir; Cormier, Stephania A; Dellinger, Barry; Reams, Margaret

    2016-01-01

    Airborne fine and ultrafine particulate matter (PM) are often generated through widely-used thermal processes such as the combustion of fuels or the thermal decomposition of waste. Residents near Superfund sites are exposed to PM through the inhalation of windblown dust, ingestion of soil and sediments, and inhalation of emissions from the on-site thermal treatment of contaminated soils. Epidemiological evidence supports a link between exposure to airborne PM and an increased risk of cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases. It is well-known that during combustion processes, incomplete combustion can lead to the production of organic pollutants that can adsorb to the surface of PM. Recent studies have demonstrated that their interaction with metal centers can lead to the generation of a surface stabilized metal-radical complex capable of redox cycling to produce ROS. Moreover, these free radicals can persist in the environment, hence their designation as Environmentally Persistent Free Radicals (EPFR). EPFR has been demonstrated in both ambient air PM2.5 (diameter < 2.5 µm) and in PM from a variety of combustion sources. Thus, low-temperature, thermal treatment of soils can potentially increase the concentration of EPFR in areas in and around Superfund sites. In this review, we will outline the evidence to date supporting EPFR formation and its environmental significance. Furthermore, we will address the lack of methodologies for specifically addressing its risk assessment and challenges associated with regulating this new, emerging contaminant. PMID:27338429

  6. Emerging infections: a perpetual challenge

    PubMed Central

    Morens, David M; Folkers, Gregory K; Fauci, Anthony S

    2008-01-01

    Emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases, and their determinants, have recently attracted substantial scientific and popular attention. HIV/AIDS, severe acute respiratory syndrome, H5N1 avian influenza, and many other emerging diseases have either proved fatal or caused international alarm. Common and interactive co-determinants of disease emergence, including population growth, travel, and environmental disruption, have been increasingly documented and studied. Are emerging infections a new phenomenon related to modern life, or do more basic determinants, transcending time, place, and human progress, govern disease generation? By examining a number of historically notable epidemics, we suggest that emerging diseases, similar in their novelty, impact, and elicitation of control responses, have occurred throughout recorded history. Fundamental determinants, typically acting in concert, seem to underlie their emergence, and infections such as these are likely to continue to remain challenges to human survival. PMID:18992407

  7. Nutritional psychiatry research: an emerging discipline and its intersection with global urbanization, environmental challenges and the evolutionary mismatch.

    PubMed

    Logan, Alan C; Jacka, Felice N

    2014-01-01

    In 21st-century public health, rapid urbanization and mental health disorders are a growing global concern. The relationship between diet, brain function and the risk of mental disorders has been the subject of intense research in recent years. In this review, we examine some of the potential socioeconomic and environmental challenges detracting from the traditional dietary patterns that might otherwise support positive mental health. In the context of urban expansion, climate change, cultural and technological changes and the global industrialization and ultraprocessing of food, findings related to nutrition and mental health are connected to some of the most pressing issues of our time. The research is also of relevance to matters of biophysiological anthropology. We explore some aspects of a potential evolutionary mismatch between our ancestral past (Paleolithic, Neolithic) and the contemporary nutritional environment. Changes related to dietary acid load, advanced glycation end products and microbiota (via dietary choices and cooking practices) may be of relevance to depression, anxiety and other mental disorders. In particular, the results of emerging studies demonstrate the importance of prenatal and early childhood dietary practices within the developmental origins of health and disease concept. There is still much work to be done before these population studies and their mirrored advances in bench research can provide translation to clinical medicine and public health policy. However, the clear message is that in the midst of a looming global epidemic, we ignore nutrition at our peril. PMID:25060574

  8. Nutritional psychiatry research: an emerging discipline and its intersection with global urbanization, environmental challenges and the evolutionary mismatch

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    In 21st-century public health, rapid urbanization and mental health disorders are a growing global concern. The relationship between diet, brain function and the risk of mental disorders has been the subject of intense research in recent years. In this review, we examine some of the potential socioeconomic and environmental challenges detracting from the traditional dietary patterns that might otherwise support positive mental health. In the context of urban expansion, climate change, cultural and technological changes and the global industrialization and ultraprocessing of food, findings related to nutrition and mental health are connected to some of the most pressing issues of our time. The research is also of relevance to matters of biophysiological anthropology. We explore some aspects of a potential evolutionary mismatch between our ancestral past (Paleolithic, Neolithic) and the contemporary nutritional environment. Changes related to dietary acid load, advanced glycation end products and microbiota (via dietary choices and cooking practices) may be of relevance to depression, anxiety and other mental disorders. In particular, the results of emerging studies demonstrate the importance of prenatal and early childhood dietary practices within the developmental origins of health and disease concept. There is still much work to be done before these population studies and their mirrored advances in bench research can provide translation to clinical medicine and public health policy. However, the clear message is that in the midst of a looming global epidemic, we ignore nutrition at our peril. PMID:25060574

  9. Identity and Culture: Theorizing Emergent Environmentalism.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dillon, Justin; Kelsey, Elin; Duque-Aristizabal, Ana Maria

    1999-01-01

    Examines the methodology and findings of the emergent environmentalism research project as reported in Environmental Education Research v4 n4. Challenges the ontological stance implicit in the research as well as explicit epistemology. (Author/CCM)

  10. Aircraft Emergencies: Challenge and Response

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burian, Barbara K.

    2010-01-01

    Emergency and abnormal situations in aviation present flight crews with a number of challenges. Checklists are essential tools that have been developed to assist them to meet these challenges. However, in order for checklists to be most effective in these situations they must be designed with the operational and situational demands of emergencies and abnormal conditions in mind as well as human performance capabilities and limitations under high stress and workload.

  11. Emerging Environmental Issues.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munn, Ted; Timmerman, Peter; Whyte, Anne

    2000-07-01

    Emerging environmental issues are issues that may someday be of concern but that have not yet been generally recognized. A review of such issues that have occurred over the last 50 years reveals that many of them have erupted rather suddenly (e.g., stratospheric ozone depletion, acid rain). However, some issues were recognized long ago by the scientific community (e.g., land degradation, overconsumption of freshwater), but for economic or other reasons governments have refused to act. The authors of this study were commissioned by the United Nations Environment Program and the Scientific Committee on Problems of the Environment to carry out a global survey of emerging environmental issues, using the responses received to questionnaires that were sent to scientists, managers, and policy makers around the world. It had been hoped that a short list of priority issues could be identified but the number of issues was very long. However, the issues could be divided into four major classes: 1) Transformations of old issues; continually evolving, and in most cases broadening, in response to increasing scientific and technological knowledge and to changing socioeconomic, cultural, and environmental conditions. 2) Policy issues, the long-term environmental consequences of which may already be of concern. 3) Accidents waiting to happen, for example, chemical time bombs. 4) Surprises in the nonlinear responses of ecosystems to new and different stresses, as well as in the nature of socioeconomic drivers of environmental change. In a subsequent study, the authors applied the lessons learned in the global study to an examination of emerging environmental issues in the province of Ontario, Canada.

  12. Diagnosis and management of environmental thoracic emergencies.

    PubMed

    Tourigny, Paul D; Hall, Chris

    2012-05-01

    Physiologic sequelae from increasing ambient pressure in underwater activities, decreasing ambient pressure while at altitude, or the consequences of drowning present a unique set of challenges to emergency physicians. In addition, several environmental toxins cause significant respiratory morbidity, whether they be pulmonary irritants, simple asphyxiants, or systemic toxins. It is important for emergency physicians to understand the pathophysiology of these illnesses as well as to apply this knowledge to the clinical arena either in the prehospital setting or in the emergency department. Current treatment paradigms and controversies within these regimens are discussed. PMID:22487116

  13. Environmental epidemiology: challenges and opportunities.

    PubMed Central

    Pekkanen, J; Pearce, N

    2001-01-01

    Epidemiology is struggling increasingly with problems with correlated exposures and small relative risks. As a consequence, some scholars have strongly emphasized molecular epidemiology, whereas others have argued for the importance of the population context and the reintegration of epidemiology into public health. Environmental epidemiology has several unique features that make these debates especially pertinent to it. The very large number of environmental exposures require prioritization, and the relative risks are usually very low. Furthermore, many environmental exposures can be addressed only by comparing populations rather than individuals, and the disruption of both local and global ecosystems requires us to develop new methods of study design. The population context is also very important to consider in risk management decisions because of the involuntary nature of most environmental exposures and the diversity of possible outcomes, both health- and nonhealth-related. Studies at the individual or molecular level tend to focus the research hypotheses and subsequent interventions at that level, even when research and interventions at other levels may be more appropriate. Thus, only by starting from the population and ecosystem levels can we ensure that these are given appropriate consideration. Although better research is needed at all levels, it is crucially important to choose the most appropriate level, or levels, of research for a particular problem. Only by conducting research at all these levels and by developing further methods to combine evidence from these different levels can we hope to address the challenges facing environmental epidemiology today. PMID:11171517

  14. Emerging Biometric Modalities: Challenges and Opportunities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gafurov, Davrondzhon

    Recent advances in sensor technology and wide spread use of various electronics (computers, PDA, mobile phones etc.) provide new opportunities for capturing and analyses of novel physiological and behavioural traits of human beings for biometric authentication. This paper presents an overview of several such types of human characteristics that have been proposed as alternatives to traditional types of biometrics. We refer to these characteristics as emerging biometrics. We survey various types of emerging modalities and techniques, and discuss their pros and cons. Emerging biometrics faces several limitations and challenges which include subject population coverage (focusing mostly on adults); unavailability of benchmark databases; little research with respect to vulnerability/robustness against attacks; and some privacy concerns they may arise. In addition, recognition performance of emerging modalities are generally less accurate compared to the traditional biometrics. Despite all of these emerging biometrics posses their own benefits and advantages compared to traditional biometrics which makes them still attractive for research. First of all, emerging biometrics can always serve as a complementary source for identity information; they can be suitable in applications where traditional biometrics are difficult or impossible to adapt such as continuous or periodic re-verification of the user's identity etc.

  15. Environmental challenge as a geologist

    SciTech Connect

    Hanson, B.M.

    1994-12-31

    Many scientific environmental studies involving geology are now becoming apparent. If we can convince the regulatory agencies to take advantage of our geologic knowledge to assess environmental problems, many unnecessary mandates can be modified. Isn`t it strange that Mt. Erebus in the Antarctic pumps over 1,000 tons of chlorine directly into the vortex of the earth every day and has for over 100 years? Yet man and CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons) are being blamed for the ozone hole and global warming. Recent ice cores have been recovered in Greenland which date back 250,000 years in time. This scientific study indicated that the climate in the northern hemisphere has always been cyclic. The United States Geological Survey has recently completed a study of the Exxon Valdes oil spill and has found Monterey oil residues are more prevalent than the North Slope oil. The Monterey oil is present as a result of the 1994 Alaska earthquake. Also current activity by fishing boats is polluting much of the Prince William Sound. Geologists have studied the effects of road deicing in the northeast and have reported that there is substantial evidence that the millions of tons of salt placed on the highways are contributing to underground water pollution. Yet the oil industry is being challenged by environmental groups that putting produced salt water back into disposal wells is contaminating and polluting the country. We need a level playing field. How can all this help a petroleum geologist? To be competitive in today`s business, we must take advantage of opportunities to learn about other sub-disciplines of our profession. Many geologists are in a survival mode, and additional education and training are necessary if we are to survive. Technical transfers from hydrocarbon extraction to environmental assessment can be undertaken if there is a desire to change. Reeducation can be achieved by an optimistic, aggressive and disciplined individual.

  16. Emerging Environmental Contaminants: What’s New

    EPA Science Inventory

    Much has been achieved in the way of environmental protection over the last 30 years. However, as we learn more, new concerns arise (including potential adverse health effects, bioaccumulation, and widespread distribution). This presentation will discuss emerging environmental c...

  17. EMERGING ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINANTS AND CURRENT ISSUES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Much has been achieved in the way of environmental protection over the last 30 years. However, as we learn more, new concerns arise. This presentation will discuss emerging environmental contaminants that the U.S. EPA and other agencies are currently concerned about. Emerging c...

  18. Nanotechnology risk perceptions and communication: emerging technologies, emerging challenges.

    PubMed

    Pidgeon, Nick; Harthorn, Barbara; Satterfield, Terre

    2011-11-01

    Nanotechnology involves the fabrication, manipulation, and control of materials at the atomic level and may also bring novel uncertainties and risks. Potential parallels with other controversial technologies mean there is a need to develop a comprehensive understanding of processes of public perception of nanotechnology uncertainties, risks, and benefits, alongside related communication issues. Study of perceptions, at so early a stage in the development trajectory of a technology, is probably unique in the risk perception and communication field. As such it also brings new methodological and conceptual challenges. These include: dealing with the inherent diversity of the nanotechnology field itself; the unfamiliar and intangible nature of the concept, with few analogies to anchor mental models or risk perceptions; and the ethical and value questions underlying many nanotechnology debates. Utilizing the lens of social amplification of risk, and drawing upon the various contributions to this special issue of Risk Analysis on Nanotechnology Risk Perceptions and Communication, nanotechnology may at present be an attenuated hazard. The generic idea of "upstream public engagement" for emerging technologies such as nanotechnology is also discussed, alongside its importance for future work with emerging technologies in the risk communication field. PMID:22084861

  19. Advocacy evaluation: challenges and emerging trends.

    PubMed

    Devlin-Foltz, David; Fagen, Michael C; Reed, Ehren; Medina, Robert; Neiger, Brad L

    2012-09-01

    Devising, promoting, and implementing changes in policies and regulations are important components of population-level health promotion. Whether advocating for changes in school meal nutrition standards or restrictions on secondhand smoke, policy change can create environments conducive to healthier choices. Such policy changes often result from complex advocacy efforts that do not lend themselves to traditional evaluation approaches. In a challenging fiscal environment, allocating scarce resources to policy advocacy may be particularly difficult. A well-designed evaluation that moves beyond inventorying advocacy activities can help make the case for funding advocacy and policy change efforts. Although it is one thing to catalog meetings held, position papers drafted, and pamphlets distributed, it is quite another to demonstrate that these outputs resulted in useful policy change outcomes. This is where the emerging field of advocacy evaluation fits in by assessing (among other things) strategic learning, capacity building, and community organizing. Based on recent developments, this article highlights several challenges advocacy evaluators are currently facing and provides new resources for addressing them. PMID:22773623

  20. Exploring new forage options to address emerging dietary and environmental challenges in dairy forage systems: reducing excessive weight gain in dairy replacement heifers fed a corn-silage based diet

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Dairy and forage producers are always facing new challenges. One of these challenges is to find forages that meet the specific nutritional needs of livestock at different stages of growth or production. In an effort to provide new and improved forage options to meet these emerging challenges, the U....

  1. Emerging Challenges and "Weird" Models in Hydrogeology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carrera, J.

    2015-12-01

    Hydrogeological research and practice have dealt in recent years with problems related to groundwater quantity and quality. Models have been used for water flow, solute transport and, at most, chemical reactions, which were required to address issues such as water resources assessment, artificial recharge, seawater intrusion, impact of public works, and the like. "Weird" (i.e., outside the mainstream practical hydrogeology, restricted to academy) models were virtually restricted to spatial variability of permeability and the problems it imposed on transport (i.e., scale dependence of dispersivity, mixing, etc.). Yet, a broad gap has grown between academy and practical hydrogeology. Energy demands have created a new suite of problems that need to be solved to address CO2 storage, shale gas impacts or enhanced geothermal systems. These require solving mechanical and thermal equations. We contend, and will use example from our own work for illustration, that (1) these problems are not so new (hydrogeologists started working on them some 40 years ago), (2) hydrogeological tools are as needed to solve energy problems as they were for water problems (permeability remains the key parameter for most of them), (3) collaboration with sister Earth Sciences remains essential (the problems are highly coupled and no one can master all disciplines involved). The real challenge is not so much whether hydrogeology can address these problems, it can, as whether hydrogeologists can reduce the gap between academy and practice, which will be strongly stretched by these emerging problems.

  2. Health impact assessment in China: Emergence, progress and challenges

    SciTech Connect

    Huang Zheng

    2012-01-15

    The values, concepts and approaches of health impact assessment (HIA) were outlined in the Gothenburg consensus paper and some industrialized countries have implemented HIA for many years. HIA has played an important role in environmental protection in China, however, the emergence, progress and challenges of HIA in China have not been well described. In this paper, the evolution of HIA in China was analyzed and the challenges of HIA were presented based on the author's experiences. HIA contributed to decision-making for large capital construction projects, such as the Three Gorges Dam project, in its emergence stage. Increasing attention has been given to HIA in recent years due to supportive policies underpinning development of the draft HIA guidelines in 2008. However enormous challenges lie ahead in ensuring the institutionalization of HIA into project, program and policy decision-making process due to limited scope, immature tools and insufficient professionals in HIA practice. HIA should broaden its horizons by encompassing physical, chemical, biological and socio-economic aspects and constant attempts should be made to integrate HIA into the decision-making process, not only for projects and programs but also for policies as well.

  3. Challenges for Environmental Education Planners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Childress, Ronald B.; Wert, Jonathan

    1976-01-01

    This article summarizes the issues confronting environmental education planners. The major problems are lack of comprehensive planning and effective leadership, failure to analyze causes of problems and to develop constructive action to provide solutions, and shortage of valid and reliable instruments to measure program effectiveness. (MR)

  4. CHALLENGES FOR THE FUTURE IN ENVIRONMENTAL MUTAGENESIS

    EPA Science Inventory

    CHALLENGES FOR THE FUTURE IN ENVIRONMENTAL MUTAGENESIS
    Michael D. Waters
    US Environmental Protection Agency, MD-51A, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711 USA

    Our rapidly growing understanding of the structure of the human genome is forming the basis for numerous new...

  5. Addressing the challenges of emerging infectious disease.

    PubMed

    Pinner, R W

    1996-01-01

    Through the recent examples of diphtheria in the former Soviet Union, plague in India, and trends in pneumonia mortality in the United States, the author, in this article, illustrates issues in emerging infectious diseases. The Centers for Disease Control's plan, Addressing Emerging Infectious Disease Threats: A Prevention Strategy for the United States, is summarized. Initial efforts to implement this plan are described, with particular focus on the development of Emerging Infections Programs, which are conducting epidemiologic and laboratory projects on several infectious diseases, including invasive bacterial diseases, unexplained deaths, foodborne diseases, and ehrlichiosis in four population-based sites in the United States. PMID:8571983

  6. Emerging health issues: the widening challenge for population health promotion.

    PubMed

    McMichael, Anthony J; Butler, Colin D

    2006-12-01

    The spectrum of tasks for health promotion has widened since the Ottawa Charter was signed. In 1986, infectious diseases still seemed in retreat, the potential extent of HIV/AIDS was unrecognized, the Green Revolution was at its height and global poverty appeared less intractable. Global climate change had not yet emerged as a major threat to development and health. Most economists forecast continuous improvement, and chronic diseases were broadly anticipated as the next major health issue. Today, although many broadly averaged measures of population health have improved, many of the determinants of global health have faltered. Many infectious diseases have emerged; others have unexpectedly reappeared. Reasons include urban crowding, environmental changes, altered sexual relations, intensified food production and increased mobility and trade. Foremost, however, is the persistence of poverty and the exacerbation of regional and global inequality. Life expectancy has unexpectedly declined in several countries. Rather than being a faint echo from an earlier time of hardship, these declines could signify the future. Relatedly, the demographic and epidemiological transitions have faltered. In some regions, declining fertility has overshot that needed for optimal age structure, whereas elsewhere mortality increases have reduced population growth rates, despite continuing high fertility. Few, if any, Millennium Development Goals (MDG), including those for health and sustainability, seem achievable. Policy-makers generally misunderstand the link between environmental sustainability (MDG #7) and health. Many health workers also fail to realize that social cohesion and sustainability--maintenance of the Earth's ecological and geophysical systems--is a necessary basis for health. In sum, these issues present an enormous challenge to health. Health promotion must address population health influences that transcend national boundaries and generations and engage with the

  7. Emerging arboviruses and public health challenges in Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Lima-Camara, Tamara Nunes

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Environmental modification by anthropogenic actions, disordered urban growth, globalization of international exchange and climate change are some factors that help the emergence and dissemination of human infectious diseases transmitted by vectors. This review discusses the recent entry of three arboviruses in Brazil: Chikungunya, West Nile, and Zika virus, focusing on the challenges for the Country’s public health. The Brazilian population is exposed to infections caused by these three arboviruses widely distributed on the national territory and associated with humans. Without effective vaccine and specific treatment, the maintainance and integration of a continuos entomological and epidemiological surveillance are important so we can set methods to control and prevent these arboviruses in the Country. PMID:27355468

  8. Dynamic Environmental Photosynthetic Imaging Reveals Emergent Phenotypes.

    PubMed

    Cruz, Jeffrey A; Savage, Linda J; Zegarac, Robert; Hall, Christopher C; Satoh-Cruz, Mio; Davis, Geoffry A; Kovac, William Kent; Chen, Jin; Kramer, David M

    2016-06-22

    Understanding and improving the productivity and robustness of plant photosynthesis requires high-throughput phenotyping under environmental conditions that are relevant to the field. Here we demonstrate the dynamic environmental photosynthesis imager (DEPI), an experimental platform for integrated, continuous, and high-throughput measurements of photosynthetic parameters during plant growth under reproducible yet dynamic environmental conditions. Using parallel imagers obviates the need to move plants or sensors, reducing artifacts and allowing simultaneous measurement on large numbers of plants. As a result, DEPI can reveal phenotypes that are not evident under standard laboratory conditions but emerge under progressively more dynamic illumination. We show examples in mutants of Arabidopsis of such "emergent phenotypes" that are highly transient and heterogeneous, appearing in different leaves under different conditions and depending in complex ways on both environmental conditions and plant developmental age. These emergent phenotypes appear to be caused by a range of phenomena, suggesting that such previously unseen processes are critical for plant responses to dynamic environments. PMID:27336966

  9. Challenges for lupus management in emerging countries.

    PubMed

    Tazi Mezalek, Zoubida; Bono, Wafaa

    2014-06-01

    In emerging countries, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) has been associated with several unfavorable outcomes including disease activity, damage accrual, work disability and mortality. Poor socioeconomic status (SES) and lack of access to healthcare, especially in medically underserved communities, may be responsible for many of the observed disparities. Diagnostic delay of SLE or for severe organ damages (renal involvement) have a negative impact on those adverse outcomes in lupus patients who either belong to minority groups or live in emerging countries. Longitudinal and observational prospective studies and registries may help to identify the factors that influence poor SLE outcomes in emerging countries. Infection is an important cause of mortality and morbidity in SLE, particularly in low SES patients and tuberculosis appears to be frequent in SLE patients living in endemic areas (mainly emerging countries). Thus, tuberculosis screening should be systematically performed and prophylaxis discussed for patients from these areas. SLE treatment in the developing world is restricted by the availability and cost of some immunosuppressive drugs. Moreover, poor adherence has been associated to bad outcomes in lupus patients with a higher risk of flares, morbidity, hospitalization, and poor renal prognosis. Low education and the lack of money are identified as the main barrier to improve lupus prognosis. Newer therapeutic agents and new protocols had contributed to improve survival in SLE. The use of corticoid-sparing agents (hydroxychloroquine, methotrexate, azathioprine and mycophenolate mofetif) is one of the most useful strategy; availability of inexpensive generics may help to optimize access to these medications. PMID:24857588

  10. Emerging Policy Challenges in Intellectual Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fujiura, Glenn T.; Parish, Susan L.

    2007-01-01

    The forces shaping intellectual disability policy-making are diverse; while many of the policy issues reviewed in this issue are specific to intellectual disabilities, there are others that transcend disability-specific concerns. Our review is organized around six emerging demographic and socio-cultural trends that may directly and profoundly…

  11. Emerging Challenges for Community Colleges. ERIC Digest.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schuetz, Pam

    This digest is drawn from the spring 2002 issue of New Directions for Community Colleges, titled "Next Steps for the Community College." It summarizes three overlapping challenges facing colleges in the coming decade: educating a more diverse student body, assessing student outcomes, and maintaining the educated workforce needed to meet the…

  12. Aging with HIV: Responding to an Emerging Challenge

    MedlinePlus

    ... Stay Connected You are here Home Aging with HIV: Responding to an emerging challenge September 30, 2013 ... with HIV. New frontiers in medical management of HIV/AIDS Several NIA and NIH-wide initiatives support ...

  13. Aptamer based electrochemical sensors for emerging environmental pollutants

    PubMed Central

    Hayat, Akhtar; Marty, Jean L.

    2014-01-01

    Environmental contaminants monitoring is one of the key issues in understanding and managing hazards to human health and ecosystems. In this context, aptamer based electrochemical sensors have achieved intense significance because of their capability to resolve a potentially large number of problems and challenges in environmental contamination. An aptasensor is a compact analytical device incorporating an aptamer (oligonulceotide) as the sensing element either integrated within or intimately associated with a physiochemical transducer surface. Nucleic acid is well known for the function of carrying and passing genetic information, however, it has found a key role in analytical monitoring during recent years. Aptamer based sensors represent a novelty in environmental analytical science and there are great expectations for their promising performance as alternative to conventional analytical tools. This review paper focuses on the recent advances in the development of aptamer based electrochemical sensors for environmental applications with special emphasis on emerging pollutants. PMID:25019067

  14. Aptamer based electrochemical sensors for emerging environmental pollutants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hayat, Akhtar; Marty, Jean Louis

    2014-06-01

    Environmental contaminants monitoring is one of the key issues in understanding and managing hazards to human health and ecosystems. In this context, aptamer based electrochemical sensors have achieved intense significance because of their capability to resolve a potentially large number of problems and challenges in environmental contamination. An aptasensor is a compact analytical device incorporating an aptamer (oligonulceotide) as the sensing element either integrated within or intimately associated with a physiochemical transducer surface. Nucleic acid is well known for the function of carrying and passing genetic information, however, it has found a key role in analytical monitoring during recent years. Aptamer based sensors represent a novelty in environmental analytical science and there are great expectations for their promising performance as alternative to conventional analytical tools. This review paper focuses on the recent advances in the development of aptamer based electrochemical sensors for environmental applications with special emphasis on emerging pollutants.

  15. Nine challenges in modelling the emergence of novel pathogens

    PubMed Central

    Lloyd-Smith, James O.; Funk, Sebastian; McLean, Angela R.; Riley, Steven; Wood, James L.N.

    2015-01-01

    Studying the emergence of novel infectious agents involves many processes spanning host species, spatial scales, and scientific disciplines. Mathematical models play an essential role in combining insights from these investigations and drawing robust inferences from field and experimental data. We describe nine challenges in modelling the emergence of novel pathogens, emphasizing the interface between models and data. PMID:25843380

  16. Emerging Respiratory Viruses: Challenges and Vaccine Strategies

    PubMed Central

    Gillim-Ross, Laura; Subbarao, Kanta

    2006-01-01

    The current threat of avian influenza to the human population, the potential for the reemergence of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)-associated coronavirus, and the identification of multiple novel respiratory viruses underline the necessity for the development of therapeutic and preventive strategies to combat viral infection. Vaccine development is a key component in the prevention of widespread viral infection and in the reduction of morbidity and mortality associated with many viral infections. In this review we describe the different approaches currently being evaluated in the development of vaccines against SARS-associated coronavirus and avian influenza viruses and also highlight the many obstacles encountered in the development of these vaccines. Lessons learned from current vaccine studies, coupled with our increasing knowledge of the host and viral factors involved in viral pathogenesis, will help to increase the speed with which efficacious vaccines targeting newly emerging viral pathogens can be developed. PMID:17041137

  17. Learning through Work: Emerging Perspectives and New Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Billett, Stephen; Choy, Sarojni

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: This paper aims to consider and appraise current developments and emerging perspectives on learning in the circumstances of work, to propose how some of the challenges for securing effective workplace learning may be redressed. Design/methodology/approach: First, new challenges and perspectives on learning in the circumstances of work are…

  18. Assessing public health emergency preparedness: concepts, tools, and challenges.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Christopher; Lurie, Nicole; Wasserman, Jeffrey

    2007-01-01

    Policymakers are increasingly seeking to determine whether the federal government's recent investments in public health preparedness have left the public health system better prepared to respond to large-scale public health emergencies. Yet, there remain questions about how to define "public health emergency preparedness," how much preparedness is enough, and how preparedness can be measured and assessed. This chapter identifies the key challenges associated with measuring public health preparedness and reviews approaches currently in use. We also identify some emerging measurement techniques that might help address some of these challenges. PMID:17129174

  19. Planning environmental sanitation programmes in emergencies.

    PubMed

    Harvey, Peter A; Reed, Robert A

    2005-06-01

    Environmental sanitation programmes are vital for tackling environmental-related disease and ensuring human dignity in emergency situations. If they are to have maximum impact they must be planned in a rapid but systematic manner. An appropriate planning process comprises five key stages: rapid assessment and priority setting; outline programme design; immediate action; detailed programme design; and implementation. The assessment should be based on carefully selected data, which are analysed via comparison with suitable minimum objectives. How the intervention should be prioritised is determined through objective ranking of different environmental sanitation sector needs. Next, a programme design outline is produced to identify immediate and longer-term intervention activities and to guarantee that apposite resources are made available. Immediate action is taken to meet acute emergency needs while the detailed programme design takes shape. This entails in-depth consultation with the affected community and comprehensive planning of activities and resource requirements. Implementation can then begin, which should involve pertinent management and monitoring strategies. PMID:15910646

  20. Emerging Opportunities and Challenges in Cancer Immunotherapy.

    PubMed

    Whiteside, Theresa L; Demaria, Sandra; Rodriguez-Ruiz, Maria E; Zarour, Hassane M; Melero, Ignacio

    2016-04-15

    Immunotherapy strategies against cancer are emerging as powerful weapons for treatment of this disease. The success of checkpoint inhibitors against metastatic melanoma and adoptive T-cell therapy with chimeric antigen receptor T cells against B-cell-derived leukemias and lymphomas are only two examples of developments that are changing the paradigms of clinical cancer management. These changes are a result of many years of intense research into complex and interrelated cellular and molecular mechanisms controling immune responses. Promising advances come from the discovery of cancer mutation-encoded neoantigens, improvements in vaccine development, progress in delivery of cellular therapies, and impressive achievements in biotechnology. As a result, radical transformation of cancer treatment is taking place in which conventional cancer treatments are being integrated with immunotherapeutic agents. Many clinical trials are in progress testing potential synergistic effects of treatments combining immunotherapy with other therapies. Much remains to be learned about the selection, delivery, and off-target effects of immunotherapy used alone or in combination. The existence of numerous escape mechanisms from the host immune system that human tumors have evolved still is a barrier to success. Efforts to understand the rules of immune cell dysfunction and of cancer-associated local and systemic immune suppression are providing new insights and fuel the enthusiasm for new therapeutic strategies. In the future, it might be possible to tailor immune therapy for each cancer patient. The use of new immune biomarkers and the ability to assess responses to therapy by noninvasive monitoring promise to improve early cancer diagnosis and prognosis. Personalized immunotherapy based on individual genetic, molecular, and immune profiling is a potentially achievable future goal. The current excitement for immunotherapy is justified in view of many existing opportunities for harnessing

  1. Emerging Technologies for Environmental Remediation: Integrating Data and Judgment.

    PubMed

    Bates, Matthew E; Grieger, Khara D; Trump, Benjamin D; Keisler, Jeffrey M; Plourde, Kenton J; Linkov, Igor

    2016-01-01

    Emerging technologies present significant challenges to researchers, decision-makers, industry professionals, and other stakeholder groups due to the lack of quantitative risk, benefit, and cost data associated with their use. Multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) can support early decisions for emerging technologies when data is too sparse or uncertain for traditional risk assessment. It does this by integrating expert judgment with available quantitative and qualitative inputs across multiple criteria to provide relative technology scores. Here, an MCDA framework provides preliminary insights on the suitability of emerging technologies for environmental remediation by comparing nanotechnology and synthetic biology to conventional remediation methods. Subject matter experts provided judgments regarding the importance of criteria used in the evaluations and scored the technologies with respect to those criteria. The results indicate that synthetic biology may be preferred over nanotechnology and conventional methods for high expected benefits and low deployment costs but that conventional technology may be preferred over emerging technologies for reduced risks and development costs. In the absence of field data regarding the risks, benefits, and costs of emerging technologies, structuring evidence-based expert judgment through a weighted hierarchy of topical questions may be helpful to inform preliminary risk governance and guide emerging technology development and policy. PMID:26580228

  2. [Environmental management: critical analysis, scenarios and challenges].

    PubMed

    Porto, Marcelo Firpo de Souza; Schütz, Gabriel Eduardo

    2012-06-01

    This article discusses the limits, alternatives and challenges of environmental management in contemporary globalized capitalist societies. It is based on a critical analysis supported by authors from social sciences, political ecology and public health. To this end, we systematize the meaning of hegemonic environmental management in terms of eco-efficiency and its limits to tackle environmental risks and construct democratic processes and societies. We developed four ideal scenarios involving possible combinations of environmental management and democracy. This model served as a base, together with academic studies and the theoretical and militant experience of the authors, for a reflection on the current characteristics and future trends of environmental management and democracy, with emphasis on the reality of Latin America, specifically Brazil. Lastly, we discuss possibilities for social transformation taking into consideration the contradictions and emancipatory alternatives resulting from confrontations between hegemonic tendencies of the market and counter-hegemonic utopias and social movements. The latter assume principles of environmental justice, economic solidarity, agro-ecology and sustainability as well as the construction of new epistemologies. PMID:22699636

  3. Epigenetics and arterial hypertension: the challenge of emerging evidence.

    PubMed

    Friso, Simonetta; Carvajal, Cristian A; Fardella, Carlos E; Olivieri, Oliviero

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetic phenomena include DNA methylation, post-translational histone modifications, and noncoding RNAs, as major marks. Although similar to genetic features of DNA for their heritability, epigenetic mechanisms differ for their potential reversibility by environmental and nutritional factors, which make them potentially crucial for their role in complex and multifactorial diseases. The function of these mechanisms is indeed gaining interest in relation to arterial hypertension (AH) with emerging evidence from cell culture and animal models as well as human studies showing that epigenetic modifications have major functions within pathways related to AH. Among epigenetic marks, the role of DNA methylation is mostly highlighted given the primary role of this epigenetic feature in mammalian cells. A lower global methylation was observed in DNA of peripheral blood mononuclear cells of hypertensive patients. Moreover, DNA hydroxymethylation appears modifiable by salt intake in a Dahl salt-sensitive rat model. The specific function of DNA methylation in regulating the expression of AH-related genes at promoter site was described for hydroxysteroid (11-beta) dehydrogenase 2 (HSD11B2), somatic angiotensin converting enzyme (sACE), Na+/K+/2Cl- cotransporter 1 (NKCC1), angiotensinogen (AGT), α-adducin (ADD1), and for other crucial genes in endocrine hypertension. Post-translational histone methylation at different histone 3 lysine residues was also observed to control the expression of genes related to AH as lysine-specific demethylase-1(LSD1), HSD11B2, and epithelial sodium channel subunit α (SCNN1A). Noncoding RNAs including several microRNAs influence genes involved in steroidogenesis and the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone pathway. In the present review, the current knowledge on the relationship between the main epigenetic marks and AH will be presented, considering the challenge of epigenetic patterns being modifiable by environmental factors that may lead toward

  4. Integrated Safety, Environmental, & Emergency Management Systems (ISEEMS)

    SciTech Connect

    Silver, R.; Langwell, G.; Thomas, C.; Coffing, S.

    1996-05-01

    Sandia`s Risk Management and NEPA Department recognized the need for hazard and environmental data analysis and management to support the line managers` need to know, understand, manage and document the hazards inherent in their facilities and activities. ISEEMS (Integrated Safety, Environmental, & Emergency Management System) was developed in response to this need. ISEEMS takes advantage of the fact that there is some information needed for the NEPA process that is also needed for the safety documentation process. The ISEEMS process enables Sandia to identify and manage hazards and environmental concerns at a level of effort commensurate with the hazards themselves by adopting a necessary and sufficient (graded) approach to compliance. The Preliminary Hazard Screening module of ISEEMS determines the facility or project activity hazard classification and facility designation. ISEEMS` geo-referenced icon allows immediate, visual integration of hazard information across geographic boundaries resulting in significant information compression. At Sandia, ISEEMS runs on the Sandia Internal Restricted Network, in an MS-Windows environment on standard PC hardware. The possibility of transporting ISEEMS to a ``WEB-like`` environment is being explored.

  5. Nanopharmaceuticals: Tiny challenges for the environmental risk assessment of pharmaceuticals.

    PubMed

    Berkner, Silvia; Schwirn, Kathrin; Voelker, Doris

    2016-04-01

    Many new developments and innovations in health care are based on nanotechnology. The field of nanopharmaceuticals is diverse and not as new as one might think; indeed, nanopharmaceuticals have been marketed for many years, and the future is likely to bring more nanosized compounds to the market. Therefore, it is time to examine whether the environmental risk assessment for human pharmaceuticals is prepared to assess the exposure, fate, and effects of nanopharmaceuticals in an adequate way. Challenges include the different definitions for nanomaterials and nanopharmaceuticals, different regulatory frameworks, the diversity of nanopharmaceuticals, the scope of current regulatory guidelines, and the applicability of test protocols. Based on the current environmental risk assessment for human medicinal products in the European Union, necessary adaptations for the assessment procedures and underlying study protocols are discussed and emerging solutions identified. Environ Toxicol Chem 2016;35:780-787. © 2015 The Authors. Environmental Toxicology & Chemistry published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of SETAC. PMID:25931425

  6. Engagement and Uncertainty: Emerging Technologies Challenge the Work of Engagement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eaton, Weston; Wright, Wynne; Whyte, Kyle; Gasteyer, Stephen P.; Gehrke, Pat J.

    2014-01-01

    Universities' increasing applications of science and technology to address a wide array of societal problems may serve to thwart democratic engagement strategies. For emerging technologies, such challenges are particularly salient, as knowledge is incomplete and application and impact are uncertain or contested. Insights from science and…

  7. Exploring Interoperability as a Multidimensional Challenge for Effective Emergency Response

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Santisteban, Hiram

    2010-01-01

    Purpose. The purpose of this research was to further an understanding of how the federal government is addressing the challenges of interoperability for emergency response or crisis management (FEMA, 2009) by informing the development of standards through the review of current congressional law, commissions, studies, executive orders, and…

  8. Hydrocomplexity: Addressing water security and emergent environmental risks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumar, Praveen

    2015-07-01

    Water security and emergent environmental risks are among the most significant societal concerns. They are highly interlinked to other global risks such as those related to climate, human health, food, human migration, biodiversity loss, urban sustainability, etc. Emergent risks result from the confluence of unanticipated interactions from evolving interdependencies between complex systems, such as those embedded in the water cycle. They are associated with the novelty of dynamical possibilities that have significant potential consequences to human and ecological systems, and not with probabilities based on historical precedence. To ensure water security we need to be able to anticipate the likelihood of risk possibilities as they present the prospect of the most impact through cascade of vulnerabilities. They arise due to a confluence of nonstationary drivers that include growing population, climate change, demographic shifts, urban growth, and economic expansion, among others, which create novel interdependencies leading to a potential of cascading network effects. Hydrocomplexity aims to address water security and emergent risks through the development of science, methods, and practices with the potential to foster a "Blue Revolution" akin to the Green revolution for food security. It blends both hard infrastructure based solution with soft knowledge driven solutions to increase the range of planning and design, management, mitigation and adaptation strategies. It provides a conceptual and synthetic framework to enable us to integrate discovery science and engineering, observational and information science, computational and communication systems, and social and institutional approaches to address consequential water and environmental challenges.

  9. The Role of Spatial Information Systems in Environmental Emergency Management.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mondschein, Lawrence G.

    1994-01-01

    Reviews the use of spatial data and information technology by environmental managers and emergency responders. Discussion includes environmental legislation, the Toxic Chemical Release Inventory (TRI) database, public access to environmental information, information standardization problems, emergency response software development and a case study…

  10. Challenges to professionalism: Social accountability and global environmental change.

    PubMed

    Pearson, David; Walpole, Sarah; Barna, Stefi

    2015-01-01

    This article explores the concept of professionalism as it relates to social change and social accountability, and expands on them in the light of global environmental changes. Professionalism in medicine includes concepts of altruism, service, professional knowledge, self-regulation and autonomy. Current dialogues around social accountability suggest that medical schools should re-orientate their strategy and desired education, research and service outcomes to the health needs of the communities they serve.This article addresses the following questions: • How do we reconcile ideas of medical professionalism with the demands of creating a more equal, just, sustainable and socially inclusive society? • What new challenges do or will we face in relation to environmental degradation, biodiversity loss, ecosystem health and climate change? • How can medical schools best teach social and environmental responsiveness within a framework of professionalism? • How do medical schools ensure that tomorrow's doctors possess the knowledge, skills and attitude to adapt to the challenges they will face in future roles?We offer ideas about why and how medical educators can change, recommendations to strengthen the teaching of professionalism and social accountability and suggestions about the contribution of an emerging concept, that of "environmental accountability". PMID:26030377

  11. 2008 Meeting in Germany: Emerging Environmental Contaminants and Current Issues

    EPA Science Inventory

    This presentation will discuss emerging environmental contaminants that are currently of concern to the U.S. EPA and to other agencies. Emerging contaminants include drinking water disinfection by-products (DBPs), perfluorinated chemicals, pharmaceuticals, flame retardants, benzo...

  12. Emerging arboviruses and public health challenges in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Lima-Camara, Tamara Nunes

    2016-06-27

    Environmental modification by anthropogenic actions, disordered urban growth, globalization of international exchange and climate change are some factors that help the emergence and dissemination of human infectious diseases transmitted by vectors. This review discusses the recent entry of three arboviruses in Brazil: Chikungunya, West Nile, and Zika virus, focusing on the challenges for the Country's public health. The Brazilian population is exposed to infections caused by these three arboviruses widely distributed on the national territory and associated with humans. Without effective vaccine and specific treatment, the maintainance and integration of a continuos entomological and epidemiological surveillance are important so we can set methods to control and prevent these arboviruses in the Country. RESUMO A modificação do ambiente por ações antrópicas, o crescimento urbano desordenado, o processo de globalização do intercâmbio internacional e as mudanças climáticas são alguns fatores que vêm facilitando a emergência e disseminação de doenças infecciosas humanas transmitidas por vetores. Este comentário aborda a recente entrada de três arbovírus no Brasil, Chikungunya (CHIKV), West Nile (WNV) e Zika (ZIKV), com enfoque nos desafios para a Saúde Pública do País. Transmitidos por mosquitos vetores amplamente distribuídos no território nacional e associados ao homem, a população brasileira encontra-se exposta à infecção por esses três arbovírus. Na ausência de vacina eficaz e tratamento específico, são importantes a manutenção e integração de uma vigilância entomológica e epidemiológica contínua, a fim de direcionarmos métodos de controle e prevenção contra essas arboviroses no País. PMID:27355468

  13. MEETING IN CHINA: EMERGING ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINANTS AND CURRENT ISSUES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Much has been achieved in the way of environmental protection over the last 30 years. However, as we learn more, new concerns arise (including potential adverse health effects, bioaccumulation, and widespread distribution). This presentation will discuss emerging environmental c...

  14. MEETING IN NEW ZEALAND: EMERGING ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINANTS AND CURRENT ISSUES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Much has been achieved in the way of environmental protection over the last 30 years. However, as we learn more, new concerns arise (including potential adverse health effects, bioaccumulation, and widespread distribution). This presentation will discuss emerging environmental c...

  15. MEETING IN GERMANY: EMERGING ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINANTS AND CURRENT ISSUES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Much has been achieved in the way of environmental protection over the last 30 years. However, as we learn more, new concerns arise (including potential adverse health effects, bioaccumulation, and widespread distribution). This presentation will discuss emerging environmental c...

  16. Environmental Mass Spectrometry: Emerging Contaminants and Current Issues (2010 Review)

    EPA Science Inventory

    This biennial review covers developments in environmental mass spectrometry for emerging environmental contaminants over the period of 2008-2009. A few significant references that appeared between January and February 2010 are also included. Analytical Chemistry’s current polic...

  17. MEETING IN CANADA: EMERGING ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINANTS AND CURRENT ISSUES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Much has been achieved in the way of environmental protection over the last 30 years. However, as we learn more, new concerns arise (including potential adverse health effects, bioaccumulation, and widespread distribution). This presentation will discuss emerging environmental co...

  18. Emerging Systems of Systems for Environmental Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Middleton, D. E.; Fox, P.; Cinquini, L.; Burek, M.

    2007-05-01

    The scientific research community increasingly has complex, difficult questions to ask of its observations and model results - questions that will increasingly span disparate datasets, multiple disciplines, and international boundaries. Our future information systems are going to need to satisfy these growing demands. GEOSS, the Global Earth Observing System of Systems, puts forth a compelling vision in this area. Solid steps in the direction of this vision are already well underway, moving us towards the next generation of global, federated environmental data systems. For example, last year the World Meteorological Organization demonstrated its first prototype for WIS, the WMO Information System. WIS is a step in the direction of GEOSS, providing a federated system that provides aggregation of environmental data and services at national and regional levels, combined with a small number of redundant peer systems that can service large-scale geographical regions. Forming a foundational layer for efforts like WIS, the global community is in the process of building other systems of systems that essentially aggregate and integrate the output of data and modeling efforts, in areas such as weather, climate, space physics, and many others. This encouraging trend towards federation of new and existing systems is driven by scientific needs and underpinned by shared technology, interfaces, protocols, metadata standards, and the world of Grid computing. NCAR, working with many partners, is contributing to a number of projects that are focused upon some of these challenges. In this presentation we will describe a suite of complimentary and interconnected efforts, including the Earth System Grid (climate), the Community Data Portal (and WIS connections), TIGGE (weather), the Virtual Solar Terrestrial Observatory, and related metadata thrusts. The main emphasis here is the pursuit of systems of systems as well as progress towards semantic integration, which will be very

  19. Clinical conundrums and challenges during geriatric orthopedic emergency surgeries

    PubMed Central

    Bajwa, Sukhminder Jit Singh

    2015-01-01

    Despite so many advancements and innovations in anesthetic techniques, expectations and challenges have also grown in plenty. Cardiac, pediatric, obstetric and neuro-anesthesia have perfectly developed to fulfill the desired needs of respective patient population. However, geriatric anesthesia has been shown a lesser interest in teaching and clinical practices over the years as compared with other anesthetic sub-specialties. The large growing geriatric population globally is also associated with an increase number of elderly patients presenting for orthopedic emergency surgeries. Orthopedic emergency surgery in geriatric population is not only a daunting clinical challenge but also has numerous socio-behavioral and economic ramifications. Decision making in anesthesia is largely influenced by the presence of co-morbidities, neuro-cognitive functions and the current socio-behavioral status. Pre-anesthetic evaluation and optimization are extremely important for a better surgical outcome but is limited by time constraints during emergency surgery. The current review aims to highlight comprehensively the various clinical, social, behavioral and psychological aspects during pre-anesthetic evaluation associated with emergency orthopedic surgery in geriatric population. PMID:25810963

  20. Emerging challenges in implementing universal health coverage in Asia.

    PubMed

    Bredenkamp, Caryn; Evans, Timothy; Lagrada, Leizel; Langenbrunner, John; Nachuk, Stefan; Palu, Toomas

    2015-11-01

    As countries in Asia converge on the goal of universal health coverage (UHC), some common challenges are emerging. One is how to ensure coverage of the informal sector so as to make UHC truly universal; a second is how to design a benefit package that is responsive and appropriate to current health challenges, yet fiscally sustainable; and a third is how to ensure "supply-side readiness", i.e. the availability and quality of services, which is a necessary condition for translating coverage into improvements in health outcomes. Using examples from the Asia region, this paper discusses these three challenges and how they are being addressed. On the first challenge, two promising approaches emerge: using general revenues to fully cover the informal sector, or employing a combination of tax subsidies, non-financial incentives and contributory requirements. The former can produce fast results, but places pressure on government budgets and may induce informality, while the latter will require a strong administrative mandate and systems to track the ability-to-pay. With respect to benefit packages, we find considerable variation in the nature and rigor of processes underlying the selection and updating of the services included. Also, in general, packages do not yet focus sufficiently on non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and related preventive outpatient care. Finally, there are large variations and inequities in the supply-side readiness, in terms of availability of infrastructure, equipment, essential drugs and staffing, to deliver on the promises of UHC. Health worker competencies are also a constraint. While the UHC challenges are common, experience in overcoming these challenges is varied and many of the successes appear to be highly context-specific. This implies that researchers and policymakers need to rigorously, and regularly, assess different approaches, and share these findings across countries in Asia - and across the world. PMID:26271404

  1. Emerging infectious diseases in southeast Asia: regional challenges to control.

    PubMed

    Coker, Richard J; Hunter, Benjamin M; Rudge, James W; Liverani, Marco; Hanvoravongchai, Piya

    2011-02-12

    Southeast Asia is a hotspot for emerging infectious diseases, including those with pandemic potential. Emerging infectious diseases have exacted heavy public health and economic tolls. Severe acute respiratory syndrome rapidly decimated the region's tourist industry. Influenza A H5N1 has had a profound effect on the poultry industry. The reasons why southeast Asia is at risk from emerging infectious diseases are complex. The region is home to dynamic systems in which biological, social, ecological, and technological processes interconnect in ways that enable microbes to exploit new ecological niches. These processes include population growth and movement, urbanisation, changes in food production, agriculture and land use, water and sanitation, and the effect of health systems through generation of drug resistance. Southeast Asia is home to about 600 million people residing in countries as diverse as Singapore, a city state with a gross domestic product (GDP) of US$37,500 per head, and Laos, until recently an overwhelmingly rural economy, with a GDP of US$890 per head. The regional challenges in control of emerging infectious diseases are formidable and range from influencing the factors that drive disease emergence, to making surveillance systems fit for purpose, and ensuring that regional governance mechanisms work effectively to improve control interventions. PMID:21269678

  2. Emerging approaches, challenges and opportunities in life cycle assessment.

    PubMed

    Hellweg, Stefanie; Milà i Canals, Llorenç

    2014-06-01

    In the modern economy, international value chains--production, use, and disposal of goods--have global environmental impacts. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) aims to track these impacts and assess them from a systems perspective, identifying strategies for improvement without burden shifting. We review recent developments in LCA, including existing and emerging applications aimed at supporting environmentally informed decisions in policy-making, product development and procurement, and consumer choices. LCA constitutes a viable screening tool that can pinpoint environmental hotspots in complex value chains, but we also caution that completeness in scope comes at the price of simplifications and uncertainties. Future advances of LCA in enhancing regional detail and accuracy as well as broadening the assessment to economic and social aspects will make it more relevant for producers and consumers alike. PMID:24904154

  3. Integrated Environmental Modelling: human decisions, human challenges

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Glynn, Pierre D.

    2015-01-01

    Integrated Environmental Modelling (IEM) is an invaluable tool for understanding the complex, dynamic ecosystems that house our natural resources and control our environments. Human behaviour affects the ways in which the science of IEM is assembled and used for meaningful societal applications. In particular, human biases and heuristics reflect adaptation and experiential learning to issues with frequent, sharply distinguished, feedbacks. Unfortunately, human behaviour is not adapted to the more diffusely experienced problems that IEM typically seeks to address. Twelve biases are identified that affect IEM (and science in general). These biases are supported by personal observations and by the findings of behavioural scientists. A process for critical analysis is proposed that addresses some human challenges of IEM and solicits explicit description of (1) represented processes and information, (2) unrepresented processes and information, and (3) accounting for, and cognizance of, potential human biases. Several other suggestions are also made that generally complement maintaining attitudes of watchful humility, open-mindedness, honesty and transparent accountability. These suggestions include (1) creating a new area of study in the behavioural biogeosciences, (2) using structured processes for engaging the modelling and stakeholder communities in IEM, and (3) using ‘red teams’ to increase resilience of IEM constructs and use.

  4. Scientific Solutions to Nuclear Waste Environmental Challenges

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, Bradley R.

    2014-01-30

    The Hidden Cost of Nuclear Weapons The Cold War arms race drove an intense plutonium production program in the U.S. This campaign produced approximately 100 tons of plutonium over 40 years. The epicenter of plutonium production in the United States was the Hanford site, a 586 square mile reservation owned by the Department of Energy and located on the Colombia River in Southeastern Washington. Plutonium synthesis relied on nuclear reactors to convert uranium to plutonium within the reactor fuel rods. After a sufficient amount of conversion occurred, the rods were removed from the reactor and allowed to cool. They were then dissolved in an acid bath and chemically processed to separate and purify plutonium from the rest of the constituents in the used reactor fuel. The acidic waste was then neutralized using sodium hydroxide and the resulting mixture of liquids and precipitates (small insoluble particles) was stored in huge underground waste tanks. The byproducts of the U.S. plutonium production campaign include over 53 million gallons of high-level radioactive waste stored in 177 large underground tanks at Hanford and another 34 million gallons stored at the Savannah River Site in South Carolina. This legacy nuclear waste represents one of the largest environmental clean-up challenges facing the world today. The nuclear waste in the Hanford tanks is a mixture of liquids and precipitates that have settled into sludge. Some of these tanks are now over 60 years old and a small number of them are leaking radioactive waste into the ground and contaminating the environment. The solution to this nuclear waste challenge is to convert the mixture of solids and liquids into a durable material that won't disperse into the environment and create hazards to the biosphere. What makes this difficult is the fact that the radioactive half-lives of some of the radionuclides in the waste are thousands to millions of years long. (The half-life of a radioactive substance is the amount

  5. Emerging Water Contaminants: Technical, Legal and Policy Challenges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deeb, R. A.; Kresic, N.; Laugier, M. C.; Kavanaugh, M. C.

    2002-12-01

    Approximately 120 new chemicals are created each year due to ever-improving industry and technology markets. Releases of new contaminants into the environment can occur during production, use and disposal of these chemicals thereby leading to potential contamination of water supply sources. Very few emerging contaminants are regulated. In addition, knowledge gaps regarding emerging contaminants include lack health effects, occurrence (either because these compounds are not measured or because concentrations are below detection limits of readily available analytical techniques) and fate and transport in the environment especially with regards to mobility and persistence. The sources of these compounds are numerous. One source is treated wastewater, which is re-injected into groundwater aquifers for indirect potable reuse purposes. Emerging compounds of concern can be classified in various classes. This presentation will focus on contaminants, which have emerged in the last 10 years including pharmaceuticals (antibiotics/drugs), personal care products (polycyclic musks), pesticides/herbicides, industrial solvents (1,4-dioxane), gasoline additives (MTBE), disinfection byproducts such as NDMA (N-nitrosodimethylamine), and inorganic compounds such as perchlorate and arsenic. This presentation will present technical, legal and legislative challenges posed by the presence of these contaminants in water. Background information including chemical's history of use, sources in the environments, nationwide occurrence, physical and chemical properties, behavior in the environment and technologies for removal from soil and water will be presented. In addition, case studies on MTBE, pharmaceuticals and personal care products, 1,4-dioxane, arsenic and NDMA will be discussed.

  6. Metrology and Characterization Challenges for Emerging Research Materials and Devices

    SciTech Connect

    Garner, C. Michael; Herr, Dan; Obeng, Yaw

    2011-11-10

    The International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS) Emerging Research Materials (ERM) and Emerging Research Devices (ERD) Technology Workgroups have identified materials and devices that could enable continued increases in the density and performance of future integrated circuit (IC) technologies and the challenges that must be overcome; however, this will require significant advances in metrology and characterization to enable progress. New memory devices and beyond CMOS logic devices operate with new state variables (e.g., spin, redox state, etc.) and metrology and characterization techniques are needed to verify their switching mechanisms and scalability, and enable improvement of operation of these devices. Similarly, new materials and processes are needed to enable these new devices. Additionally, characterization is needed to verify that the materials and their interfaces have been fabricated with required quality and performance.

  7. The Challenge of Aviation Emergency and Abnormal Situations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burian, Barbara K.; Barshi, Immanuel; Dismukes, Key

    2005-01-01

    Emergency and abnormal situations occur on flights everyday around the world. They range from minor situations readily managed to extremely serious and highly time-critical situations that deeply challenge the skills of even the most effective crews. How well crews respond to these situations is a function of several interacting sets of issues: (1) the design of non-normal procedures and checklists, (2) design of aircraft systems and automation, (3) specific aspects of the non-normal situation, such as time criticality and complexity of the situation, (4) human performance capabilities and cognitive limitations under high workload and stress, (5) design of training for non-normal situations, (6) philosophies, policies and practices within the industry, and (7) economic and regulatory constraints. Researchers and pilots working on NASA's Emergency and Abnormal Situations project are addressing these issues in a long-range study. In this paper we discuss these issues and illustrate them with examples from recent incidents and accidents.

  8. Metrology and Characterization Challenges for Emerging Research Materials and Devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garner, C. Michael; Herr, Dan; Obeng, Yaw

    2011-11-01

    The International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS) Emerging Research Materials (ERM) and Emerging Research Devices (ERD) Technology Workgroups have identified materials and devices that could enable continued increases in the density and performance of future integrated circuit (IC) technologies and the challenges that must be overcome; however, this will require significant advances in metrology and characterization to enable progress. New memory devices and beyond CMOS logic devices operate with new state variables (e.g., spin, redox state, etc.) and metrology and characterization techniques are needed to verify their switching mechanisms and scalability, and enable improvement of operation of these devices. Similarly, new materials and processes are needed to enable these new devices. Additionally, characterization is needed to verify that the materials and their interfaces have been fabricated with required quality and performance.

  9. Environmental Microbial Community Proteomics: Status, Challenges and Perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Da-Zhi; Kong, Ling-Fen; Li, Yuan-Yuan; Xie, Zhang-Xian

    2016-01-01

    Microbial community proteomics, also termed metaproteomics, is an emerging field within the area of microbiology, which studies the entire protein complement recovered directly from a complex environmental microbial community at a given point in time. Although it is still in its infancy, microbial community proteomics has shown its powerful potential in exploring microbial diversity, metabolic potential, ecological function and microbe-environment interactions. In this paper, we review recent advances achieved in microbial community proteomics conducted in diverse environments, such as marine and freshwater, sediment and soil, activated sludge, acid mine drainage biofilms and symbiotic communities. The challenges facing microbial community proteomics are also discussed, and we believe that microbial community proteomics will greatly enhance our understanding of the microbial world and its interactions with the environment. PMID:27527164

  10. Environmental Microbial Community Proteomics: Status, Challenges and Perspectives.

    PubMed

    Wang, Da-Zhi; Kong, Ling-Fen; Li, Yuan-Yuan; Xie, Zhang-Xian

    2016-01-01

    Microbial community proteomics, also termed metaproteomics, is an emerging field within the area of microbiology, which studies the entire protein complement recovered directly from a complex environmental microbial community at a given point in time. Although it is still in its infancy, microbial community proteomics has shown its powerful potential in exploring microbial diversity, metabolic potential, ecological function and microbe-environment interactions. In this paper, we review recent advances achieved in microbial community proteomics conducted in diverse environments, such as marine and freshwater, sediment and soil, activated sludge, acid mine drainage biofilms and symbiotic communities. The challenges facing microbial community proteomics are also discussed, and we believe that microbial community proteomics will greatly enhance our understanding of the microbial world and its interactions with the environment. PMID:27527164

  11. Current Domain Challenges in the Emergency Response Community

    SciTech Connect

    Barr, Jonathan L.; Peddicord, Annie M Boe; Burtner, Edwin R.; Mahy, Heidi A.

    2011-05-08

    This paper describes the development of a framework targeted to technology providers in order to better understand the grand domain challenges of the emergency response and management community (EM). In developing this framework, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory researchers interviewed subject matter experts (SMEs) across the EM domain and corroborated these findings with current literature. We are currently examining relationships and dependencies within the framework. A thorough understanding of these gaps and dependencies will allow for a more informed approach prioritizing research, developing tools, and applying technology to enhance performance in the EM community.

  12. Offshore oil spill response practices and emerging challenges.

    PubMed

    Li, Pu; Cai, Qinhong; Lin, Weiyun; Chen, Bing; Zhang, Baiyu

    2016-09-15

    Offshore oil spills are of tremendous concern due to their potential impact on economic and ecological systems. A number of major oil spills triggered worldwide consciousness of oil spill preparedness and response. Challenges remain in diverse aspects such as oil spill monitoring, analysis, assessment, contingency planning, response, cleanup, and decision support. This article provides a comprehensive review of the current situations and impacts of offshore oil spills, as well as the policies and technologies in offshore oil spill response and countermeasures. Correspondingly, new strategies and a decision support framework are recommended for improving the capacities and effectiveness of oil spill response and countermeasures. In addition, the emerging challenges in cold and harsh environments are reviewed with recommendations due to increasing risk of oil spills in the northern regions from the expansion of the Arctic Passage. PMID:27393213

  13. ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES OF ENVIRONMENTAL ENDOCRINE DISRUPTOR MONITORING

    EPA Science Inventory

    Reported increases in the incidence of endocrine-related conditions have led to speculation about environmental causes. Environmental scientists are focusing increased research effort into understanding the mechanisms by which endocrine disruptors affect human and ecological h...

  14. Environmental Justice Challengers for Ecosystem Service Valuation

    EPA Science Inventory

    In pursuing improved ecosystem services management, there is also an opportunity to work towards environmental justice. The practice of environmental valuation can assist with both goals, but as typically employed obscures distributional analysis. Furthermore, valuation technique...

  15. Environmental forensic research for emerging contaminants in complex environmental matrices

    EPA Science Inventory

    The United States Environmental Protection Agency has established criteria to address many of the significant traditional pollutants demonstrated to have adverse affects on environmental quality. However, new chemicals are being created almost daily, and these new chemicals, as ...

  16. Environmental Measurements in an Emergency: This is not a Drill

    SciTech Connect

    Musolino, Stephen V.; Clark, Harvey; McCullough, Thomas; Pemberton, Wendy

    2012-05-01

    A real-world event such as the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant presented unique challenges in data collection, analysis, and assessment. While emergency responders from the Department of Energy (DOE) are trained regularly to assess the environmental consequences of a radiological or nuclear incident, real-world complexities are difficult or impossible to simulate in such training. The Japan event sharply deviated in several ways and in the very early stages, accurate plume and deposition model predictions were difficult to produce due to the lack of field monitoring data and other information. In addition, there was much less plant monitoring data, essentially no reactor state information, and the meteorological conditions and releases were much more complex. Inevitably, the measurements in Japan presented technical challenges to assessors tasked with ensuring the quality of the finished assessments and data products for government officials, the responder community, and the public. This paper addresses some of the operational real-world complexities; procedures, measurements, or radiological assessments from the Fukushima response are not in the purview of this paper.

  17. Emergency surgery in the elderly: challenges and solutions

    PubMed Central

    Torrance, Andrew D W; Powell, Susan L; Griffiths, Ewen A

    2015-01-01

    Elderly patients frequently present with surgical emergencies to health care providers, and outcomes in this group of patients remain poor. Contributing factors include frailty, preexisting comorbidity, polypharmacy, delayed diagnosis, and lack of timely and consultant-led treatment. In this review, we address common emergency surgical presentations in the elderly and highlight the specific challenges in caring for these patients. We summarize 20 years of reports by various medical bodies that have aimed to improve the care of these patients. To improve morbidity and mortality, several aspects of care need to be addressed. These include accurate and timely preoperative assessment to identify treatable pathology and, where possible, to consider and correct age-specific disease processes. Identification of patients in whom treatment would be futile or associated with high risk is needed to avoid unnecessary interventions and to give patients and carers realistic expectations. The use of multidisciplinary teams to identify common postoperative complications and age-specific syndromes is paramount. Prevention of complications is preferable to rescue treatment due to the high proportion of patients who fail to recover from adverse events. Even with successful surgical treatment, long-term functional decline and increased dependency are common. More research into emergency surgery in the elderly is needed to improve care for this growing group of vulnerable patients. PMID:27147891

  18. Savannah River Plant emergency response: Environmental transport and assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Addis, R.P.

    1988-01-01

    The ability to evaluate rapidly the possible consequences of inadvertent releases of hazardous pollutants to the environment is vital for the safe operation of most industrial plants. The Savannah River Plant has developed an emergency response system which integrates environmental observations and computer predictions to provide relevant, reliable, and timely information to decision makers. Experience has shown that the interdependence of all components of an emergency response system requires that the system must be well integrated and coordinated. Research and development is an integral component of the Emergency Response Program. It is designed to increase knowledge of environmental transport and diffusion, and to develop technologies to improve the emergency response system. This paper describes the SRP emergency response system, discusses the importance of reliability through system integration, and indicates the role played by research and development in maintaining a vital emergency response system. 10 refs., 7 figs.

  19. China's environmental protection: challenges and countermeasures.

    PubMed

    1993-10-01

    The following suggestions are made to improve environmental quality in China: control population growth, develop ecofarming, protect biodiversity, explore new energy sources, practice safe and sustainable consumption, adopt an efficient strategy for use of natural resources, use industrial production to maintain sustainable development, strengthen management, guide urbanization, and increase international cooperation. The environmental problems are identified as the low use of industrial technology for preventing undesirable waste or emissions, increased sewage discharges in rural areas, water pollution, increased acid rain, increased pollution from solid waste and toxic chemicals, soil erosion and desertification, and agricultural pollution from chemical fertilizers. Environmental pollution is the result of economic development. Economic development should, therefore, take responsibility for the solutions. Current funding for environmental protection is an inadequate 0.67% of the gross national product. Environmental management needs to be strengthened, given greater priority, and balanced with sustainable development. The entire population should be made aware of the importance of protecting the environment. Progress has been made in increasing cultivated forest preserves, in decreasing discharges of wastes into the water, and in decreasing noise pollution. 1098 districts in 216 cities meet environmental noise control standards. The 1991 environmental protection staff consisted of 71,000 persons who were employed in 2199 monitoring stations for soot control, 61 natural reserves, and 6400 environmental pollution projects. A total investment of 1.74 billion RMB yuan was invested in environmental pollution control projects. Environmental quality has been maintained at 1980 standards, and further environmental pollution has been avoided. Atmospheric pollution in the third quarter of 1991 in large and medium-sized cities was 0.067 to 0.450 milligrams per cubic meter

  20. EDITORIAL: The need and challenge for Environmental Research Letters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kammen, Daniel M.

    2006-11-01

    Why another journal? This is the inevitable question that every effort to launch a new journal must, and should, address. A common statistic in the business world is that nine out of ten new restaurants fail. In the academic world something similar, but less definitive, can happen: a potentially interesting, but practically flawed, effort can be launched, never truly build an intellectual community, but then continue as a sub-critical, little-known journal for far too long. The challenge any new publication, academic or professional, faces is thus extreme. A new journal must find a way to usefully compete, and bring new value, in the face of multiple existing outlets for significant results, tremendous barriers to establishing a 'track record' or 'name recognition' against existing publications, and a print and a cyberspace increasingly desperate in the search for 'content', scientific or otherwise. In the case of Environmental Research Letters (ERL), however, these questions answered themselves and, as a result, I cannot imagine a more critically needed new publication. Indeed, the goal of ERL is to be more than simply one more good new journal. It is to be a place—both physical and online—that those engaged in environmental issues—from researchers within the physical and natural sciences, to those concerned with applied systems studies, modeling and simulation techniques, practical engagement in environmental activism, and developing, conducting or critiquing policy, legal, or business efforts—will all want to go to read, and to engage with colleagues. The environmental field has witnessed an incredible intellectual and professional proliferation. The areas of ecological resilience, global change science, policy, law and economics, industrial ecology, green buildings, environmental genomics, environmental archaeology, and the sociology of environmental movements have become increasingly regarded and, to varying degrees, recognized themselves as major

  1. Environmental Exposures and Children's Health Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Landrigan, Philip J.

    2005-01-01

    The author looks at the sharp increase in a number of childhood disorders--including asthma, certain cancers, and learning/behavioral disabilities--and the role environmental toxins may play in this increase. He describes the need to train many more health professionals in prenatal and children's environmental health and the national network of…

  2. ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMISTRY: EMERGING CONTAMINANTS AND CURRENT ISSUES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Much has been achieved in the way of environmental protection over the last 30 years. However, as we learn more, new concerns arise. This presentation will discuss chemical and microbial contaminants that the U.S. EPA and other agencies are currently concerned about. In this gr...

  3. ENVIRONMENTAL CONSIDERATION FOR EMERGING COPPER WINNING PROCESSES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Fourteen processes for the production of copper were examined to evaluate their potential environmental impact, economics and energy requirements relative to reverberatory smelting as commonly practices in the U.S. Because of limitations in data available for more recent process ...

  4. Using Environmental Print to Enhance Emergent Literacy and Print Motivation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Neumann, Michelle M.; Hood, Michelle; Ford, Ruth M.

    2013-01-01

    Given the ubiquitous and salient nature of environmental print, it has the potential to scaffold emergent literacy in young children. This randomised control study evaluated the effects of using environmental print compared to standard print (the same labels in manuscript form) in an 8-week intervention (30 min per week) to foster 3- to…

  5. Emerging Disinfection By-Products and Other Emerging Environmental Contaminants: What’s New

    EPA Science Inventory

    This presentation will cover new research and concerns regarding drinking water disinfection by-products (DBPs) and other emerging environmental contaminants, such as perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), pharmaceuticals, perchlorate, benzotriazoles, fuel additives (e.g., ethylene dibro...

  6. Zoonosis emergence linked to agricultural intensification and environmental change

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Bryony A.; Grace, Delia; Kock, Richard; Alonso, Silvia; Rushton, Jonathan; Said, Mohammed Y.; McKeever, Declan; Mutua, Florence; Young, Jarrah; McDermott, John; Pfeiffer, Dirk Udo

    2013-01-01

    A systematic review was conducted by a multidisciplinary team to analyze qualitatively best available scientific evidence on the effect of agricultural intensification and environmental changes on the risk of zoonoses for which there are epidemiological interactions between wildlife and livestock. The study found several examples in which agricultural intensification and/or environmental change were associated with an increased risk of zoonotic disease emergence, driven by the impact of an expanding human population and changing human behavior on the environment. We conclude that the rate of future zoonotic disease emergence or reemergence will be closely linked to the evolution of the agriculture–environment nexus. However, available research inadequately addresses the complexity and interrelatedness of environmental, biological, economic, and social dimensions of zoonotic pathogen emergence, which significantly limits our ability to predict, prevent, and respond to zoonotic disease emergence. PMID:23671097

  7. Environmental Education in Malta: Trends and Challenges.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pace, Paul

    1997-01-01

    Analyzes the main events that characterize the development of environmental education in Malta. Focuses on three major evolutionary stages of that development: (1) the awareness stage; (2) the fragmentary stage; and (3) the coordinated stage. Contains 42 references. (DDR)

  8. Emerging foodborne diseases: an evolving public health challenge.

    PubMed Central

    Tauxe, R. V.

    1997-01-01

    The epidemiology of foodborne disease is changing. New pathogens have emerged, and some have spread worldwide. Many, including Salmonella, Escherichia coli O157:H7, Campylobacter, and Yersinia enterocolitica, have reservoirs in healthy food animals, from which they spread to an increasing variety of foods. These pathogens cause millions of cases of sporadic illness and chronic complications, as well as large and challenging outbreaks over many states and nations. Improved surveillance that combines rapid subtyping methods, cluster identification, and collaborative epidemiologic investigation can identify and halt large, dispersed outbreaks. Outbreak investigations and case-control studies of sporadic cases can identify sources of infection and guide the development of specific prevention strategies. Better understanding of how pathogens persist in animal reservoirs is also critical to successful long-term prevention. In the past, the central challenge of foodborne disease lay in preventing the contamination of human food with sewage or animal manure. In the future, prevention of foodborne disease will increasingly depend on controlling contamination of feed and water consumed by the animals themselves. PMID:9366593

  9. Environmental measurements in an emergency: this is not a drill.

    PubMed

    Musolino, Stephen V; Clark, Harvey; McCullough, Thomas; Pemberton, Wendy

    2012-05-01

    Emergency responders from the Department of Energy are trained regularly to assess the environmental consequences of a radiological or nuclear incident. While drills and exercises are highly effective tools in rehearsing for an emergency, the accidents at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plants presented real-world complexities that are difficult or impossible to simulate in such training. Customarily, the modeled hypothetical event used to create a drill or exercise data set is simple, well defined, and closely resembles conventional assumptions about the type of that event. Consequently, the modeling performed by players from the outset closely resembles the planner's hypothetical event. This approach also entails idealized, uniform data in the simulated plume and ground deposition scenarios created for the drill that match the modeling closely. The real-world event that occurred in Japan sharply deviated from the simple picture ordinarily created for drills and exercises that typically involve a release of radioactivity that is of short duration, a single puff with constant meteorology, or simple deviation such as a wind shift to bifurcate the plume. In the very early stages, accurate plume and deposition model predictions were difficult to produce due to the lack of field monitoring data and other information. In contrast to drills and exercises where plant monitoring data is available, there was much less plant monitoring data, essentially no reactor state information, and the meteorological conditions and releases were much more complex. Inevitably, the measurements in Japan were not homogeneous, thus presenting technical challenges to assessors tasked with ensuring the quality of the finished assessments and data products for government officials, the responder community, and the public. In this paper, examples of some operational real-world complexities are considered. Procedures, measurements, or radiological assessments from the Fukushima response are

  10. Evaluating Payments for Environmental Services: Methodological Challenges

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Over the last fifteen years, Payments for Environmental Services (PES) schemes have become very popular environmental policy instruments, but the academic literature has begun to question their additionality. The literature attempts to estimate the causal effect of these programs by applying impact evaluation (IE) techniques. However, PES programs are complex instruments and IE methods cannot be directly applied without adjustments. Based on a systematic review of the literature, this article proposes a framework for the methodological process of designing an IE for PES schemes. It revises and discusses the methodological choices at each step of the process and proposes guidelines for practitioners. PMID:26910850

  11. ADDRESSING ENVIRONMENTAL ENGINEERING CHALLENGES WITH COMPUTATIONAL FLUID DYNAMICS

    EPA Science Inventory

    This paper discusses the status and application of Computational Fluid Dynamics )CFD) models to address environmental engineering challenges for more detailed understanding of air pollutant source emissions, atmospheric dispersion and resulting human exposure. CFD simulations ...

  12. Environmental Science, Challenge for the Seventies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carter, H. E.

    The present status of environmental science--the study of all the systems of air, land, water, energy, and life that surround man--is examined historically and in terms of needed solutions to problems caused by the interactions of man with components of his environment. It is concluded that, at present, science can not provide the tools to fully…

  13. River of Life. Water: The Environmental Challenge.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Preudhomme, Leroy L.

    This is the sixth in a series of Conservation Yearbooks prepared by the U.S. Department of the Interior as environmental reports to the public concerning problems of water resources in the United States. Information presented includes descriptive information, statistical data, and extensive color photographs. The methods of presenting information…

  14. Integrating palliative care in oncologic emergency departments: Challenges and opportunities

    PubMed Central

    Elsayem, Ahmed F; Elzubeir, Hiba E; Brock, Patricia A; Todd, Knox H

    2016-01-01

    Although visiting the emergency departments (EDs) is considered poor quality of cancer care, there are indications these visits are increasing. Similarly, there is growing interest in providing palliative care (PC) to cancer patients in EDs. However, this integration is not without major challenges. In this article, we review the literature on why cancer patients visit EDs, the rates of hospitalization and mortality for these patients, and the models for integrating PC in EDs. We discuss opportunities such integration will bring to the quality of cancer care, and resource utilization of resources. We also discuss barriers faced by this integration. We found that the most common reasons for ED visits by cancer patients are pain, fever, shortness of breath, and gastrointestinal symptoms. The majority of the patients are admitted to hospitals, about 13% of the admitted patients die during hospitalization, and some patients die in ED. Patients who receive PC at an ED have shorter hospitalization and lower resource utilization. Models based solely on increasing PC provision in EDs by PC specialists have had modest success, while very limited ED-based PC provision has had slightly higher impact. However, details of these programs are lacking, and coordination between ED based PC and hospital-wide PC is not clear. In some studies, the objectives were to improve care in the communities and reduce ED visits and hospitalizations. We conclude that as more patients receive cancer therapy late in their disease trajectory, more cancer patients will visit EDs. Integration of PC with emergency medicine will require active participation of ED physicians in providing PC to cancer patients. PC specialist should play an active role in educating ED physicians about PC, and provide timely consultations. The impact of integrating PC in EDs on quality and cost of cancer care should be studied. PMID:27081645

  15. Integrating palliative care in oncologic emergency departments: Challenges and opportunities.

    PubMed

    Elsayem, Ahmed F; Elzubeir, Hiba E; Brock, Patricia A; Todd, Knox H

    2016-04-10

    Although visiting the emergency departments (EDs) is considered poor quality of cancer care, there are indications these visits are increasing. Similarly, there is growing interest in providing palliative care (PC) to cancer patients in EDs. However, this integration is not without major challenges. In this article, we review the literature on why cancer patients visit EDs, the rates of hospitalization and mortality for these patients, and the models for integrating PC in EDs. We discuss opportunities such integration will bring to the quality of cancer care, and resource utilization of resources. We also discuss barriers faced by this integration. We found that the most common reasons for ED visits by cancer patients are pain, fever, shortness of breath, and gastrointestinal symptoms. The majority of the patients are admitted to hospitals, about 13% of the admitted patients die during hospitalization, and some patients die in ED. Patients who receive PC at an ED have shorter hospitalization and lower resource utilization. Models based solely on increasing PC provision in EDs by PC specialists have had modest success, while very limited ED-based PC provision has had slightly higher impact. However, details of these programs are lacking, and coordination between ED based PC and hospital-wide PC is not clear. In some studies, the objectives were to improve care in the communities and reduce ED visits and hospitalizations. We conclude that as more patients receive cancer therapy late in their disease trajectory, more cancer patients will visit EDs. Integration of PC with emergency medicine will require active participation of ED physicians in providing PC to cancer patients. PC specialist should play an active role in educating ED physicians about PC, and provide timely consultations. The impact of integrating PC in EDs on quality and cost of cancer care should be studied. PMID:27081645

  16. Emergency department ultrasound probe infection control: challenges and solutions

    PubMed Central

    Shokoohi, Hamid; Armstrong, Paige; Tansek, Ryan

    2015-01-01

    Point-of-care ultrasound (US) has become a cornerstone in the diagnosis and treatment of patients in the emergency department (ED). Despite the beneficial impact on patient care, concern exists over repeat use of probes and the role as a vector for pathogen transmission. US probes are used for various applications, with the level of infection risk, based on the Spaulding Classification, ranging from noncritical with common practice to semicritical with endocavitary probes. To date, the most closely studied organisms are Staphylococcus aureus and human papilloma virus. Current evidence does confirm probe colonization but has not established a causative role in human infection. Based on current literature, US use during invasive procedures remains an infection control concern, but routine use on intact skin does not appear to cause significant risk to patients. Various barrier methods are available, each with indications based on extent of procedure and likelihood of contact with mucosal surfaces. Additionally, chemical cleansing methods have been shown to be effective in limiting probe contamination after use. New technologies utilizing ultraviolet light are available and effective but not widely used in the ED setting. As our understanding of the critical factors in US probe cleaning and disinfection improves, it is important to assess the challenges found in our current practice and to identify potential solutions to improve practices and procedures in infection control across the spectrum of US probe use in various applications in the ED. This article serves as a summary of the current literature available on infection control topics with the utilization of point-of-care US, and discusses challenges and potential solutions to improve the current practice of probe-related infection control. PMID:27147883

  17. Cryptosporidiosis: Environmental, therapeutic, and preventive challenges

    PubMed Central

    Collinet-Adler, Stefan; Ward, Honorine D.

    2014-01-01

    Cryptosporidium spp. are responsible for endemic and epidemic disease worldwide. Clinical manifestations may include acute, persistent, or chronic diarrhea, biliary, and pulmonary disease. Disease severity ranges from asymptomatic or mild to severe, intractable diarrhea with wasting depending on immune status, nutrition, and age. Transmission is fecal-oral with both human and animal reservoirs. Disease is often self limited in healthy individuals, but therapy remains a challenge in the immune-compromised. Prevention currently depends on appropriate hygiene and proper water management and treatment. PMID:20521158

  18. Green dialysis: the environmental challenges ahead.

    PubMed

    Agar, John W M

    2015-01-01

    The US Environmental Protection Agency Resource Conservation website begins: "Natural resource and energy conservation is achieved by managing materials more efficiently--reduce, reuse, recycle," yet healthcare agencies have been slow to heed and practice this simple message. In dialysis practice, notable for a recurrent, per capita resource consumption and waste generation profile second to none in healthcare, efforts to: (1) minimize water use and wastage; (2) consider strategies to reduce power consumption and/or use alternative power options; (3) develop optimal waste management and reusable material recycling programs; (4) design smart buildings that work with and for their environment; (5) establish research programs that explore environmental practice; all have been largely ignored by mainstream nephrology. Some countries are doing far better than others. In the United Kingdom and some European jurisdictions, exceptional recent progress has been made to develop, adopt, and coordinate eco-practice within dialysis programs. These programs set an example for others to follow. Elsewhere, progress has been piecemeal, at best. This review explores the current extent of "green" or eco-dialysis practices. While noting where progress has been made, it also suggests potential new research avenues to develop and follow. One thing seems certain: as global efforts to combat climate change and carbon generation accelerate, the environmental impact of dialysis practice will come under increasing regulatory focus. It is far preferable for the sector to take proactive steps, rather than to await the heavy hand of government or administration to force reluctant and costly compliance on the un-prepared. PMID:25440109

  19. THE FUKUSHIMA RADIOLOGICAL EMERGENCY AND CHALLENGES IDENTIFIED FOR FUTURE PUBLIC HEALTH RESPONSES

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Charles W.

    2015-01-01

    On 11 March 2011, northern Japan was rocked by first a magnitude 9.0 earthquake off the eastern coast and then an ensuing tsunami. The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant complex was hit by these twin disasters, and a cascade of events was initiated that led to radionuclide releases causing widespread radioactive contamination of residential areas, agricultural land, and coastal waters. Radioactive material from Japan was subsequently transmitted to locations around the globe, including the U.S. The levels of radioactive material that arrived in the U.S. were never large enough to be a concern for health effects, but the presence of this material in the environment was enough to create a public health emergency in the U.S. The radiation safety and public health communities in the U.S. are identifying challenges they faced in responding to this incident. This paper discusses three of those challenges: (1) The growing shortage of trained radiation subject matter experts in the field of environmental transport and dosimetry of radionuclides; (2) the need to begin expressing all radiation-related quantities in terms of the International System of Units; and (3) the need to define when a radiation dose is or is not one of “public health concern.” This list represents only a small subset of the list of challenges being identified by public health agencies that responded to the Fukushima incident. However, these three challenges are fundamental to any radiological emergency response. Addressing them will have a significant positive impact on how the U.S. responds to the next radiological emergency. PMID:22469934

  20. Disaster Response and Preparedness Application: Emergency Environmental Response Tool (EERT)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smoot, James; Carr, Hugh; Jester, Keith

    2003-01-01

    In 2000, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Environmental Office at the John C. Stennis Space Center (SSC) developed an Environmental Geographic Information Systems (EGIS) database. NASA had previously developed a GIS database at SSC to assist in the NASA Environmental Office's management of the Center. This GIS became the basis for the NASA-wide EGIS project, which was proposed after the applicability of the SSC database was demonstrated. Since its completion, the SSC EGIS has aided the Environmental Office with noise pollution modeling, land cover assessment, wetlands delineation, environmental hazards mapping, and critical habitat delineation for protected species. At SSC, facility management and safety officers are responsible for ensuring the physical security of the facilities, staff, and equipment as well as for responding to environmental emergencies, such as accidental releases of hazardous materials. All phases of emergency management (planning, mitigation, preparedness, and response) depend on data reliability and system interoperability from a variety of sources to determine the size and scope of the emergency operation. Because geospatial data are now available for all NASA facilities, it was suggested that this data could be incorporated into a computerized management information program to assist facility managers. The idea was that the information system could improve both the effectiveness and the efficiency of managing and controlling actions associated with disaster, homeland security, and other activities. It was decided to use SSC as a pilot site to demonstrate the efficacy of having a baseline, computerized management information system that ultimately was referred to as the Emergency Environmental Response Tool (EERT).

  1. EDITORIAL: The need and challenge for Environmental Research Letters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kammen, Daniel M.

    2006-11-01

    Why another journal? This is the inevitable question that every effort to launch a new journal must, and should, address. A common statistic in the business world is that nine out of ten new restaurants fail. In the academic world something similar, but less definitive, can happen: a potentially interesting, but practically flawed, effort can be launched, never truly build an intellectual community, but then continue as a sub-critical, little-known journal for far too long. The challenge any new publication, academic or professional, faces is thus extreme. A new journal must find a way to usefully compete, and bring new value, in the face of multiple existing outlets for significant results, tremendous barriers to establishing a 'track record' or 'name recognition' against existing publications, and a print and a cyberspace increasingly desperate in the search for 'content', scientific or otherwise. In the case of Environmental Research Letters (ERL), however, these questions answered themselves and, as a result, I cannot imagine a more critically needed new publication. Indeed, the goal of ERL is to be more than simply one more good new journal. It is to be a place—both physical and online—that those engaged in environmental issues—from researchers within the physical and natural sciences, to those concerned with applied systems studies, modeling and simulation techniques, practical engagement in environmental activism, and developing, conducting or critiquing policy, legal, or business efforts—will all want to go to read, and to engage with colleagues. The environmental field has witnessed an incredible intellectual and professional proliferation. The areas of ecological resilience, global change science, policy, law and economics, industrial ecology, green buildings, environmental genomics, environmental archaeology, and the sociology of environmental movements have become increasingly regarded and, to varying degrees, recognized themselves as major

  2. [Emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases--a challenge for public health].

    PubMed

    Do, P H; Caumes, E; Bricaire, F

    2000-01-20

    We have recently seen a worldwide explosion of infectious diseases: emerging diseases like the HIV/AIDS pandemic, or old diseases like cholera, tuberculosis, diphteria, plague, yellow fever, dengue, or malaria. These reemerging diseases are on the surge because of multiple factors: environmental changes, transformation of ecosystems, ongoing socioeconomic degradation and deterioration of public health systems in many countries. The increasing bacterial resistance to antibiotics or virologic resistance to antiviral drugs are becoming a serious problem today. This global danger needs a global response. There must be a cooperation between the different actors in the field of public health. The general practitioner should look for good therapeutic compliance, control vaccinations, and give his patients health education, including prevention of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases. PMID:10686805

  3. Environmentally Responsible Aviation - Real Solutions for Environmental Challenges Facing Aviation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Collier, Fayette; Thomas, Russell; Burley, Casey; Nickol, Craig; Lee, Chi-Ming; Tong, Michael

    2010-01-01

    The combined reality of persistently strong growth in air traffic and the vital economic role of the air transport system result in continued demand for the progress of technology for the reduction of aircraft noise, emissions of oxides of nitrogen, and fuel burn. NASA s Environmentally Responsible Aviation (ERA) project has set aggressive goals in these three areas including a noise goal of 42 dB cumulative below the Stage 4 certification level. The goal for the reduction of oxides of nitrogen is 75% below the current standard. The fuel burn reduction goal is 50% below that of a current state-of-the-art aircraft. Furthermore, the overall goal of ERA is to mature technologies that will meet these goals simultaneously and with a timeframe of 2020 for technical readiness. This paper outlines the key technologies and the progress achieved to date toward the goals.

  4. Challenges for Data Archival Centers in Evolving Environmental Sciences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Y.; Cook, R. B.; Gu, L.; Santhana Vannan, S. K.; Beaty, T.

    2015-12-01

    Environmental science has entered into a big data era as enormous data about the Earth environment are continuously collected through field and airborne missions, remote sensing observations, model simulations, sensor networks, etc. An open-access and open-management data infrastructure for data-intensive science is a major grand challenge in global environmental research (BERAC, 2010). Such an infrastructure, as exemplified in EOSDIS, GEOSS, and NSF EarthCube, will provide a complete lifecycle of environmental data and ensures that data will smoothly flow among different phases of collection, preservation, integration, and analysis. Data archival centers, as the data integration units closest to data providers, serve as the source power to compile and integrate heterogeneous environmental data into this global infrastructure. This presentation discusses the interoperability challenges and practices of geosciences from the aspect of data archival centers, based on the operational experiences of the NASA-sponsored Oak Ridge National Laboratory Distributed Active Archive Center (ORNL DAAC) and related environmental data management activities. Specifically, we will discuss the challenges to 1) encourage and help scientists to more actively share data with the broader scientific community, so that valuable environmental data, especially those dark data collected by individual scientists in small independent projects, can be shared and integrated into the infrastructure to tackle big science questions; 2) curate heterogeneous multi-disciplinary data, focusing on the key aspects of identification, format, metadata, data quality, and semantics to make them ready to be plugged into a global data infrastructure. We will highlight data curation practices at the ORNL DAAC for global campaigns such as BOREAS, LBA, SAFARI 2000; and 3) enhance the capabilities to more effectively and efficiently expose and deliver "big" environmental data to broad range of users and systems

  5. Modularity and emergence: biology's challenge in understanding life.

    PubMed

    Lüttge, U

    2012-11-01

    This essay juxtaposes modularity and emergence in the consideration of biological systems at various scalar levels of spatio-temporal organisation. It is noted that reductionism, specialisation and modularity are basic prerequisites for understanding life. It is realised that increased progress of scientific biology in elucidating mechanisms at the level of modular components supports the accusation that the more it advances in materialistic description of details, the more it diverts from understanding the innate properties of life. It is clear that modularity, by taking the whole as the sum of its parts, is insufficient for understanding living systems. At the same time, however, there is emergence, as advocated by Robert Laughlin. Emergence after the integration of modules leads to completely new properties of individual organisms as unique unitary entities, and also of systems of organisms with synergistic and antagonistic interactions of the integrated species. The discussion is predominantly based on examples from plant biology. At hierarchically higher scalar levels emergent biological systems are networks integrating species, biotopes, ecosystems and the entire biosphere of Earth, also named Gaia by James Lovelock, in a natural scientific respect. While investigating modules remains essential, biology as a nature science needs to merge and integrate such information to be able to unfold emergence. Through efforts towards visualising and understanding emergent diversity and complexity, the research discipline of biology will provide invaluable contributions to understanding life, and thus refute the accusation that it diverts from embracing the innate properties of life. PMID:23016697

  6. SCALING AN URBAN EMERGENCY EVACUATION FRAMEWORK: CHALLENGES AND PRACTICES

    SciTech Connect

    Karthik, Rajasekar; Lu, Wei

    2014-01-01

    Critical infrastructure disruption, caused by severe weather events, natural disasters, terrorist attacks, etc., has significant impacts on urban transportation systems. We built a computational framework to simulate urban transportation systems under critical infrastructure disruption in order to aid real-time emergency evacuation. This framework will use large scale datasets to provide a scalable tool for emergency planning and management. Our framework, World-Wide Emergency Evacuation (WWEE), integrates population distribution and urban infrastructure networks to model travel demand in emergency situations at global level. Also, a computational model of agent-based traffic simulation is used to provide an optimal evacuation plan for traffic operation purpose [1]. In addition, our framework provides a web-based high resolution visualization tool for emergency evacuation modelers and practitioners. We have successfully tested our framework with scenarios in both United States (Alexandria, VA) and Europe (Berlin, Germany) [2]. However, there are still some major drawbacks for scaling this framework to handle big data workloads in real time. On our back-end, lack of proper infrastructure limits us in ability to process large amounts of data, run the simulation efficiently and quickly, and provide fast retrieval and serving of data. On the front-end, the visualization performance of microscopic evacuation results is still not efficient enough due to high volume data communication between server and client. We are addressing these drawbacks by using cloud computing and next-generation web technologies, namely Node.js, NoSQL, WebGL, Open Layers 3 and HTML5 technologies. We will describe briefly about each one and how we are using and leveraging these technologies to provide an efficient tool for emergency management organizations. Our early experimentation demonstrates that using above technologies is a promising approach to build a scalable and high performance urban

  7. VHH antibodies: emerging reagents for the analysis of environmental chemicals.

    PubMed

    Bever, Candace S; Dong, Jie-Xian; Vasylieva, Natalia; Barnych, Bogdan; Cui, Yongliang; Xu, Zhen-Lin; Hammock, Bruce D; Gee, Shirley J

    2016-09-01

    A VHH antibody (or nanobody) is the antigen binding fragment of heavy chain only antibodies. Discovered nearly 25 years ago, they have been investigated for their use in clinical therapeutics and immunodiagnostics, and more recently for environmental monitoring applications. A new and valuable immunoreagent for the analysis of small molecular weight environmental chemicals, VHH will overcome many pitfalls encountered with conventional reagents. In the work so far, VHH antibodies often perform comparably to conventional antibodies for small molecule analysis, are amenable to numerous genetic engineering techniques, and show ease of adaption to other immunodiagnostic platforms for use in environmental monitoring. Recent reviews cover the structure and production of VHH antibodies as well as their use in clinical settings. However, no report focuses on the use of these VHH antibodies to detect small environmental chemicals (MW < 1500 Da). This review article summarizes the efforts made to produce VHHs to various environmental targets, compares the VHH-based assays with conventional antibody assays, and discusses the advantages and limitations in developing these new antibody reagents particularly to small molecule targets. Graphical Abstract Overview of the production of VHHs to small environmental chemicals and highlights of the utility of these new emerging reagents. PMID:27209591

  8. Continuous and emerging challenges of Potato virus Y in potato

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Potato virus Y (PVY) is one of the oldest known plant viruses, and yet in the past 20 years it emerged in the U.S. as a relatively new and very serious problem in potato. The virus exists as a complex of strains that induce a wide variety of foliar and tuber symptoms leading to yield reduction and l...

  9. Asperger Syndrome: The Emerging Challenge to Special Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Safran, Stephen P.

    2001-01-01

    This article provides a synthesis of recent literature on Asperger syndrome, a condition that has received little attention in American special education. The analysis addresses the syndrome's history, definition, differential diagnosis from other pervasive developmental disorders, screening procedures, and emerging educational interventions.…

  10. An Emerging Field of Research: Challenges in Pediatric Decision Making

    PubMed Central

    Lipstein, Ellen A.; Brinkman, William B.; Fiks, Alexander G.; Hendrix, Kristin S.; Kryworuchko, Jennifer; Miller, Victoria A.; Prosser, Lisa A.; Ungar, Wendy J.; Fox, David

    2014-01-01

    There is growing interest in pediatric decision science, spurred by policies advocating for children’s involvement in medical decision making. Challenges specific to pediatric decision research include: the dynamic nature of child participation in decisions due to the growth and development of children, the family context of all pediatric decisions, and the measurement of preferences and outcomes that may inform decision making in the pediatric setting. The objectives of this manuscript are to describe each of these challenges, to provide decision researchers with insight into pediatric decision making, and establish a blueprint for future research that will contribute to high quality pediatric medical decision making. Much work has been done toward addressing gaps in pediatric decision science, but substantial work remains. Understanding and addressing the challenges that exist in pediatric decision making may foster medical decision-making science across the age spectrum. PMID:25145576

  11. Critical Performative Pedagogy: Emergent Bilingual Learners Challenge Local Immigration Issues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harman, Ruth; Varga-Dobai, Kinga

    2012-01-01

    Recent anti-immigration policies and practices in the Southeast of the United States have presented difficult challenges for newly arrived bilingual learners and their families. To validate student voices within this socio-political context, our school/university collaboration implemented an arts-based participatory approach to English Language…

  12. Overcrowding in the emergency departments: Challenges and opportunities for improvement.

    PubMed

    Baig, Muhammad Akbar; Mian, Asad; Najeed, Fatima; Shahzad, Hira

    2015-12-01

    With the advent of Emergency Medicine, one can observe an increase in the number of Emergency Departments (ED) across the country. However, most EDs struggle due to an overwhelming number of patients. Overcrowding can lead to delays in patient care. For a city like Karachi which is an active disaster zone, preemptive preparedness is required in the face of terror threats and such overcrowding needs to be decreased to a bare minimum. The most frequent causes of prolonged length of stay (LOS) in the ED include non-availability of in-hospital beds, delays in response to subspecialty consultations and escalating medical expenses. All of these can negatively impact patient care by putting patient safety at risk and patient care in jeopardy. There is an increased risk of unintentional medical errors and a concomitant increase in unwanted lawsuits. A few simple interventions which may help alleviate this situation to some extent have been discussed. PMID:26627520

  13. Metaphotonics: An emerging field with opportunities and challenges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baev, Alexander; Prasad, Paras N.; Ågren, Hans; Samoć, Marek; Wegener, Martin

    2015-09-01

    Metaphotonics is an emerging multidisciplinary field that deals with manipulation of electro-magnetic fields in nanoengineered (meta)materials using both electric and magnetic interactions and their cross-coupling. It offers unprecedented control of both linear and nonlinear optical functions for applications ranging from optical switching, to negative- and near-zero refractive index metamaterials, to chiral bioimaging, to cloaking. However, realization of such applications requires physics-guided nanoengineering of appropriate artificial media with electro-magnetic properties at visible and infrared wavelengths that are tailored to surpass those of any naturally-occurring material. Here, we review metaphotonics with a broadened vision and scope, introduce potential applications, describe the role of theoretical physics through multiscale modeling, review the materials development and current status, and outline opportunities in this fertile emerging field.

  14. Toxicity and Environmental Risks of Nanomaterials: Challenges and Future Needs

    PubMed Central

    Ray, Paresh Chandra; Yu, Hongtao; Fu, Peter P.

    2010-01-01

    Nanotechnology has gained a great deal of public interest due to the needs and applications of nanomaterials in many areas of human endeavors including industry, agriculture, business, medicine and public health. Environmental exposure to nanomaterials is inevitable as nanomaterials become part of our daily life, and as a result, nanotoxicity research is gaining attention. This review presents a summary of recent research efforts on fate, behavior and toxicity of different classes of nanomaterials in the environment. A critical evaluation of challenges and future needs for the safe environmental nanotechnology has been discussed. PMID:19204862

  15. Challenges in quality of environmental measurements for compliance

    SciTech Connect

    White, M.G.

    1994-04-07

    Quality systems development in environmental measurements for compliance with regulatory requirements for nuclear and other contaminants in the environment is one of the major challenges in current technology disciplines. Efforts to fulfill the mission and objectives of funded projects will not be successful on a timely and cost-effective schedule without adequate plans and credible action for the protection of workers, facilities, and the public in environment, safety, and health aspects. This can be accomplished through quality assurance planning and implementation of an effective, controlled environmental measurements program.

  16. Environmental issues: the challenge for the chief executive.

    PubMed

    Hutchinson, C

    1992-06-01

    Businesses are under pressure to adopt environmental policies and incorporate them into their strategic business planning as a matter of routine. These pressures are coming from at least five sources--stricter legislation, consumer demand, competitive advantage, staff concerns and community pressure. The challenge is enormous but there is growing evidence that sound environmental management provides pay-off in bottom line results. Business organizations have a vital role to play and its good for them. There are opportunities for new business as well as threats to those organizations which continue to ignore the trends. PMID:10120317

  17. Emerging nuclear energy systems: Economic challenge: Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    Nuckolls, J.H.

    1986-01-01

    Future nuclear energy systems may achieve substantially lower energy costs than those of existing fossil energy systems and comparable capital costs. Such low cost nuclear energy would provide a strong economic incentive to minimize the use of fossil fuels. If these low cost nuclear energy systems emerge in the next few decades, 21st century civilization may be able to avert potentially disastrous CO/sub 2/ induced global climate changes. 12 refs., 1 fig.

  18. The rise of food allergy: Environmental factors and emerging treatments.

    PubMed

    Benedé, Sara; Blázquez, Ana Belen; Chiang, David; Tordesillas, Leticia; Berin, M Cecilia

    2016-05-01

    Food allergy has rapidly increased in prevalence, suggesting an important role for environmental factors in disease susceptibility. The immune response of food allergy is characterized by IgE production, and new findings from mouse and human studies indicate an important role of the cytokine IL-9, which is derived from both T cells and mast cells, in disease manifestations. Emerging evidence suggests that route of exposure to food, particularly peanut, is important. Exposure through the skin promotes sensitization while early exposure through the gastrointestinal tract promotes tolerance. Evidence from mouse studies indicate a role of the microbiome in development of food allergy, which is supported by correlative human studies showing a dysbiosis in food allergy. There is no approved treatment for food allergy, but emerging therapies are focused on allergen immunotherapy to provide desensitization, while pre-clinical studies are focused on using adjuvants or novel delivery approaches to improve efficacy and safety of immunotherapy. PMID:27322456

  19. Membrane materials for addressing energy and environmental challenges.

    PubMed

    Drioli, Enrico; Fontananova, Enrica

    2012-01-01

    Our modern society must solve various severe problems to maintain and increase our quality of life: from water stress to global warming, to fossil fuel depletion, to environmental pollution. The process intensification (PI) strategy is expected to contribute to overcoming many of these issues by facilitating the transition from a resource-intensive to a knowledge-intensive industrial system that will guarantee sustainable growth. Membrane operations, which respond efficiently to the requirements of the PI strategy, have the potential to replace conventional energy-intensive separation techniques, which will boost the efficiency and reduce the environmental impact of separations as well as conversion processes. This work critically reviews the current status and emerging applications of (integrated) membrane operations with a special focus on energy and environmental applications. PMID:22483262

  20. Interweaving Knowledge Resources to Address Complex Environmental Health Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Beth Ellen; Suk, William A.

    2015-01-01

    Background Complex problems do not respect academic disciplinary boundaries. Environmental health research is complex and often moves beyond these boundaries, integrating diverse knowledge resources to solve such challenges. Here we describe an evolving paradigm for interweaving approaches that integrates widely diverse resources outside of traditional academic environments in full partnerships of mutual respect and understanding. We demonstrate that scientists, social scientists, and engineers can work with government agencies, industry, and communities to interweave their expertise into metaphorical knowledge fabrics to share understanding, resources, and enthusiasm. Objective Our goal is to acknowledge and validate how interweaving research approaches can contribute to research-driven, solution-oriented problem solving in environmental health, and to inspire more members of the environmental health community to consider this approach. Discussion The National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Superfund Research Program (SRP), as mandated by Congress, has evolved to become a program that reaches across a wide range of knowledge resources. SRP fosters interweaving multiple knowledge resources to develop innovative multidirectional partnerships for research and training. Here we describe examples of how motivation, ideas, knowledge, and expertise from different people, institutions, and agencies can integrate to tackle challenges that can be as complex as the resources they bring to bear on it. Conclusions By providing structure for interweaving science with its stakeholders, we are better able to leverage resources, increase potential for innovation, and proactively ensure a more fully developed spectrum of beneficial outcomes of research investments. Citation Anderson BE, Naujokas MF, Suk WA. 2015. Interweaving knowledge resources to address complex environmental health challenges. Environ Health Perspect 123:1095–1099

  1. Nanoparticle characterization: State of the art, challenges, and emerging technologies

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Eun Jung; Holback, Hillary; Liu, Karen C.; Abouelmagd, Sara A.; Park, Joonyoung; Yeo, Yoon

    2013-01-01

    Nanoparticles have received enormous attention as a promising tool to enhance target-specific drug delivery and diagnosis. Various in vitro and in vivo techniques are used to characterize a new system and predict its clinical efficacy. These techniques enable efficient comparison across nanoparticles and facilitate a product optimization process. On the other hand, we recognize their limitations as a prediction tool, which owe to inadequate applications and overly simplified test conditions. This article provides a critical review of in vitro and in vivo techniques currently used for evaluation of nanoparticles and introduces emerging techniques and models that may be used complementarily. PMID:23461379

  2. Continuous and emerging challenges of Potato virus Y in potato.

    PubMed

    Karasev, Alexander V; Gray, Stewart M

    2013-01-01

    Potato virus Y (PVY) is one of the oldest known plant viruses, and yet in the past 20 years it emerged in the United States as a relatively new and very serious problem in potato. The virus exists as a complex of strains that induce a wide variety of foliar and tuber symptoms in potato, leading to yield reduction and loss of tuber quality. PVY has displayed a distinct ability to evolve through accumulation of mutations and more rapidly through recombination between different strains, adapting to new potato cultivars across different environments. Factors behind PVY emergence as a serious potato threat are not clear at the moment, and here an attempt is made to analyze various properties of the virus and its interactions with potato resistance genes and with aphid vectors to explain this recent PVY spread in potato production areas. Recent advances in PVY resistance identification and mapping of corresponding genes are described. An updated classification is proposed for PVY strains that takes into account the most current information on virus molecular genetics, serology, and host reactivity. PMID:23915135

  3. Tumor lysis syndrome in the emergency department: challenges and solutions

    PubMed Central

    Ñamendys-Silva, Silvio A; Arredondo-Armenta, Juan M; Plata-Menchaca, Erika P; Guevara-García, Humberto; García-Guillén, Francisco J; Rivero-Sigarroa, Eduardo; Herrera-Gómez, Angel

    2015-01-01

    Tumor lysis syndrome (TLS) is the most common oncologic emergency. It is caused by rapid tumor cell destruction and the resulting nucleic acid degradation during or days after initiation of cytotoxic therapy. Also, a spontaneous form exists. The metabolic abnormalities associated with this syndrome include hyperkalemia, hyperphosphatemia, hypocalcemia, hyperuricemia, and acute kidney injury. These abnormalities can lead to life-threatening complications, such as heart rhythm abnormalities and neurologic manifestations. The emergency management of overt TLS involves proper fluid resuscitation with crystalloids in order to improve the intravascular volume and the urinary output and to increase the renal excretion of potassium, phosphorus, and uric acid. With this therapeutic strategy, prevention of calcium phosphate and uric acid crystal deposition within renal tubules is achieved. Other measures in the management of overt TLS are prescription of hypouricemic agents, renal replacement therapy, and correction of electrolyte imbalances. Hyperkalemia should be treated quickly and aggressively as its presence is the most hazardous acute complication that can cause sudden death from cardiac arrhythmias. Treatment of hypocalcemia is reserved for patients with electrocardiographic changes or symptoms of neuromuscular irritability. In patients who are refractory to medical management of electrolyte abnormalities or with severe cardiac and neurologic manifestations, early dialysis is recommended. PMID:27147889

  4. Expanding the role for psychology in addressing environmental challenges.

    PubMed

    Clayton, Susan; Devine-Wright, Patrick; Swim, Janet; Bonnes, Mirilia; Steg, Linda; Whitmarsh, Lorraine; Carrico, Amanda

    2016-04-01

    Environmental challenges, though daunting, present an important area for psychologists to apply their knowledge. Psychological theories, research methods, and interventions are essential for examining the questions about human impacts, tendencies, and capacities that are integral to constructing effective responses to these challenges. Although a great deal of relevant research has been done, there is scope for psychologists to be more extensively involved. Following a brief review of existing research, we outline some important new directions. We also highlight 2 key divergences, arguing that psychological research needs to expand beyond a traditional, theory-based and decontextualized approach to environmental issues to incorporate a contextualized or "place-based" approach and a willingness to collaborate in interdisciplinary research teams that focus on specific environmental problems. Suggestions for promoting such interdisciplinary collaborations are reviewed. We encourage psychologists to expand their engagement with important environmental issues through multiple research approaches in order to further their understanding of human behavior, contributions to human well-being, and relevance to other disciplines and to society. PMID:26147395

  5. Fluoroquinolone antibiotics: an emerging class of environmental micropollutants.

    PubMed

    Van Doorslaer, Xander; Dewulf, Jo; Van Langenhove, Herman; Demeestere, Kristof

    2014-12-01

    The aim of this review paper is to provide a comprehensive overview of different chemical and environmental aspects concerning fluoroquinolone antibiotics as emerging contaminants. A literature survey has been performed based on 204 papers from 1998 to mid-2013, resulting in a dataset consisting out of 4100 data points related to physical-chemical properties, environmental occurrence, removal efficiencies, and ecotoxicological data. In a first part, an overview is given on relevant physical-chemical parameters to better understand the behavior of fluoroquinolones during wastewater treatment and in the environment. Secondly, the route of these antibiotics after their application in both human and veterinary surroundings is discussed. Thirdly, the occurrence of fluoroquinolone residues is discussed for different environmental matrices. The final part of this review provides a tentative risk assessment of fluoroquinolone compounds and their transformation products in surface waters by means of hazard quotients. Overall, this review shows that fluoroquinolone antibiotics have a wide spread use and that their behavior during wastewater treatment is complex with an incomplete removal. As a result, it is observed that these biorecalcitrant compounds are present in different environmental matrices at potentially hazardous concentrations for the aquatic environment. The latter calls for actions on both the consumption as well as the wastewater treatment aspect to diminish the discharge of these biological active compounds. PMID:25226071

  6. Integrated Safety, Environmental and Emergency Management System (ISEEMS)

    SciTech Connect

    Silver, R.; Langwell, G.; Thomas, C.; Coffing, S.

    1996-05-01

    The Risk Management and NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) Department of Sandia National Laboratories/New Mexico (SNL/NM) recognized the need for hazard and environmental data analysis and management to support the line managers` need to know, understand, manage and document the hazards in their facilities and activities. The Integrated Safety, Environmental, and Emergency Management System (ISEEMS) was developed in response to this need. SNL needed a process that would quickly and easily determine if a facility or project activity contained only standard industrial hazards and therefore require minimal safety documentation, or if non-standard industrial hazards existed which would require more extensive analysis and documentation. Many facilities and project activities at SNL would benefit from the quick screening process used in ISEEMS. In addition, a process was needed that would expedite the NEPA process. ISEEMS takes advantage of the fact that there is some information needed for the NEPA process that is also needed for the safety documentation process. The ISEEMS process enables SNL line organizations to identify and manage hazards and environmental concerns at a level of effort commensurate with the hazards themselves by adopting a necessary and sufficient (graded) approach to compliance. All hazard-related information contained within ISEEMS is location based and can be displayed using on-line maps and building floor plans. This visual representation provides for quick assimilation and analysis.

  7. Emergence of 3D Printed Dosage Forms: Opportunities and Challenges.

    PubMed

    Alhnan, Mohamed A; Okwuosa, Tochukwu C; Sadia, Muzna; Wan, Ka-Wai; Ahmed, Waqar; Arafat, Basel

    2016-08-01

    The recent introduction of the first FDA approved 3D-printed drug has fuelled interest in 3D printing technology, which is set to revolutionize healthcare. Since its initial use, this rapid prototyping (RP) technology has evolved to such an extent that it is currently being used in a wide range of applications including in tissue engineering, dentistry, construction, automotive and aerospace. However, in the pharmaceutical industry this technology is still in its infancy and its potential yet to be fully explored. This paper presents various 3D printing technologies such as stereolithographic, powder based, selective laser sintering, fused deposition modelling and semi-solid extrusion 3D printing. It also provides a comprehensive review of previous attempts at using 3D printing technologies on the manufacturing dosage forms with a particular focus on oral tablets. Their advantages particularly with adaptability in the pharmaceutical field have been highlighted, which enables the preparation of dosage forms with complex designs and geometries, multiple actives and tailored release profiles. An insight into the technical challenges facing the different 3D printing technologies such as the formulation and processing parameters is provided. Light is also shed on the different regulatory challenges that need to be overcome for 3D printing to fulfil its real potential in the pharmaceutical industry. PMID:27194002

  8. Mainstreaming of Emergency Contraception Pill in India: Challenges and Opportunities

    PubMed Central

    Dixit, Anvita; Khan, M. E.; Bhatnagar, Isha

    2015-01-01

    Background: Emergency Contraception Pill (ECP) is an essential intervention to prevent unwanted pregnancies. However, its use has remained low due to various barriers including reservations among medical fraternity. Materials and Methods: This paper presents findings on barriers to ECP's easy access for potential users from (i) a cross-sectional survey of providers' attitudes, beliefs, and practices and interviews with key opinion leaders, (ii) three consultations organized by Population Council with policymakers and public health experts, and (iii) evidence from scientific literature. Results: The major barriers to easy access of ECP include misconceptions and reservations of providers (disapproval of ECP provision by CHWs, opposition to its being an OTC product, and myths, misconceptions, and moral judgments about its users) including influential gynecologists. Conclusion: For mainstreaming ECP, the paper recommends educational campaign focusing on gynecologists and CHWs, relaxing restrictive policy on advertisement of ECP, involving press media and strengthening supply chain to ensure its regular supply to ASHA (CHW). PMID:25657513

  9. Medical surveillance for the emerging occupational and environmental respiratory diseases

    PubMed Central

    Weissman, David N.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose of review To highlight the important issues to consider in deciding whether to pursue and how to conduct medical surveillance for the emerging occupational and environmental respiratory diseases. It provides several recent examples illustrating implementation and usefulness of medical surveillance and the lessons learned from these experiences. Recent findings Medical surveillance conducted after sentinel outbreaks of constrictive bronchiolitis in microwave popcorn and flavoring production plants have shown the usefulness of this approach in documenting the burden of disease, identifying particular problem areas as targets for preventive interventions, and in tracking the progress. They have also identified the usefulness of longitudinal spirometry, which allows comparison of the individuals’ results to their own previous tests. The importance of recognizing a sentinel outbreak needing greater investigation is demonstrated by the cluster of cases of constrictive bronchiolitis recognized in military veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan. The World Trade Center disaster has demonstrated the importance of having baseline lung function data for future comparison and the importance of rapidly identifying exposed populations at greatest risk for health effects, and thus potentially having the greatest benefit from medical surveillance. Summary When used appropriately, medical surveillance is a useful tool in addressing the emerging occupational and environmental respiratory diseases by facilitating improvements in primary prevention and enabling interventions to help individuals through secondary prevention. PMID:24500294

  10. Emerging circulating biomarkers in glioblastoma: promises and challenges.

    PubMed

    Touat, Mehdi; Duran-Peña, Alberto; Alentorn, Agusti; Lacroix, Ludovic; Massard, Christophe; Idbaih, Ahmed

    2015-01-01

    Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most common and devastating primary malignant brain tumor in adults. The past few years have seen major progress in our understanding of the molecular basis of GBM. These advances, which have contributed to the development of novel targeted therapies, will change the paradigms in GBM therapy from disease-based to individually tailored molecular target-based treatment. No validated circulating biomarkers have yet been integrated into clinical practice for GBM. There is thus a critical need to implement minimally invasive clinical tests enabling molecular stratification and prognosis assessment, as well as the prediction and monitoring of treatment response. After examination of data from recent studies exploring several categories of tumor-associated biomarkers (circulating tumor cells, extracellular vesicles, nucleic acids and oncometabolites) identified in the blood, cerebrospinal fluid and urine, this article discusses the challenges and prospects for the development of circulating biomarkers in GBM. PMID:26394701

  11. Emerging nanomedicine applications and manufacturing: progress and challenges.

    PubMed

    Sartain, Felicity; Greco, Francesca; Hill, Kathryn; Rannard, Steve; Owen, Andrew

    2016-03-01

    APS 6th International PharmSci Conference 2015 7-9 September 2015 East Midlands Conference Centre, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK As part of the 6th APS International PharmSci Conference, a nanomedicine session was organised to address challenges and share experiences in this field. Topics ranged from the reporting on latest results and advances in the development of targeted therapeutics to the needs that the community faces in how to progress these exciting proof of concept results into products. Here we provide an overview of the discussion and highlight some of the initiatives that have recently been established to support the translation of nanomedicines into the clinic. PMID:26911307

  12. Technological challenges for boosting coal production with environmental sustainability.

    PubMed

    Ghose, Mrinal K

    2009-07-01

    The global energy requirement has grown at a phenomenon rate and the consumption of primary energy sources has been a very high positive growth. This paper focuses on the consumption of different primary energy sources and it identifies that coal will continue to remain as the prime energy source in foreseeable future. It examines the energy requirement perspective for India and demand of coal as the prime energy source. Economic development and poverty alleviation depend on securing affordable energy sources and Indian coal mining industry offers a bright future for the country's energy security, provided the industry is allowed to develop by supportive government policies and adopts latest technologies for mining. It is an irony that in-spite of having a plentiful reserves, India is not able to jack up coal production to meet its current and future demand. It discusses the strategies to be adopted for growth and meeting the coal demand. But such energy are very much concerned with environmental degradation and must be driven by contemporary managerial acumen addressing environmental and social challenges effectively The paper highlights the emissions of greenhouse gases due to burning of fossil fuels and environmental consequences of global warming and sea-level rise. Technological solutions for environment friendly coal mining and environmental laws for the abatement of environmental degradation are discussed in this paper. PMID:18604635

  13. Adaptation Challenges and Emerging Efforts in Adaptation Planning in California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moser, S. C.

    2008-12-01

    Following Governor Schwarzenegger's Executive Order (S-03-05) of 2005, numerous researchers have been engaged in an ongoing assessment effort to support the state's mitigation and adaptation efforts. Under the sponsorship and coordination of the California Energy Commission's Public Interest Energy Research (PIER) Program, a wide range of climate change impacts and adaptation studies are being conducted and summarized on a biannual basis to assess the latest climate change science, potential impacts on critical sectors, and the state's efforts to manage its climate change risks. In the past, adaptation needs assessments in the state have primarily used a hazards-based (i.e., climate scenario-driven, top-down) approach, while vulnerability-based, bottom-up studies are only now emerging. They are increasingly viewed as complementary and necessary to adequately inform adaptation strategies. This paper briefly highlights this assessment history and then focuses on the planning efforts currently underway to prepare California's first state-wide adaptation plan. As the science and policy/management evolve in tandem, this paper will suggest future policy- or use-inspired research areas, and offer recommendations on how to improve interaction between researchers and practitioners at the science-policy interface, in order to build the state's decision support capacity in the face of a rapidly changing climate.

  14. P300 brain computer interface: current challenges and emerging trends

    PubMed Central

    Fazel-Rezai, Reza; Allison, Brendan Z.; Guger, Christoph; Sellers, Eric W.; Kleih, Sonja C.; Kübler, Andrea

    2012-01-01

    A brain-computer interface (BCI) enables communication without movement based on brain signals measured with electroencephalography (EEG). BCIs usually rely on one of three types of signals: the P300 and other components of the event-related potential (ERP), steady state visual evoked potential (SSVEP), or event related desynchronization (ERD). Although P300 BCIs were introduced over twenty years ago, the past few years have seen a strong increase in P300 BCI research. This closed-loop BCI approach relies on the P300 and other components of the ERP, based on an oddball paradigm presented to the subject. In this paper, we overview the current status of P300 BCI technology, and then discuss new directions: paradigms for eliciting P300s; signal processing methods; applications; and hybrid BCIs. We conclude that P300 BCIs are quite promising, as several emerging directions have not yet been fully explored and could lead to improvements in bit rate, reliability, usability, and flexibility. PMID:22822397

  15. Domestic violence: a challenge to accident and emergency nurses.

    PubMed

    Davies, K; Edwards, L

    1999-01-01

    A wide range of victims of assault are admitted to our Accident and Emergency (A&E) departments. Their injuries vary from minor to severe trauma and multiple injuries. Lloyd (1991) recognized that the victims of domestic violence are usually female and that the aggressor is almost always known to them. Indeed, the person who administers the assault is often the spouse or partner in a relationship in which there is a regular cycle of abuse. While it is sometimes difficult for A&E nurses to remain impartial it is vital that they do so. It is also essential that the A&E nurse is aware of the support networks that are available and how to access them. Patients arriving at the A&E department following an incident of domestic violence often need protection as well as physical and psychological care. This article aims to explore issues of domestic violence that involve the admission of abused females to A&E departments. PMID:10232110

  16. Emerging and re-emerging viruses: A global challenge illustrated by Chikungunya virus outbreaks

    PubMed Central

    Devaux, Christian A

    2012-01-01

    In recent decades, the issue of emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases, especially those related to viruses, has become an increasingly important area of concern in public health. It is of significance to anticipate future epidemics by accumulating knowledge through appropriate research and by monitoring their emergence using indicators from different sources. The objective is to alert and respond effectively in order to reduce the adverse impact on the general populations. Most of the emerging pathogens in humans originate from known zoonosis. These pathogens have been engaged in long-standing and highly successful interactions with their hosts since their origins are exquisitely adapted to host parasitism. They developed strategies aimed at: (1) maximizing invasion rate; (2) selecting host traits that can reduce their impact on host life span and fertility; (3) ensuring timely replication and survival both within host and between hosts; and (4) facilitating reliable transmission to progeny. In this context, Arboviruses (or ARthropod-BOrne viruses), will represent with certainty a threat for the coming century. The unprecedented epidemic of Chikungunya virus which occurred between 2005 and 2006 in the French Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean, followed by several outbreaks in other parts of the world, such as India and Southern Europe, has attracted the attention of medical and state authorities about the risks linked to this re-emerging mosquito-borne virus. This is an excellent model to illustrate the issues we are facing today and to improve how to respond tomorrow. PMID:24175207

  17. Capacity building in emerging space nations: Experiences, challenges and benefits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jason, Susan; da Silva Curiel, Alex; Liddle, Doug; Chizea, Francis; Leloglu, Ugur Murat; Helvaci, Mustafa; Bekhti, Mohammed; Benachir, Djouad; Boland, Lee; Gomes, Luis; Sweeting, Martin

    2010-09-01

    This paper focuses on ways in which space is being used to build capacity in science and technology in order to: Offer increasing support for national and global solutions to current and emerging problems including: how to improve food security; resource management; understanding the impacts of climate change and how to deal with them; improving disaster mitigation, management and response. Support sustainable economic development. We present some of the experiences, lessons learned and benefits gained in capacity building projects undertaken by Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd. and our partners from developing and mature space nations. We focus on the Turkish, Algerian and Nigerian know-how and technology transfer programmes which form part of the first Disaster Monitoring Constellation (DMC) in orbit. From the lessons learned on Surrey's know-how and technology transfer partnership programmes, it is clear that space technology needs to be implemented responsibly as part of a long-term capacity building plan to be a sustainable one. It needs to be supported with appropriate policy and legal frameworks, institutional development, including community participation, human resources development and strengthening of managerial systems. In taking this on board, DMC has resulted in a strong international partnership combining national objectives, humanitarian aid and commerce. The benefits include: Ownership of space-based and supporting ground assets with low capital expenditure that is in line with national budgets of developing nations. Ownership of data and control over data acquisition. More for the money via collaborative consortium. Space related capacity building in organisations and nations with the goal of sustainable development. Opportunities for international collaboration, including disaster management and relief.

  18. Targeting JAK kinase in solid tumors: emerging opportunities and challenges.

    PubMed

    Buchert, M; Burns, C J; Ernst, M

    2016-02-25

    Various human malignancies are characterized by excessive activation of the Janus family of cytoplasmic tyrosine kinases (JAK) and their associated transcription factors STAT3 and STAT5. In the majority of solid tumors, this occurs in response to increased abundance of inflammatory cytokines in the tumor microenvironment prominently produced by infiltrating innate immune cells. Many of these cytokines share common receptor subunits and belong to the interleukin (IL)-6/IL-11, IL-10/IL-22 and IL-12/IL-23 families. Therapeutic inhibition of the JAK/STAT3 pathway potentially offers considerable benefit owing to the capacity of JAK/STAT3 signaling to promote cancer hallmarks in the tumor and its environment, including proliferation, survival, angiogenesis, tumor metabolism while suppressing antitumor immunity. This is further emphasized by the current successful clinical applications of JAK-specific small molecule inhibitors for the treatment of inflammatory disorders and hematopoietic malignancies. Here we review current preclinical applications for JAK inhibitors for the treatment of solid cancers in mice, with a focus on the most common malignancies emanating from oncogenic transformation of the epithelial mucosa in the stomach and colon. Emerging data with small molecule JAK-specific adenosine triphosphate-binding analogs corroborate genetic findings and suggest that interference with the JAK/STAT3 pathway may suppress the growth of the most common forms of sporadic colon cancers that arise from mutations of the APC tumor suppressor gene. Likewise inhibition of cytokine-dependent activation of the JAK/STAT3 pathway may also afford orthogonal treatment opportunities for other oncogene-addicted cancer cells that have gained drug resistance. PMID:25982279

  19. Emergency response to environmental toxic incidents: the role of the occupational physician.

    PubMed

    McCunney, R J

    1996-12-01

    A survey of accidental environmental releases of hazardous chemicals conducted by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry indicates that fixed facility events accounted for 77% of the episodes whereas 23% of the releases were related to transportation activities, such as loading or unloading materials. In nearly all the events (88%) only one chemical was released. Volatile organic compounds, chlorine, herbicides, acids and ammonia were the most common substances involved. In nearly one out of six reported events, an injury occurred. To prepare for emergencies associated with the accidental release of hazardous materials, the federal government, industry and professional organizations including the medical community have all been involved. In the United States, the Superfund Amendment Reauthorization Act (SARA) Title III passed in 1986 addresses the need to establish local emergency planning committees, to report and collect data, and a number of other matters. Professional societies, including the Joint Commission for the Accreditation of Health Care Organizations, the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM), and the American Industrial Hygiene Association, have all attempted to ensure proper education and training of those professionals called to assist in such emergencies. The occupational physician can assume numerous roles in the challenge related to emergency response, by becoming familiar with computerized information available to promptly determine the type of hazard released and its appropriate antidote, advising on the proper personal protective equipment, awareness of secondary contamination and participation on local emergency planning committees among many others. Emergency release of hazardous materials continues to occur with a frequency in the United States that deserves active vigilance and planning. PMID:8987371

  20. Wildlife contact analysis: Emerging methods, questions, and challenges

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cross, Paul C.; Creech, Tyler G.; Ebinger, Michael R.; Heisey, Dennis M.; Irvine, Kathryn M.; Creel, Scott

    2012-01-01

    Recent technological advances, such as proximity loggers, allow researchers to collect complete interaction histories, day and night, among sampled individuals over several months to years. Social network analyses are an obvious approach to analyzing interaction data because of their flexibility for fitting many different social structures as well as the ability to assess both direct contacts and indirect associations via intermediaries. For many network properties, however, it is not clear whether estimates based upon a sample of the network are reflective of the entire network. In wildlife applications, networks may be poorly sampled and boundary effects will be common. We present an alternative approach that utilizes a hierarchical modeling framework to assess the individual, dyadic, and environmental factors contributing to variation in the interaction rates and allows us to estimate the underlying process variation in each. In a disease control context, this approach will allow managers to focus efforts on those types of individuals and environments that contribute the most toward super-spreading events. We account for the sampling distribution of proximity loggers and the non-independence of contacts among groups by only using contact data within a group during days when the group membership of proximity loggers was known. This allows us to separate the two mechanisms responsible for a pair not contacting one another: they were not in the same group or they were in the same group but did not come within the specified contact distance. We illustrate our approach with an example dataset of female elk from northwestern Wyoming and conclude with a number of important future research directions.

  1. Going Extreme For Small Solutions To Big Environmental Challenges

    SciTech Connect

    Bagwell, Christopher E.

    2011-03-31

    This chapter is devoted to the scale, scope, and specific issues confronting the cleanup and long-term disposal of the U.S. nuclear legacy generated during WWII and the Cold War Era. The research reported is aimed at complex microbiological interactions with legacy waste materials generated by past nuclear production activities in the United States. The intended purpose of this research is to identify cost effective solutions to the specific problems (stability) and environmental challenges (fate, transport, exposure) in managing and detoxifying persistent contaminant species. Specifically addressed are high level waste microbiology and bacteria inhabiting plutonium laden soils in the unsaturated subsurface.

  2. Next-generation proteomics faces new challenges in environmental biotechnology.

    PubMed

    Armengaud, Jean

    2016-04-01

    Environmental biotechnology relies on the exploration of novel biological systems and a thorough understanding of the underlying molecular mechanisms. Next-generation proteomics based on the latest generation of mass analyzers currently allows the recording of complete proteomes from any microorganism. Interpreting these data can be straightforward if the genome of the organism is established, or relatively easy to perform through proteogenomics approaches if a draft sequence can be obtained. However, next-generation proteomics faces new, interesting challenges when the organism is distantly related to previously characterized organisms or when mixtures of organisms have to be analyzed. New mass spectrometers and innovative bioinformatics tools are reshaping the possibilities of homology-based proteomics, proteogenomics, and metaproteomics for the characterization of biological systems. Novel time- and cost-effective screening strategies are also possible with this methodology, as exemplified by whole proteome thermal profiling and subpopulation proteomics. The complexity of environmental samples allows for unique developments of approaches and concepts. PMID:26950175

  3. Societal transformation in response to global environmental change: A review of emerging concepts.

    PubMed

    Feola, Giuseppe

    2015-09-01

    The study of societal transformation in response to environmental change has become established, yet little consensus exists regarding the conceptual basis of transformation. This paper aims to provide structure to the dialog on transformation, and to reflect on the challenges of social research in this area. Concepts of transformation are identified through a literature review, and examined using four analytical criteria. It is found that the term 'transformation' is frequently used merely as a metaphor. When transformation is not used as a metaphor, eight concepts are most frequently employed. They differ with respect to (i) system conceptualization, (ii) notions of social consciousness (deliberate/emergent), and (iii) outcome (prescriptive/descriptive). Problem-based research tends to adopt concepts of deliberate transformation with prescriptive outcome, while concepts of emergent transformation with no prescriptive outcome tend to inform descriptive-analytical research. Dialog around the complementarities of different concepts and their empirical testing are priorities for future research. PMID:25431335

  4. Emerging energy and environmental applications of vertically-oriented graphenes.

    PubMed

    Bo, Zheng; Mao, Shun; Han, Zhao Jun; Cen, Kefa; Chen, Junhong; Ostrikov, Kostya Ken

    2015-04-21

    Graphene nanosheets arranged perpendicularly to the substrate surface, i.e., vertically-oriented graphenes (VGs), have many unique morphological and structural features that can lead to exciting properties. Plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition enables the growth of VGs on various substrates using gas, liquid, or solid precursors. Compared with conventional randomly-oriented graphenes, VGs' vertical orientation on the substrate, non-agglomerated morphology, controlled inter-sheet connectivity, as well as sharp and exposed edges make them very promising for a variety of applications. The focus of this tutorial review is on plasma-enabled simple yet efficient synthesis of VGs and their properties that lead to emerging energy and environmental applications, ranging from energy storage, energy conversion, sensing, to green corona discharges for pollution control. PMID:25711336

  5. Radiation grafted adsorbents for newly emerging environmental applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahmoud Nasef, Mohamed; Ting, T. M.; Abbasi, Ali; Layeghi-moghaddam, Alireza; Sara Alinezhad, S.; Hashim, Kamaruddin

    2016-01-01

    Radiation induced grafting (RIG) is acquired to prepare a number of adsorbents for newly emerging environmental applications using a single route involving RIG of glycidymethacrylate (GMA) onto polyethylene-polypropylene (PE-PP) non-woven fabric. The grafted fabric was subjected to one of three functionalization reactions to impart desired ionic characters. This included treatment with (1) N-dimethyl-D-glucamine, (2) triethylamine and (3) triethylamine and alkalisation with KOH. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and scanning electron microscope (SEM) were used to study the changes in chemical and physical structures of the obtained fibrous adsorbents. The potential applications of the three adsorbents for removal of boron from solutions, capturing CO2 from CO2/N2 mixtures and catalysing transesterification of triacetin/methanol to methyl acetate (biodiesel) were explored. The obtained fibrous adsorbents provide potential alternatives to granular resins for the investigated applications and require further development.

  6. Caenorhabditis elegans: An Emerging Model in Biomedical and Environmental Toxicology

    PubMed Central

    Leung, Maxwell C. K.; Williams, Phillip L.; Benedetto, Alexandre; Au, Catherine; Helmcke, Kirsten J.; Aschner, Michael; Meyer, Joel N.

    2008-01-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has emerged as an important animal model in various fields including neurobiology, developmental biology, and genetics. Characteristics of this animal model that have contributed to its success include its genetic manipulability, invariant and fully described developmental program, well-characterized genome, ease of maintenance, short and prolific life cycle, and small body size. These same features have led to an increasing use of C. elegans in toxicology, both for mechanistic studies and high-throughput screening approaches. We describe some of the research that has been carried out in the areas of neurotoxicology, genetic toxicology, and environmental toxicology, as well as high-throughput experiments with C. elegans including genome-wide screening for molecular targets of toxicity and rapid toxicity assessment for new chemicals. We argue for an increased role for C. elegans in complementing other model systems in toxicological research. PMID:18566021

  7. Which coastal and marine environmental contaminants are truly emerging?

    PubMed

    Maruya, Keith A; Dodder, Nathan G; Tang, Chi-Li; Lao, Wenjian; Tsukada, David

    2015-02-01

    To better understand the past and present impact of contaminants of emerging concern (CECs) in coastal and marine ecosystems, archived samples were analyzed for a broad suite of analytes, including pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs), flame retardants (including PBDEs), perfluorinated compounds (PFCs), and current-use pesticides. Surface sediment, mussels (Mytilus spp.) and sediment core samples collected from the California (USA) coast were obtained from environmental specimen banks. Selected CECs were detected in recent surface sediments, with nonylphenol (4-NP), its mono- and di-ethoxylates (NP1EO and NP2EO), triclocarban, and pyrethroid insecticides in the greatest abundance. Alkylphenols, triclocarban, and triclosan were present in sediment core segments from the 1970s, as well as in Mytilus tissue collected during the 1990s. Increasing concentrations of some CECs (e.g., miconazole, triclosan) were observed in the surface layers (ca. 2007) of a sediment core, in contrast to peak concentrations of 4-NP and triclocarban corresponding to input during the 1970s, and an apparent peak input for PBDEs during the 1990s. These results suggest that chemicals sometimes referred to as "emerging" (e.g., alkylphenols, triclocarban) have been present in the aquatic environment for several decades and are decreasing in concentration, whereas others (e.g., miconazole, triclosan) are increasing. PMID:24743956

  8. Managing and Integrating Open Environmental Data - Technological Requirements and Challenges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Devaraju, Anusuriya; Kunkel, Ralf; Jirka, Simon

    2014-05-01

    Understanding environment conditions and trends requires information. This information is usually generated from sensor observations. Today, several infrastructures (e.g., GEOSS, EarthScope, NEON, NETLAKE, OOI, TERENO, WASCAL, and PEER-EurAqua) have been deployed to promote full and open exchange of environmental data. Standards for interfaces as well as data models/formats (OGC, CUAHSI, INSPIRE, SEE Grid, ISO) and open source tools have been developed to support seamless data exchange between various domains and organizations. In spite of this growing interest, it remains a challenge to manage and integrate open environmental data on the fly due to the distributed and heterogeneous nature of the data. Intuitive tools and standardized interfaces are vital to hide the technical complexity of underlying data management infrastructures. Meaningful descriptions of raw sensor data are necessary to achieve interoperability among different sources. As raw sensor data sets usually goes through several layers of summarization and aggregation, metadata and quality measures associated with these should be captured. Further processing of sensor data sets requires that they should be made compatible with existing environmental models. We need data policies and management plans on how to handle and publish open sensor data coming from different institutions. Clearly, a better management and usability of open environmental data is crucial, not only to gather large amounts of data, but also to cater various aspects such as data integration, privacy and trust, uncertainty, quality control, visualization, and data management policies. The proposed talk presents several key findings in terms of requirements, ongoing developments and technical challenges concerning these aspects from our recent work. This includes two workshops on open observation data and supporting tools, as well as the long-term environmental monitoring initiatives such as TERENO and TERENO-MED. Workshops Details

  9. Environmental cleanup: The challenge at the Hanford Site, Washington, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gray, Robert H.; Becker, C. Dale

    1993-07-01

    Numerous challenges face those involved with developing a coordinated and consistent approach to cleaning up the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Hanford Site in southeastern Washington. These challenges are much greater than those encountered when the site was selected and the world’s first nuclear complex was developed almost 50 years ago. This article reviews Hanford’s history, operations, waste storage/disposal activities, environmental monitoring, and today’s approach to characterize and clean up Hanford under a Federal Facility Agreement and Consent Order, signed by DOE, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Washington Sate Department of Ecology. Although cleanup of defense-related waste at Hanford holds many positive benefits, negative features include high costs to the US taxpayer, numerous uncertainties concerning the technologies to be employed and the risks involved, and the high probability that special interest groups and activists at large will never be completely satisfied. Issues concerning future use of the site, whether to protect and preserve its natural features or open it to public exploitation, remain to be resolved.

  10. The Emergence of Environmental Homeostasis in Complex Ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Dyke, James G.; Weaver, Iain S.

    2013-01-01

    The Earth, with its core-driven magnetic field, convective mantle, mobile lid tectonics, oceans of liquid water, dynamic climate and abundant life is arguably the most complex system in the known universe. This system has exhibited stability in the sense of, bar a number of notable exceptions, surface temperature remaining within the bounds required for liquid water and so a significant biosphere. Explanations for this range from anthropic principles in which the Earth was essentially lucky, to homeostatic Gaia in which the abiotic and biotic components of the Earth system self-organise into homeostatic states that are robust to a wide range of external perturbations. Here we present results from a conceptual model that demonstrates the emergence of homeostasis as a consequence of the feedback loop operating between life and its environment. Formulating the model in terms of Gaussian processes allows the development of novel computational methods in order to provide solutions. We find that the stability of this system will typically increase then remain constant with an increase in biological diversity and that the number of attractors within the phase space exponentially increases with the number of environmental variables while the probability of the system being in an attractor that lies within prescribed boundaries decreases approximately linearly. We argue that the cybernetic concept of rein control provides insights into how this model system, and potentially any system that is comprised of biological to environmental feedback loops, self-organises into homeostatic states. PMID:23696719

  11. Application of Emerging Pharmaceutical Technologies for Therapeutic Challenges of Space Exploration Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Putcha, Lakshmi

    2011-01-01

    An important requirement of therapeutics for extended duration exploration missions beyond low Earth orbit will be the development of pharmaceutical technologies suitable for sustained and preventive health care in remote and adverse environmental conditions. Availability of sustained, stable and targeted delivery pharmaceuticals for preventive health of major organ systems including gastrointestinal, hepato-renal, musculo-skeletal and immune function are essential to offset adverse effects of space environment beyond low Earth orbit. Specifically, medical needs may include multi-drug combinations for hormone replacement, radiation protection, immune enhancement and organ function restoration. Additionally, extended stability of pharmaceuticals dispensed in space must be also considered in future drug development. Emerging technologies that can deliver stable and multi-therapy pharmaceutical preparations and delivery systems include nanotechnology based drug delivery platforms, targeted-delivery systems in non-oral and non-parenteral formulation matrices. Synthetic nanomaterials designed with molecular precision offer defined structures, electronics, and chemistries to be efficient drug carriers with clear advantages over conventional materials of drug delivery matricies. Nano-carrier materials like the bottle brush polymers may be suitable for systemic delivery of drug cocktails while Superparamagnetic Iron Oxide Nanoparticles or (SPIONS) have great potential to serve as carriers for targeted drug delivery to a specific site. These and other emerging concepts of drug delivery and extended shelf-life technologies will be reviewed in light of their application to address health-care challenges of exploration missions. Innovations in alternate treatments for sustained immune enhancement and infection control will be also discussed.

  12. Toward integrated environmental management for challenges in water environmental protection of Lake Taihu basin in China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qin'Geng; Gu, Gang; Higano, Yoshiro

    2006-05-01

    Lake Taihu is the third largest freshwater lake in China. It serves many social, economic, and ecological purposes in the drainage basin. Unfortunately, the water has been heavily polluted due to rapid industrialization and urbanization during the last two decades. Notwithstanding great efforts made so far to improve the water quality, the environmental situation is still far from being optimistic. The basin and the lake are facing a range of severe environmental challenges: rapid socio-economic development continues to place great pressures on the environment, current pollution control projects have many problems from the viewpoint of effectiveness and efficiency of their implementations, and the non-point sources of pollution such as agricultural fields, for which control is more difficult than for industrial point sources, have become the main contributors to serious eutrophication of the lake. Considering the characteristics of the environmental challenges and problems confronting the basin and the lake, we focus on integrated environmental management (IEM) as a promising and effective approach to overcome these predicaments. Current practices and problems of environmental management in the basin are examined, and potential future developments are discussed. Three aspects of the IEM are emphasized: institutional cooperation, public participation, and internalization of environmental externalities. We think these are the most critical for not only the basin but also for the whole of China to achieve a sustainable society. PMID:16508802

  13. Environmental health in China: challenges to achieving clean air and safe water

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Junfeng (Jim); Mauzerall, Denise L.; Zhu, Tong; Liang, Song; Ezzati, Majid; Remais, Justin

    2014-01-01

    The health effects of environmental risks, especially those of air and water pollution, remain a major source of morbidity and mortality in China. Biomass fuel and coal are routinely burned for cooking and heating in almost all rural and many urban households resulting in severe indoor air pollution that contributes greatly to the burden of disease. Many communities lack access to safe drinking water and santiation, and thus the risk of waterborne disease in many regions remains high. At the same time, China is rapidly industrializing with associated increases in energy use and industrial waste. While economic growth resulting from industrialization has improved health and quality of life indicators in China, it has also increased the incidence of environmental disasters and the release of chemical toxins into the environment, with severe impacts on health. Air quality in China's cities is among the worst in the world and industrial water pollution has become a widespread health hazard. Moreover, emissions of climate-warming greenhouse gases from energy use are rapidly increasing. Global climate change will inevitably intensify China's environmental health problems, with potentially catastrophic outcomes from major shifts in temperature and precipitation. Facing the overlap of traditional, modern, and emerging environmental problems, China has committed substantial resources to environmental improvement. China has the opportunity to both address its national environmental health challenges and to assume a central role in the international effort to improve the global environment. PMID:20346817

  14. Organic livestock production: an emerging opportunity with new challenges for producers in tropical countries.

    PubMed

    Chander, M; Subrahmanyeswari, B; Mukherjee, R; Kumar, S

    2011-12-01

    Agrochemicals, veterinary drugs, antibiotics and improved feeds can increase the food supply while minimising production costs in various livestock production systems around the world. However, these days, quality-conscious consumers are increasingly seeking environmentally safe, chemical-residue-free healthy foods, along with product traceability and a high standard of animal welfare, which organic production methods are said to ensure. Organic production is not only a challenge for producers in developing countries, it offers new export opportunities as well. Organic agriculture is practised by 1.8 million producers in 160 countries, and production of organically grown food continues to increase steadily by 15% per year. Most tropical countries are now exporting organic agricultural products but, apart from organic beef from Brazil and Argentina, organic livestock products are yetto take off. Most trade in organic livestock products is restricted to the European Union and other developed nations. Nevertheless, tropical countries cannot afford to neglect this emerging system of animal production. Organic production is knowledge- and management-intensive. Producers must be well versed in organic production standards, principles and practices, which require a high degree of knowledge and skill. In organic production, it is not simply the final product but the whole production process that must be inspected and approved by the accredited certification bodies. Organic livestock farming is still evolving, and further research is needed to make it sustainable. In this paper, the authors review the prospects of organic animal husbandry and its possible constraints in developing and tropical countries. PMID:22435208

  15. Environmental noise-a challenge for an acoustical engineer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Genuit, Klaus

    2003-10-01

    People live in a landscape full of noises which are composed of both natural environmental noises and technically created sounds. Regarding environmental noise, more and more people feel heavily annoyed by noises. Noise is defined as an audible sound which either disturbs the silence or an intentional sound listening or leads to annoyance. Thus, it is clearly defined that the assignment of noise cannot be reduced to simple determining objective parameters such as the A-weighted sound pressure level or the equivalent continuous sound pressure level. The question of whether a sound is judged as noise can only be made after the transformation from the sound event into an auditory event has been accomplished. The evaluation of noise depends on the physical characteristics of the sound event, on the psycho-acoustical features of the human ear, as well as on the psychological aspects of man. For the acoustical design of environmental noise and in order to create a better soundscape the acoustical engineer has to consider these aspects. That means a specific challenge for the sound engineering.

  16. Challenges to institutionalizing strategic environmental assessment: The case of Vietnam

    SciTech Connect

    Slunge, Daniel; Tran, Trang Thi Huyen

    2014-09-15

    Building on new institutional theory, this paper develops an analytical framework for analyzing constraints to the institutionalization of strategic environmental assessment (SEA) at four different institutional levels. The framework is tested in an empirical analysis of the environmental assessment system in Vietnam, which is a frontrunner among developing countries regarding the introduction and use of SEA. Building on interviews with Vietnamese and international experts, as well as an extensive literature review, we identify institutional constraints which challenge the effective use of SEA in Vietnam. We conclude that commonly identified constraints, such as inadequate training, technical guidelines, baseline data and financial resources, are strongly linked to constraints at higher institutional levels, such as incentives to not share information between ministries and severe restrictions on access to information and public participation. Without a thorough understanding of these institutional constraints, there is a risk that attempts to improve the use of SEA are misdirected. Thus, a careful institutional analysis should guide efforts to introduce and improve the use of SEA in Vietnam and other developing countries. The analytical framework for analyzing constraints to institutionalization of SEA presented in this paper represents a systematic effort in this direction. - Highlights: • A framework for analyzing constraints to institutionalizing SEA is developed • Empirical analysis of the strategic environmental assessment system in Vietnam • Constraints in the action arena linked to deeper institutional constraints • Institutional analysis needed prior to introducing SEA in developing countries.

  17. Prehospital Emergency Ultrasound: A Review of Current Clinical Applications, Challenges, and Future Implications

    PubMed Central

    El Sayed, Mazen J.

    2013-01-01

    Imaging modalities in the prehospital setting are helpful in the evaluation and management of time-sensitive emergency conditions. Ultrasound is the main modality that has been applied by emergency medical services (EMS) providers in the field. This paper examines the clinical applications of ultrasound in the prehospital setting. Specific focus is on applications that provide essential information to guide triage and management of critical patients. Challenges of this modality are also described in terms of cost impact on EMS agencies, provider training, and skill maintenance in addition to challenges related to the technical aspect of ultrasound. PMID:24171113

  18. Emergency Manual. Resident Outdoor Environmental Education School 1982-1983.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Orange County Dept. of Education, Santa Ana, CA.

    The emergency manual for the Orange County Outdoor School provides phone numbers, procedures, safety rules, and plans in case of an emergency. Phone numbers are listed for fire and medical emergencies, police, and highway department. General emergency procedures are outlined in case of fire, vandalism, accidents, illness, power failure, animal…

  19. Environmental ethics and professional practice: A case study of an environmental challenge for century 2000

    SciTech Connect

    Malone, C.

    1995-12-01

    Objective resolution of environmental issues involves questions of facts and values, and, for environmental issues to be resolved ethically, a proper synthesis of environmental facts with questions of ethics must occur. In this case study, the proposal by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to use the Yucca Mountain site in southwest Nevada as a deep geologic repository for the permanent disposal of the nation`s high-level nuclear waste is examined in part in the context of the {open_quotes}Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice for Environmental Professionals{close_quotes} adopted by the National Association of Environmental Professionals (NAEP). Current plans are that a repository at the Yucca Mountain site would begin functioning in 2010 and would be sealed after about 150 years. The requirement that a geologic repository must isolate nuclear waste from the environment for at least 10,000 years poses unique challenges to environmental professionals. This case study also analyzes the challenges in terms of the implications of a new federal Executive Order on Ecosystem Management and corresponding internal orders within all federal agencies to conform to the Executive Order. The imposition of the principles and practices of ecosystem-based resource management on federal agencies provides an opportunity to also address, in the context of the DOE Yucca Mountain Project, (1) the ecosystem approach to environmental management, (2) concepts of holistic resource management planning, and (3) the concepts of sustainability and biodiversity. Within this framework there are important implications for environmental ethics and professional practice that must remain at the forefront of concerns of the NAEP over the next two decades.

  20. University-Based Child Development Laboratory Programs: Emerging Issues and Challenges.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McBride, Brent A.

    Although child development laboratory programs continue to be important players in the child development and early childhood arenas, these programs face a number of emerging issues and challenges as they seek to solidify their support on campuses nationwide. Child development lab programs have been charged to serve as: (1) sites for personnel…

  1. Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in Nigeria Educational Assessment System--Emerging Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aworanti, Olatunde Awotokun

    2016-01-01

    This paper examines Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in Nigeria educational assessment system with its emerging challenges. This is inevitable following the globalisation trend which has brought drastic changes in the world of technology. The essence of the paper is to describe the present status of ICT in the Nigeria educational…

  2. Meeting Developmental Challenges during Emerging Adulthood: The Role of Personality and Social Resources

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shulman, Shmuel; Kalnitzki, Esther; Shahar, Golan

    2009-01-01

    A one-year follow-up study examined the role of developmental challenges, personality (dependency, self-criticism, and personal efficacy), and support systems in adaptation among Israeli emerging adults (N = 236) participating in a preparatory academic program. Participants were assessed during their enrollment in the preparatory academic program…

  3. Challenges for Environmental Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, X.; Davis, T. W.

    2013-12-01

    There are many challenges posed to researchers looking to collect eco-hydrological information with monitoring systems exposed to the natural environment due, in part, to the unpredictable interactions between the environment and the wireless hardware and the scale of the deployment. While wireless sensor network technology has introduced autonomy and pervasiveness to studying the environment, it is not a panacea for outdoor monitoring systems. Despite the fact that each outdoor deployment will encounter its own unique set of challenges, it is often a benefit to researchers to know what problems were faced during other deployments and how these problems were mitigated or solved. This work examines a long-term (i.e., multi-year) environmental wireless sensor network which was deployed in a forested hill-sloped region of western Pennsylvania, USA and the main challenges that were encountered. These include: (1) the startup and maintenance costs of the wireless network; (2) the data collection system and remote access to the network; (3) the security of the network hardware and software; and (4) the reliability of wireless network connectivity. Based on our field study, it was found that while wireless sensor networks (WSNs) have less expensive startup costs compared to similarly sized wired systems (such as data logging), the WSN has relatively high maintenance costs as it requires frequent site visits (mean of 38 days per wireless node). One possible way to reduce the maintenance costs is by adjusting the sampling and/or collection frequency of the wireless nodes. In addition to the high maintenance costs, wireless communications, especially over complex networks, have low success rates of data capture from the field (approximately 50%). Environmental conditions, such as background noise, interference and weather conditions, may significantly influence the wireless communications. Technological advancements (such as smart sampling and data compression) are being

  4. Bottom-up risk regulation? How nanotechnology risk knowledge gaps challenge federal and state environmental agencies.

    PubMed

    Powell, Maria C; Griffin, Martin P A; Tai, Stephanie

    2008-09-01

    Nanotechnologies have been called the "Next Industrial Revolution." At the same time, scientists are raising concerns about the potential health and environmental risks related to the nano-sized materials used in nanotechnologies. Analyses suggest that current U.S. federal regulatory structures are not likely to adequately address these risks in a proactive manner. Given these trends, the premise of this paper is that state and local-level agencies will likely deal with many "end-of-pipe" issues as nanomaterials enter environmental media without prior toxicity testing, federal standards, or emissions controls. In this paper we (1) briefly describe potential environmental risks and benefits related to emerging nanotechnologies; (2) outline the capacities of the Toxic Substances Control Act, the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Resources Conservation and Recovery Act to address potential nanotechnology risks, and how risk data gaps challenge these regulations; (3) outline some of the key data gaps that challenge state-level regulatory capacities to address nanotechnologies' potential risks, using Wisconsin as a case study; and (4) discuss advantages and disadvantages of state versus federal approaches to nanotechnology risk regulation. In summary, we suggest some ways government agencies can be better prepared to address nanotechnology risk knowledge gaps and risk management. PMID:18543023

  5. Addressing China's grand challenge of achieving food security while ensuring environmental sustainability.

    PubMed

    Lu, Yonglong; Jenkins, Alan; Ferrier, Robert C; Bailey, Mark; Gordon, Iain J; Song, Shuai; Huang, Jikun; Jia, Shaofeng; Zhang, Fusuo; Liu, Xuejun; Feng, Zhaozhong; Zhang, Zhibin

    2015-02-01

    China's increasingly urbanized and wealthy population is driving a growing and changing demand for food, which might not be met without significant increase in agricultural productivity and sustainable use of natural resources. Given the past relationship between lack of access to affordable food and political instability, food security has to be given a high priority on national political agendas in the context of globalization. The drive for increased food production has had a significant impact on the environment, and the deterioration in ecosystem quality due to historic and current levels of pollution will potentially compromise the food production system in China. We discuss the grand challenges of not only producing more food but also producing it sustainably and without environmental degradation. In addressing these challenges, food production should be considered as part of an environmental system (soil, air, water, and biodiversity) and not independent from it. It is imperative that new ways of meeting the demand for food are developed while safeguarding the natural resources upon which food production is based. We present a holistic approach to both science and policy to ensure future food security while embracing the ambition of achieving environmental sustainability in China. It is a unique opportunity for China to be a role model as a new global player, especially for other emerging economies. PMID:26601127

  6. Addressing China’s grand challenge of achieving food security while ensuring environmental sustainability

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Yonglong; Jenkins, Alan; Ferrier, Robert C.; Bailey, Mark; Gordon, Iain J.; Song, Shuai; Huang, Jikun; Jia, Shaofeng; Zhang, Fusuo; Liu, Xuejun; Feng, Zhaozhong; Zhang, Zhibin

    2015-01-01

    China’s increasingly urbanized and wealthy population is driving a growing and changing demand for food, which might not be met without significant increase in agricultural productivity and sustainable use of natural resources. Given the past relationship between lack of access to affordable food and political instability, food security has to be given a high priority on national political agendas in the context of globalization. The drive for increased food production has had a significant impact on the environment, and the deterioration in ecosystem quality due to historic and current levels of pollution will potentially compromise the food production system in China. We discuss the grand challenges of not only producing more food but also producing it sustainably and without environmental degradation. In addressing these challenges, food production should be considered as part of an environmental system (soil, air, water, and biodiversity) and not independent from it. It is imperative that new ways of meeting the demand for food are developed while safeguarding the natural resources upon which food production is based. We present a holistic approach to both science and policy to ensure future food security while embracing the ambition of achieving environmental sustainability in China. It is a unique opportunity for China to be a role model as a new global player, especially for other emerging economies. PMID:26601127

  7. Bottom-Up Risk Regulation? How Nanotechnology Risk Knowledge Gaps Challenge Federal and State Environmental Agencies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Powell, Maria C.; Griffin, Martin P. A.; Tai, Stephanie

    2008-09-01

    Nanotechnologies have been called the “Next Industrial Revolution.” At the same time, scientists are raising concerns about the potential health and environmental risks related to the nano-sized materials used in nanotechnologies. Analyses suggest that current U.S. federal regulatory structures are not likely to adequately address these risks in a proactive manner. Given these trends, the premise of this paper is that state and local-level agencies will likely deal with many “end-of-pipe” issues as nanomaterials enter environmental media without prior toxicity testing, federal standards, or emissions controls. In this paper we (1) briefly describe potential environmental risks and benefits related to emerging nanotechnologies; (2) outline the capacities of the Toxic Substances Control Act, the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Resources Conservation and Recovery Act to address potential nanotechnology risks, and how risk data gaps challenge these regulations; (3) outline some of the key data gaps that challenge state-level regulatory capacities to address nanotechnologies’ potential risks, using Wisconsin as a case study; and (4) discuss advantages and disadvantages of state versus federal approaches to nanotechnology risk regulation. In summary, we suggest some ways government agencies can be better prepared to address nanotechnology risk knowledge gaps and risk management.

  8. Environmental Hydrological Education in Ukraine: Present State and New Challenges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manukalo, Viacheslav

    2010-05-01

    In order to protect waters from damages, improve water-environmental quality and mitigate water-related disasters need the advanced science and technology, sufficient investment and appropriate management. All of these need an effective education and training in the hydrology as the part of water - related sciences. The education in the hydrology is the part of national water-related activity in Ukraine. The needs in the quality of hydrological education will increase as the introduction of new ideas and techniques into practice of water resources planners and managers become comparative. Environmentally oriented water resources development, inherent challenges of man-made and climate change impact on waters have to be tackled worldwide by well trained engineers and scientist relying on modern technology. Ukraine has more than 70 years of experience in the training of hydrologists. At the present hydrologists of B.Sc., M. Sc. and Ph D levels are trained at the Odesa State Environmental University (on the engineering basis) and at the Faculty of Geography of the Kyiv National University (on the geographical basis). The Geographical training of hydrologists at the Kyiv National University provides deeper understanding of natural processes in rivers, lakes and reservoirs, to view them in geographical complex with other physiogeographical phenomena. For this purpose students study geology, geomorphology, biology, meteorology, soil science, physical geography etc. The graduate hydrologists work in the organizations of the State Hydrometeorological Service, the State Committee for Water Management, the Academy of Sciences, others governmental and private organizations. The requirements for hydrologists of these organizations are different in context and scope. This leads to the conclusion that a level of training of hydrologists should have a wide-scope in education. This is achieved by the university-wide fundamental and general geographic training during first and

  9. Emerging pollutants in the environment: present and future challenges in biomonitoring, ecological risks and bioremediation.

    PubMed

    Gavrilescu, Maria; Demnerová, Kateřina; Aamand, Jens; Agathos, Spiros; Fava, Fabio

    2015-01-25

    Emerging pollutants reach the environment from various anthropogenic sources and are distributed throughout environmental matrices. Although great advances have been made in the detection and analysis of trace pollutants during recent decades, due to the continued development and refinement of specific techniques, a wide array of undetected contaminants of emerging environmental concern need to be identified and quantified in various environmental components and biological tissues. These pollutants may be mobile and persistent in air, water, soil, sediments and ecological receptors even at low concentrations. Robust data on their fate and behaviour in the environment, as well as on threats to ecological and human health, are still lacking. Moreover, the ecotoxicological significance of some emerging micropollutants remains largely unknown, because satisfactory data to determine their risk often do not exist. This paper discusses the fate, behaviour, (bio)monitoring, environmental and health risks associated with emerging chemical (pharmaceuticals, endocrine disruptors, hormones, toxins, among others) and biological (bacteria, viruses) micropollutants in soils, sediments, groundwater, industrial and municipal wastewaters, aquaculture effluents, and freshwater and marine ecosystems, and highlights new horizons for their (bio)removal. Our study aims to demonstrate the imperative need to boost research and innovation for new and cost-effective treatment technologies, in line with the uptake, mode of action and consequences of each emerging contaminant. We also address the topic of innovative tools for the evaluation of the effects of toxicity on human health and for the prediction of microbial availability and degradation in the environment. Additionally, we consider the development of (bio)sensors to perform environmental monitoring in real-time mode. This needs to address multiple species, along with a more effective exploitation of specialised microbes or enzymes

  10. Confronting Ethical and Regulatory Challenges of Emergency Care Research With Conscious Patients.

    PubMed

    Dickert, Neal W; Brown, Jeremy; Cairns, Charles B; Eaves-Leanos, Aaliyah; Goldkind, Sara F; Kim, Scott Y H; Nichol, Graham; O'Conor, Katie J; Scott, Jane D; Sinert, Richard; Wendler, David; Wright, David W; Silbergleit, Robert

    2016-04-01

    Barriers to informed consent are ubiquitous in the conduct of emergency care research across a wide range of conditions and clinical contexts. They are largely unavoidable; can be related to time constraints, physical symptoms, emotional stress, and cognitive impairment; and affect patients and surrogates. US regulations permit an exception from informed consent for certain clinical trials in emergency settings, but these regulations have generally been used to facilitate trials in which patients are unconscious and no surrogate is available. Most emergency care research, however, involves conscious patients, and surrogates are often available. Unfortunately, there is neither clear regulatory guidance nor established ethical standards in regard to consent in these settings. In this report-the result of a workshop convened by the National Institutes of Health Office of Emergency Care Research and Department of Bioethics to address ethical challenges in emergency care research-we clarify potential gaps in ethical understanding and federal regulations about research in emergency care in which limited involvement of patients or surrogates in enrollment decisions is possible. We propose a spectrum of approaches directed toward realistic ethical goals and a research and policy agenda for addressing these issues to facilitate clinical research necessary to improve emergency care. PMID:26707358

  11. Meeting the emerging challenge of breast and cervical cancer in low- and middle-income countries.

    PubMed

    Knaul, Felicia M; Bhadelia, Afsan; Gralow, Julie; Arreola-Ornelas, Héctor; Langer, Ana; Frenk, Julio

    2012-10-01

    Cancer, particularly when it affects women and reproductive health, epitomizes the complexities and inequities of the epidemiological challenge faced by low- and middle-income countries. Women in resource-poor settings face a double cancer burden: the backlog of preventable cancer, and the emerging challenge of cancers that cannot be prevented but whose impact could be dramatically reduced through early detection and treatment. Disparities in cancer incidence, mortality, and other health and non-health outcomes are exacerbated by gender inequity and compounded by discrimination and stigma. The combination of these barriers implies a multiplicative challenge for women who face cancer, particularly when the disease is associated with reproduction. The horizons of maternal and reproductive health should extend to include the life cycle of healthy changes and illness that are embodied in longer life for women. Numerous opportunities exist to strengthen health systems through sexual and reproductive and women and health platforms and better meet the challenge of cancer. PMID:22883910

  12. Environmental exposure scenarios: development, challenges and possible solutions.

    PubMed

    Ahrens, Andreas; Traas, Theo P

    2007-12-01

    Under the new REACH system, companies importing, producing and marketing chemical substances will be obliged to register the single substances and to carry out a safety assessment for all identified uses during the life cycle of the substance. This duty will apply to about 10,000 existing substances in the EU market exceeding an annual production or import volume of 10 t per company. If the substance is already known to be dangerous or turns out to be dangerous(1) during the hazard assessment, the registrant is obliged to carry out an exposure assessment and a risk characterisation for all identified uses. The goal of the safety assessment is to define the conditions of use that allow for adequate control of risk with regard to health and safety at the work place, consumer safety and protection of the environment. Once the registrant has established and documented these conditions in the Chemicals Safety Report (CSR), that information is to be communicated down the supply chain by means of the Extended Safety Data Sheet (eSDS). The ultimate aim of the new legislation is to establish duties and mechanisms that systematically prevent or limit exposure to dangerous industrial chemicals. The current paper explains this concept with regard to environmental exposure and highlights the challenges and possible solutions. PMID:18000528

  13. The Emerging Adult with Inflammatory Bowel Disease: Challenges and Recommendations for the Adult Gastroenterologist

    PubMed Central

    Keefer, Laurie

    2015-01-01

    Incidence of pediatric inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is rising. Adult gastroenterologists are seeing increasing numbers of young adults with IBD, a subpopulation with unique needs and challenges that can impair their readiness to thrive in an adult healthcare system. Most adult gastroenterologists might not have the training or resources to address these needs. “Emerging adulthood” is a useful developmental lens through which this group can be studied. With complex disease phenotype and specific concerns of medication side effects and reproductive health, compounded by challenges of geographical and social flux and lack of adequate health insurance, emerging adults with IBD (EAI) are at risk of disrupted care with lack of continuity. Lessons learned from structured healthcare transition process from pediatric to adult services can be applied towards challenges in ongoing care of this population in the adult healthcare system. This paper provides an overview of the challenges in caring for the post transition EAI from the perspective of adult gastroenterologists and offers a checklist of provider and patient skills that enable effective care. This paper discusses the system-based challenges in care provision and search for meaningful patient-oriented outcomes and presents a conceptual model of determinants of continuity of care in this unique population. PMID:26064089

  14. The Role of Environmental Print in Emergent Literacy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Neumann, Michelle M.; Hood, Michelle; Ford, Ruth M.; Neumann, David L.

    2012-01-01

    Young children are surrounded by environmental print on a daily basis. Through their visual exploration of environmental print, coupled with sociocultural experiences, children gain valuable semantic and symbolic knowledge as they make sense of their world. The aim of this review is to examine the question of whether environmental print has value…

  15. The impact of globalization and environmental change on health: challenges for nurse education.

    PubMed

    Kirk, Maggie

    2002-01-01

    The environment is an established domain of nursing knowledge, but some authors argue that the traditional perspective is too narrowly focused on the immediate environment to appreciate the relevance of the global environment. This article explores how human activities are bringing about global changes through their impact on biogeochemical cycles, land use and mobility of organisms, altering biodiversity and climate, and ultimately compromising the ecosystems services that sustain our planet. The consequences of global change for population health are examined, including the emergence of drug-resistant diseases, and the implications of climate warming and pollution for health. Addressing these issues presents a considerable challenge for nursing at all levels, in promoting sustainable policies, integrating environmental considerations into clinical practice, and in the nursing role as health educators. The greatest challenge is to education, to raise awareness of the relevance and importance of the global environment to health, and to empower nurses with sufficient understanding of the issues to apply them to practice, participate in debate and contribute to policy-making that aims to reduce the burden of global changes. The extent to which the profession is prepared to diversify in response to these challenges is discussed. PMID:11886231

  16. Challenging the dominant logic of Emergency Departments: guidelines from chaos theory.

    PubMed

    Chinnis, A; White, K R

    1999-01-01

    Chaos is order without predictability (1 ). Any unfortunate patient who has recently made a trek to an Emergency Department (ED) or even better, has watched the immensely popular TV show, ER, knows that the visit can be a frustrating and a time consuming experience. The waits are so protracted that one can observe all cycles of birth, death, love, and romance in the waiting room. The process is tedious for the patient who must tell one's tale to a triage nurse, a registration clerk, the primary nurse, the nursing care partner, and finally the emergency physician. Then, the patient must face more delays while being pushed, ineffectively, in a horizontal fashion, through vertical functional silos of care, such as laboratory and radiology. The mind-set or dominant logic of this system of ED patient flow assumes that waits are acceptable and unavoidable, and that the function of the ED is to care for only the truly emergent patient. This dominant logic, coupled with the market constraints of population-based versus case-based payment mechanisms, has led to a declining trend in ED visits for the first time in 20 years (2). In order to improve the quality of ED care as well as to increase acceptability for patient and payer, the dominant logic must be challenged. An understanding of chaos theory and perception of the Emergency Department as a complex adaptive system foster methods for challenging the dominant logic. PMID:10595896

  17. ADDRESSING ENVIRONMENTAL ENGINEERING CHALLENGES WITH COMPUTATIONAL FLUID DYNAMICS

    EPA Science Inventory

    In the field of environmental engineering, modeling tools are playing an ever larger role in addressing air quality issues, including source pollutant emissions, atmospheric dispersion and human exposure risks. More detailed modeling of environmental flows requires tools for c...

  18. ENVIRONMENTAL HELATH INDICATORS-DIVERSE PROGRAMS, COMMON METHODOLOGICAL CHALLENGES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Abstract: Environmental Health Indicators are quantitative measures of important environmental health factors that can be used to identify specific areas and populations for intervention and prevention efforts and to evaluate the outcomes of implemented policies or programs for ...

  19. The Role of Adaptability in Tackling Climate and Environmental Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martin, Andrew J.; Liem, Gregory Arief D.

    2015-01-01

    Adaptability is our capacity to respond to change, uncertainty, and variability. We report on recent research investigating how young people's adaptability is related to their environmental awareness, environmental concerns, and pro-environmental attitudes that support the need for policy and action to sustain the environment.

  20. The Development of Responsible Environmental Citizenship: A Critical Challenge.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hungerford, Harold R.

    1996-01-01

    Traditional thinking links environmental knowledge to awareness followed by action. However, research suggests that environmental education would be more effective if based on levels of variables involved in environmental citizenship behavior: entry-level (sensitivity, ecology knowledge, androgyny, attitudes); ownership (knowledge of issues,…

  1. Meeting in Dallas: Emerging Environmental Contaminants: What's New

    EPA Science Inventory

    Scientific meeting presentation. Much has been achieved in the way of environmental protection over the last 30 years. However, as we learn more, new concerns arise (including potential adverse health effects, bioaccumulation, and widespread distribution). This presentation will...

  2. Epidemiology of nontuberculous mycobacteria, an emerging environmental pathogen

    EPA Science Inventory

    Nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) is an environmentally transmitted pathogen primarily associated with water and soil exposure. It is increasingly recognized in the developed world and may manifest as infection or colonization of multiple anatomic sites. Nontuberculous mycobacter...

  3. ASSESSING CAFFEINE AS AN EMERGING ENVIRONMENTAL CONCERN USING CONVENTIONAL APPROACHES

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Treated effluents from wastewater treatment plants are regulated by the US EPA as point-source discharges. There is recent evidence for the contribution of additional contaminants from these discharges in the form of pharmaceuticals and organic compounds. At some point, many of these emerging cont...

  4. Environmental Emergency Preparedness. Outdoor Living Skills Series. Instructor Manual.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Deaton, Don

    This instructor's manual contains 21 lesson plans to teach advanced skills to cope with emergency outdoor living situations and emphasizes being prepared, rather than survival. Written for the classroom teacher, but adaptable for other youth groups, the module contains subject information, lesson plans with activities, student handouts, a written…

  5. Responding to Public Health Emergencies on Tribal Lands: Jurisdictional Challenges and Practical Solutions.

    PubMed

    Barnard, Justin B

    2015-01-01

    Response to public health emergencies on tribal lands poses a unique challenge for state and tribal public health officials. The complexity and intensely situation-specific nature of federal Indian jurisprudence leaves considerable question as to which government entity, state or tribal, has jurisdiction on tribal lands to undertake basic emergency measures such as closure of public spaces, quarantine, compulsory medical examination, and investigation. That jurisdictional uncertainty, coupled with cultural differences and an often troubled history of tribal-state relations, threatens to significantly impede response to infectious disease outbreaks or other public health emergencies on tribal lands. Given that tribal communities may be disproportionately impacted by public health emergencies, it is critical that tribal, state, and local governments engage with each other in coordinated planning for public health threats. This Article is offered as a catalyst for such planning efforts. The Article identifies some of the most pressing jurisdictional issues that may confront governments responding to a public health emergency on tribal lands, with the aim of highlighting the nature of the problem and the need for action. The Article goes on to examine the most promising means of addressing jurisdictional uncertainty: intergovernmental agreements. Already utilized in many areas of shared interest between tribe and state, intergovernmental agreements offer neighboring state, local, and tribal governments a vehicle for delineating roles and authorities in an emergency, and may lay the groundwork for sharing resources. The Article surveys various representative tribal public health intergovernmental agreements, and concludes with suggestions for tribes and state or local governments looking to craft their own agreements. PMID:26333235

  6. Conceptual Challenges for Environmental Education: Advocacy, Autonomy, Implicit Education and Values

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schlottmann, Christopher

    2012-01-01

    "Conceptual Challenges for Environmental Education" is a critical analysis of environmental education from the perspective of educational ethics. It spells out elements of the conceptual foundations of an environmental education theory--among them implicit education, advocacy, Decade of Education for Sustainable Development, and climate…

  7. Responding to the Environmental Crisis: the Pedagogic Challenge.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Garb, Yaakov Jerome

    In this speech, the author describes what has been learned through years of experience teaching an introductory course in environmental issues at the University of California at Berkeley. The course is described as a broad interdisciplinary survey of the various environmental problems facing the earth; it is an examination of local and global…

  8. ENVIRONMENTAL SYSTEMS MANAGEMENT, SUSTAINABILITY THEORY, AND THE CHALLENGE OF UNCERTAINTY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Environmental Systems Management is the management of environmental problems at the systems level fully accounting fo rthe multi-dimensional nature of the environment. This includes socio-economic dimensions as well s the usual physical and life science aspects. This is important...

  9. Challenges and Opportunities for Evaluating Environmental Education Programs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carleton-Hug, Annelise; Hug, J. William

    2010-01-01

    Environmental education organizations can do more to either institute evaluation or improve the quality of their evaluation. In an effort to help evaluators bridge the gap between the potential for high quality evaluation systems to improve environmental education, and the low level of evaluation in actual practice, we reviewed recent…

  10. Concepts and Challenges for Environmentally Friendly En Route Operations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sridhar, Banavar

    2010-01-01

    Presented research on environmentally friendly en route traffic flow concepts incorporating models developed by basic climate research Developed an optimal contrail reduction trajectory concept. Integrated fuel flow, emissions and optimization models with FACET. Verified it against FAA emission models. Ability to conduct system level analysis of Traffic Flow Management concepts with minimal environmental impact.

  11. One world--one medicine--one health: emerging veterinary challenges and opportunities.

    PubMed

    Osburn, B; Scott, C; Gibbs, P

    2009-08-01

    The interdependence of humans, animals, and their environment has never been more important than now. The most prominent issues putting pressure on global health today include the dramatic emergence and spread of zoonotic diseases, contamination of food, water and soil, bioterrorist events, and degradation of resources and habitats. Current global health challenges have prompted a call for more holistic, collaborative, action-oriented approaches toward the goal of logical and practical solutions. Veterinarians have pivotal obligations, opportunities, and contributions to make in enhancing public health, recognising and responding to zoonotic disease transmission, maintaining food and water quality, and promoting wildlife and ecosystem health. PMID:20128454

  12. Pediatric Malignant Bone Tumors: A Review and Update on Current Challenges, and Emerging Drug Targets.

    PubMed

    Jackson, Twana M; Bittman, Mark; Granowetter, Linda

    2016-07-01

    Osteosarcoma (OS) and the Ewing sarcoma family of tumors (ESFT) are the most common malignant bone tumors in children and adolescents. While significant improvements in survival have been seen in other pediatric malignancies the treatment and prognosis for pediatric bone tumors has remained unchanged for the past 3 decades. This review and update of pediatric malignant bone tumors will provide a general overview of osteosarcoma and the Ewing sarcoma family of tumors, discuss bone tumor genomics, current challenges, and emerging drug targets. PMID:27265835

  13. ENVIRONMENTAL MASS SPECTROMETRY: EMERGING CONTAMINANTS AND CURRENT ISSUES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Much has been achieved in the way of environmental protection over the last 30 years. However, as we learn more, new concerns arise. This presentation will discuss chemical and microbial contaminants that the U.S. EPA and other agencies are currently concerned about. In this gr...

  14. EMERGING ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINANTS AND CURRENT ISSUES, MEETING IN SEATTLE, WA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Much has been achieved in the way of environmental protection over the last 30 years. However, as we learn more, new concerns arise. This presentation will discuss chemical and microbial contaminants that the U.S. EPA and other agencies are currently concerned about. In this gr...

  15. Emerging photovoltaic technologies: Environmental and health issues update

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fthenakis, Vasilis M.; Moskowitz, Paul D.

    1997-02-01

    New photovoltaic (PV) technologies promise low-cost, reliable PV modules and have the potential for significant PV penetration into the energy market. These prospects for commercialization have attracted renewed interest in the advantageous environmental impact of using PV and also in the potential environmental, health and safety (EHS) burdens in PV manufacturing and decommissioning. In this paper, we highlight recent studies on EHS issues: a) An integrated energy-environmental-economic analysis which shows that large-scale use of PV can significantly contribute to alleviating the greenhouse effect; in the United States alone, it could displace 450 million tons of carbon emissions by the year 2030, b) Recycling of the spent modules and scarp is economically feasible; current research centers on improving the efficiency and economics of recycling CdTe and CIS modules, c) Toxicological studies conducted by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) compared the acute toxicity of CdTe, CIS, and CGS; CdTe was the most toxic, and CGS the least toxic of the three. Additional studies are now comparing the systemic toxicity of these compounds with the toxicity of their precursors.

  16. Adsorption of Emerging Ionizable Contaminants on Carbon Nanotubes: Advancements and Challenges.

    PubMed

    Ma, Xingmao; Agarwal, Sarang

    2016-01-01

    The superior adsorption capacity of carbon nanotubes has been well recognized and there is a wealth of information in the literature concerning the adsorption of unionized organic pollutants on carbon nanotubes. Recently, the adsorption of emerging environmental pollutants, most of which are ionizable, has attracted increasing attention due to the heightened concerns about the accumulation of these emerging contaminants in the environment. These recent studies suggest that the adsorption of emerging ionizable contaminants on carbon nanotubes exhibit different characteristics than unionized ones. For example, a new charge-assisted intermolecular force has been proposed for ionizable compounds because some adsorption phenomenon cannot be easily explained by the conventional force theory. The adsorption of ionizable compounds also displayed much stronger dependence on solution pH and ionic strength than unionized compounds. This article aims to present a brief review on the current understanding of the adsorption of emerging ionizable contaminants to carbon nanotubes and discuss further research needs required to advance the mechanistic understanding of the interactions between ionizable contaminants and carbon nanotubes. PMID:27187338

  17. NASA Engineering Design Challenges: Environmental Control and Life Support Systems. Water Filtration Challenge. EG-2008-09-134-MSFC

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schneider, Twila, Ed.

    2010-01-01

    This educator guide is organized into seven chapters: (1) Overview; (2) The Design Challenge; (3) Connections to National Curriculum Standards; (4) Preparing to Teach; (5) Classroom Sessions; (6) Opportunities for Extension; and (7) Teacher Resources. Chapter 1 provides information about Environmental Control and Life Support Systems used on NASA…

  18. Mother-Child Referencing of Environmental Print and Its Relationship with Emergent Literacy Skills

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Neumann, Michelle M.; Hood, Michelle; Ford, Ruth

    2013-01-01

    Research Findings: Environmental print provides children with their earliest print experiences. This observational study investigated the frequency of mother-child environmental print referencing and its relationship with emergent literacy. A total of 35 mothers and their children (ages 3-4 years) were videotaped interacting in an environmental…

  19. Poverty and Environmental Degradation Challenges within the Global Economy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mabogunje, Akin L.

    2002-01-01

    Since the end of the second World War, the link between deepening poverty and environmental degradation has increased in visibility despite the efforts of the United Nations and other international agencies. Focuses on globalization, poverty, and the environment. (DDR)

  20. Management of disasters and complex emergencies in Africa: The challenges and constraints.

    PubMed

    Aliyu, Alhaji

    2015-01-01

    Natural and man-made catastrophes have caused significant destruction and loss of lives throughout human history. Disasters accompany a wide variety of events with multiple causes and consequences often leading to a cascade of related events. African continent has not been spared of these events. A new phenomenon in the continent is terrorism that is fuelled by globalization of arms trade and has contributed significantly to escalation of conflicts in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) resulting in complex emergencies and destruction of socioeconomic structures. The aim of this paper is to review relevant papers on management of disasters and complex emergencies in Africa and the challenges and constraints against the background of a weakened health system. Systematic search of published literature was conducted between 1990 and 2013. Grey literature (technical reports, government documents), published peer review journals, abstracts, relevant books and internet articles were reviewed. The review revealed that the frequency of both natural and man-made disasters in Africa is escalating. Complex emergencies are also on the increase since the Rwandan crisis in 1994. The impact of these events has overstretched and overwhelmed the health care system that is least prepared to handle and cope with the surge capacity and also render normal services. In conclusion, there is an urgent need for national emergency agencies/departments across Africa to develop a robust emergency preparedness and response plan. Every hospital most have a disaster management committee with flexible disaster management plan to respond to these catastrophes. There is a need for curriculum review in tertiary institutions across SSA to introduce and or expand training in disaster management. PMID:26021392

  1. Endocrine emergencies in critically ill patients: Challenges in diagnosis and management

    PubMed Central

    Bajwa, Sukhminder Jit Singh; Jindal, Ravi

    2012-01-01

    Endocrine emergencies pose unique challenges for the attending intensivist while managing critically ill patients. Besides taking care of primary disease state, one has to divert an equal attention to the possible associated endocrinopathies also. One of the common reasons for inability to timely diagnose an endocrinal failure in critically ill patients being the dominance of other severe systemic diseases and their clinical presentation. The timely diagnosis and administration of therapeutic interventions for these endocrine disorders can improve the outcome in critically ill patients. The timely diagnosis and administration of timely therapeutics in common endocrine disorders like severe thyroid disease, acute adrenal insufficiency and diabetic ketoacidosis significantly influence the outcome and prognosis. Careful evaluation of clinical history and a high degree of suspicion are the corner stone to diagnose such problems. Aggressive management of the patient is equally important as the complications are devastating and can prove highly fatal. The present article is an attempt to review some of the common endocrine emergencies in intensive care unit and the challenges associated with their diagnosis and management. PMID:23087855

  2. Emerging technologies and web accessibility: research challenges and opportunities focussing on vision issues.

    PubMed

    Harper, Simon; Yesilada, Yeliz

    2012-01-01

    This is a technological review paper focussed on identifying both the research challenges and opportunities for further investigation arising from emerging technologies, and it does not aim to propose any recommendation or standard. It is focussed on blind and partially sighted World Wide Web (Web) users along with others who use assistive technologies. The Web is a fast moving interdisciplinary domain in which new technologies, techniques and research is in perpetual development. It is often difficult to maintain a holistic view of new developments within the multiple domains which together make up the Web. This suggests that knowledge of the current developments and predictions of future developments are additionally important for the accessibility community. Web accessibility has previously been characterised by the correction of our past mistakes to make the current Web fulfil the original vision of access for all. New technologies were not designed with accessibility in mind and technologies that could be useful for addressing accessibility issues were not identified or adopted by the accessibility community. We wish to enable the research community to undertake preventative measures and proactively address challenges, while recognising opportunities, before they become unpreventable or require retrospective technological enhancement. This article then reviews emerging trends within the Web and Web Accessibility domains. PMID:21184625

  3. Environmental Risk and Protective Factors and Their Influence on the Emergence of Psychosis

    PubMed Central

    Schlosser, Danielle A.; Pearson, Rahel; Perez, Veronica B.; Loewy, Rachel L.

    2012-01-01

    Environmental risk and protective factors in schizophrenia play a significant role in the development and course of the disorder. The following article reviews the current state of evidence linking a variety of environmental factors and their impact on the emergence of psychotic disorders. The environmental factors include pre- and perinatal insults, stress and trauma, family environment, and cannabis use. The review of evidence is followed by case examples and clinical applications to facilitate the integration of the evidence into clinical practice. PMID:23125956

  4. Environmental Flow Modeling Challenges for Rapidly Urbanizing Watersheds

    EPA Science Inventory

    It is a challenge for land use planners and water resource managers to balance water needs that support urban growth and economic development of a growing population and yet maintain ecological flow needs. Urban growth and the associated water resources development in a watershed...

  5. Environmental sustainability in the intensive care unit: challenges and solutions.

    PubMed

    Huffling, Katie; Schenk, Elizabeth

    2014-01-01

    In acute care practice sites, the intensive care unit (ICU) is one of the most resource-intense environments. Replete with energy-intensive equipment, significant waste production, and multiple toxic chemicals, ICUs contribute to environmental harm and may inadvertently have a negative impact on the health of patients, staff, and visitors. This article evaluates the ICU on four areas of environmental sustainability: energy, waste, toxic chemicals, and healing environment and provides concrete actions ICU nurses can take to decrease environmental health risks in the ICU. Case studies of nurses making changes within their hospital practice are also highlighted, as well as resources for nurses starting to make changes at their health care institutions. PMID:24896556

  6. Symbolic diseases and "mindbody" co-emergence. A challenge for psychoneuroimmunology.

    PubMed

    Broom, Brian C; Booth, Roger J; Schubert, Christian

    2012-01-01

    Physical diseases that appear to be symbolic somatic representations of patients' personal meanings or individual 'stories' continue to be reported in the medical literature. The identification of a symbolic disease requires a clinical focus upon a patient's highly individual and nuanced meanings largely rendered invisible by the usual methodologies of clinical and research medicine, which has no coherent model for understanding symbolic disease. Therefore, a model is proposed of co-emergence of physicality and subjectivity, body and mind, disease and meaning, disease and symbol, which does provide a coherent basis for understanding symbolic disease. The 'mindbody' co-emergence model avoids mind and body dualism, assumes unbroken continuity between internal body processes and external interpersonal meanings and influences, and asserts that disease-related 'internal' bodily changes and collateral external interpersonal and environmental fluxes are mutually contingent and crucial to the development of the disease. The co-emergence model is discussed specifically in relation to psychoneuroimmunology, but it has exciting clinical and research implications for the whole of medicine. PMID:22225930

  7. Environmental Challenges: Radon and Carbon Dioxide in School Buildings.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Krueger, James

    1991-01-01

    Many school buildings with high radon levels also exhibit high carbon dioxide levels that starve the minds of students for oxygen. Administrators must realize that the world's best educator cannot teach minds made dysfunctional by their environment. This article describes Environmental Protection Agency testing results and offers radon monitoring…

  8. Environmental Toxicants and Developmental Disabilities: A Challenge for Psychologists

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Koger, Susan M.; Schettler, Ted; Weiss, Bernard

    2005-01-01

    Developmental, learning, and behavioral disabilities are a significant public health problem. Environmental chemicals can interfere with brain development during critical periods, thereby impacting sensory, motor, and cognitive function. Because regulation in the United States is based on limited testing protocols and essentially requires proof of…

  9. Residential Environmental Education Center Program Evaluation: An Ongoing Challenge

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bourke, Nicholas; Buskist, Connie; Herron, Julie

    2014-01-01

    Residential environmental education centers (REECs) have been criticized for their lack of quality program evaluation. However, the last national study done on the practices of REECs was Chenery and Hammerman's (1985) research. This article presents the results of a national survey of directors of REECs (n = 114) that gives insight into the…

  10. Challenges of Environmental Problems to the Philosophy of Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kato, Moricmichi

    2015-01-01

    We live in an age in which the destruction of the environment has become a major concern. However, until recently, environmental problems have not become a major issue for the philosophy of education. The reason for this is that for a very long time the philosophy of education was intimately related to the concept of nature as the foundation and…

  11. New Ethical Challenges within Environmental and Sustainability Education: A Response

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Todd, Sharon

    2016-01-01

    One of the major points to grow out of the four papers presented in this issue is how to think of education in relation to the various challenges facing the biosphere, facing the future of human and other than human life forms, and facing the sheer difficulties of planning what to do about them. The differences in the role of education, of course,…

  12. Emerging Environmental Justice Issues in Nuclear Power and Radioactive Contamination

    PubMed Central

    Kyne, Dean; Bolin, Bob

    2016-01-01

    Nuclear hazards, linked to both U.S. weapons programs and civilian nuclear power, pose substantial environment justice issues. Nuclear power plant (NPP) reactors produce low-level ionizing radiation, high level nuclear waste, and are subject to catastrophic contamination events. Justice concerns include plant locations and the large potentially exposed populations, as well as issues in siting, nuclear safety, and barriers to public participation. Other justice issues relate to extensive contamination in the U.S. nuclear weapons complex, and the mining and processing industries that have supported it. To approach the topic, first we discuss distributional justice issues of NPP sites in the U.S. and related procedural injustices in siting, operation, and emergency preparedness. Then we discuss justice concerns involving the U.S. nuclear weapons complex and the ways that uranium mining, processing, and weapons development have affected those living downwind, including a substantial American Indian population. Next we examine the problem of high-level nuclear waste and the risk implications of the lack of secure long-term storage. The handling and deposition of toxic nuclear wastes pose new transgenerational justice issues of unprecedented duration, in comparison to any other industry. Finally, we discuss the persistent risks of nuclear technologies and renewable energy alternatives. PMID:27420080

  13. Emerging Environmental Justice Issues in Nuclear Power and Radioactive Contamination.

    PubMed

    Kyne, Dean; Bolin, Bob

    2016-01-01

    Nuclear hazards, linked to both U.S. weapons programs and civilian nuclear power, pose substantial environment justice issues. Nuclear power plant (NPP) reactors produce low-level ionizing radiation, high level nuclear waste, and are subject to catastrophic contamination events. Justice concerns include plant locations and the large potentially exposed populations, as well as issues in siting, nuclear safety, and barriers to public participation. Other justice issues relate to extensive contamination in the U.S. nuclear weapons complex, and the mining and processing industries that have supported it. To approach the topic, first we discuss distributional justice issues of NPP sites in the U.S. and related procedural injustices in siting, operation, and emergency preparedness. Then we discuss justice concerns involving the U.S. nuclear weapons complex and the ways that uranium mining, processing, and weapons development have affected those living downwind, including a substantial American Indian population. Next we examine the problem of high-level nuclear waste and the risk implications of the lack of secure long-term storage. The handling and deposition of toxic nuclear wastes pose new transgenerational justice issues of unprecedented duration, in comparison to any other industry. Finally, we discuss the persistent risks of nuclear technologies and renewable energy alternatives. PMID:27420080

  14. Dealing with environmental challenges: mechanisms of adaptation in Trypanosoma cruzi

    PubMed Central

    Jimenez, Veronica

    2014-01-01

    Protozoan parasites have a significant impact upon global health, infecting millions of people around the world. With limited therapeutic options and no vaccines available, research efforts are focused upon unraveling cellular mechanisms essential for parasite survival. During its life cycle, Trypanosoma cruzi, the causal agent of Chagas disease, is exposed to multiple external conditions and different hosts. Environmental cues are linked to the differentiation process allowing the parasite to complete its life cycle. Successful transmission depends on the ability of the cells to trigger adaptive responses and cope with stressors while regulating proliferation and transition to different life stages. This review focuses upon different aspects of the stress response in T. cruzi, proposing new hypotheses regarding cross-talk and cross-tolerance with respect to environmental changes and discussing open questions and future directions. PMID:24508488

  15. Environmental Behavior and Gender: An Emerging Area of Concern for Environmental Education Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sakellari, Maria; Skanavis, Constantina

    2013-01-01

    Ecofeminism suggests that women are more active than men regarding environmental issues for a variety of social, cultural, and biological reasons. In support to these arguments, women predominate within the overall grassroots of the Environmental Justice movement. However, claims have been made that environmental education theory and research are…

  16. DECOMMISSIONING CHALLENGES AT THE ROCKY FLATS ENVIRONMENTAL TECHNOLOGY SITE

    SciTech Connect

    Dorr, K. A.; Hoover, J.

    2002-02-25

    This paper presents a discussion of the demolition of the Building 788 cluster at the Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site (RFETS) in Golden, Colorado. The Building 788 Cluster was a Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) permitted storage facilities and ancillary structures. Topics covered include the methods employed for Project Planning, Regulatory Compliance, Waste Management, Hazard Identification, Radiological Controls, Risk Management, Field Implementation, and Cost Schedule control, and Lessons Learned and Project Closeout.

  17. Innovative multidisciplinary research in environmental epidemiology: the challenges and needs.

    PubMed

    Vena, J E; Weiner, J M

    1999-01-01

    The ability of epidemiology to determine the relationships between health and environmental insults has become exceedingly difficult. The multifactorial nature of disease and the diversity of the insults, which include biologic, physical, social and cultural factors, combined with genetic susceptibility, suggest the need to develop better models of multidisciplinary epidemiologic investigation. This paper highlights the needs of an environmental epidemiologic team, discusses ways to incorporate new ideas across disciplines and to integrate constructs and paradigms of social, ecological, cultural and population determinants with individual-based exposure assessments. Innovation will be the key to the survival and increasing importance of epidemiology in addressing the public health needs of the future, but what are the ways to enhance and encourage creativity in environmental epidemiology? The process of self-renewal and continuing education will be highlighted. Additionally, the complexity of the problems and the need for clear supervision and control of multidisciplinary research efforts require a forum of communication and an 'information-processing approach' beyond those in traditional epidemiologic studies. New approaches in data management and medical informatics must be incorporated into the epidemiologic investigative framework. Methods to be included should focus on opportunities for computer-supported sharing of ideas. Such capabilities minimise the geographic distances and the disparate knowledge and training of the investigators and bring the team closer to the objectives and functions inherent in multidisciplinary investigation. PMID:10703183

  18. Emerging nutrition challenges: policies to tackle under-nutrition, obesity and chronic diseases.

    PubMed

    Coitinho, Denise Costa; Rivera, Juan A; Uauy, Ricardo; Ding, Zong-Yi; Ruel, Marie T; Svensson, Per-Gunnar

    2008-01-01

    On 19 May, 2008, Mexico's Secretary of Health, Dr José Angel Córdova Villalobos, hosted an event entitled Emerging Nutrition Challenges: Policies to Tackle Under-nutrition, Obesity and Chronic Diseases. Held in conjunction with the World Health Assembly (WHA) in Geneva, nearly 100 delegates from over 30 countries attended. The International Association of Infant Food Manufacturers and the International Hospital Federation supported Mexico in its sponsorship of this event. Dr Villalobos provided opening remarks including an overview of Mexico's public policies to prevent obesity and chronic diseases. Dr. Mauricio Hernández, Mexico's Undersecretary of Health, moderated as six experts from around the world spoke on issues relating to the nutrition "double burden" (i.e. malnourishment and obesity), successful interventions and policy opportunities for improving nutrition, preventing obesity and enhancing health outcomes. Following are abstracts from their presentations. PMID:19181025

  19. An unusual cause of rhabdomyolysis in emergency setting: challenges of diagnosis.

    PubMed

    Petrov, Mikhail; Yatsynovich, Yan; Lionte, Catalina

    2015-01-01

    Rhabdomyolysis is a rare phenomenon that may be challenging to recognize in an emergency setting. Drugs are one of the common causes. Trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole is a commonly used antibiotic effective in the treatment of upper and lower respiratory tract infections as well as renal, urinary, and gastrointestinal tract infections. It has variable side effects, ranging from mild symptoms of fatigue and insomnia to a potentially life-threatening Steven-Johnson syndrome and renal failure. Rhabdomyolysis is a rare complication of therapy with this drug and is commonly seen in immunocompromised patients or those with an allogenic stem cell transplant. In this article, we report a case of rhabdomyolysis in an immunocompetent patient who has undergone treatment with trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole and a possible drug interaction with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, with the latter acting as an aggravating factor of this complication. PMID:24997105

  20. ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES IN THE 21ST CENTURY: PARADIGMS, OPPORTUNITIES, AND CHALLENGES

    EPA Science Inventory

    In: Environmental Sciences in the 21st Century: Paradigms, Opportunities, and Challenges: Abstract Book: SETAC 21st Annual Meeting, 12-16 November 2000, Nashville, TN.. Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, Pensacola, FL. Pp. p. 180.

    Bioavailability and rates...

  1. The environmental source of emerging Apophysomyces variabilis infection in India.

    PubMed

    Prakash, Hariprasath; Ghosh, Anup Kumar; Rudramurthy, Shivaprakash Mandya; Paul, Raees Ahmad; Gupta, Sunita; Negi, Vishwanand; Chakrabarti, Arunaloke

    2016-08-01

    The rare mucoraceous fungus, Apophysomyces species complex ranks second after Rhizopus arrhizus causing mucormycosis in India. The source of this agent in the environment is not clearly known. We conducted an environmental study to find its presence in Indian soil. The soil samples from different geographical locations were analyzed for isolation of Mucorales. Rhizopus arrhizus (24.6%) was most commonly isolated from soil, followed by Lichtheimia spp. (23.2%), Cunninghamella spp. (21.7%), Rhizopus microsporus (14%) and Apophysomyces spp. (4.5%). The isolation of Apophysomyces species complex was significantly associated with low nitrogen content of the soil. Based on sequencing of internal transcribed spacer (ITS) and 28S (D1/D2) regions of ribosomal DNA, the Apophysomyces isolates were identified as Apophysomyces variabilis with 98 to 100% similarity to type strain A. variabilis (CBS658.93). The analysis of amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) fingerprinting data demonstrated genomic diversity of A. variabilis isolates with multiple clades (similarity 40-90%). The minimum inhibitory concentrations (MIC), MIC50 and MIC90 for A. variabilis isolates were 1 and 4 μg/ml for amphotericin B, 0.25 and 0.5 μg/ml for itraconazole, 0.125 and 0.25 μg/ml for posaconazole, 0.06 and 0.12 μg/ml for terbinafine, respectively. The present study revealed abundant presence of A. variabilis in Indian soil with low nitrogen content, its genetic heterogeneity and relatively high MICs for amphotericin B. PMID:27118802

  2. Biological and environmental interactions of emerging two-dimensional nanomaterials.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhongying; Zhu, Wenpeng; Qiu, Yang; Yi, Xin; von dem Bussche, Annette; Kane, Agnes; Gao, Huajian; Koski, Kristie; Hurt, Robert

    2016-03-21

    Two-dimensional materials have become a major focus in materials chemistry research worldwide with substantial efforts centered on synthesis, property characterization, and technological application. These high-aspect ratio sheet-like solids come in a wide array of chemical compositions, crystal phases, and physical forms, and are anticipated to enable a host of future technologies in areas that include electronics, sensors, coatings, barriers, energy storage and conversion, and biomedicine. A parallel effort has begun to understand the biological and environmental interactions of synthetic nanosheets, both to enable the biomedical developments and to ensure human health and safety for all application fields. This review covers the most recent literature on the biological responses to 2D materials and also draws from older literature on natural lamellar minerals to provide additional insight into the essential chemical behaviors. The article proposes a framework for more systematic investigation of biological behavior in the future, rooted in fundamental materials chemistry and physics. That framework considers three fundamental interaction modes: (i) chemical interactions and phase transformations, (ii) electronic and surface redox interactions, and (iii) physical and mechanical interactions that are unique to near-atomically-thin, high-aspect-ratio solids. Two-dimensional materials are shown to exhibit a wide range of behaviors, which reflect the diversity in their chemical compositions, and many are expected to undergo reactive dissolution processes that will be key to understanding their behaviors and interpreting biological response data. The review concludes with a series of recommendations for high-priority research subtopics at the "bio-nanosheet" interface that we hope will enable safe and successful development of technologies related to two-dimensional nanomaterials. PMID:26923057

  3. The environmental challenges in Sub-Saharan Africa.

    PubMed

    Mabogunje, A L

    1995-05-01

    Countries in sub-Saharan Africa are doing some rethinking, after decades of development that have resulted in continued poverty, international indebtedness, environmental degradation, and inappropriate Western models. Technological innovations, institutional developments, and family planning are key inputs. Development should shift to a focus on elimination of widespread poverty. Past development strategies in an African context of ample resources have harmed the environment without improving the average person's standard of living. Knowledge about Africa's environment and environmental degradation is inadequate. Recent studies have found, contrary to popular belief, that small shareholders made considerable investments in resource-based capital, which protected their farms from major environmental deterioration and negative impacts of intensification. In Nigeria field studies found that rising demand for fuelwood did not lead to greater deforestation or desertification. Severe degradation has occurred in places where density of population is greater than 500 persons per sq. km, where the land is physically or biologically vulnerable, and where socioeconomic conditions interfere with application of conservation measures. Reduced well-being and reduced food capacity is attributed to land tenure arrangements, misguided macroeconomic policies, and inadequate infrastructure. The issues of development, environment, and population are complex. Sustainable development is possible with appropriate investment priorities that will provide needed infrastructure, services, and education. Urban areas need safe water, solid waste disposal, and spatial planning to relieve congested spaces. Rural areas should focus on health education and basic sanitation. Regulatory measures and conservation measures are also important. Institutional development that promotes democracy, expands individual property rights, and increases the knowledge base offers the most hope for alleviating

  4. Disease emergence in birds: challenges for the twenty-first century

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Friend, M.; McLean, R.G.; Dein, F.J.

    2001-01-01

    (Guralnik 1982); that is, dysfunction contributing to physiological, physical, reproductive, behavioral, or other impairment that reduces the probability of survival of individuals. If enough individuals are affected, the collective effects can reduce the sustainability of the population. Although disease can result from exposure to a wide variety of physical, chemical, and biological agents and other conditions, we focus this paper on microbes and parasites and to overt mortality caused by them. Thus, disease effects presented only represent the proverbial a??tip of the iceberga?? relative to the challenges wild avifauna face from disease. Our perspective of disease emergence expands the earlier definitions of emerging diseases by others (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 1994, Morse 1995) to include all species. Our comments are defined by the context of disease occurrences that have increased within the past three decades, or threaten to increase in the near future relative to populations affected, geographic distribution, or magnitude of effects.

  5. Challenges of Transferring Burn Victims to Hospitals: Experiences of Emergency Medical Services Personnel.

    PubMed

    Khankeh, Hamid Reza; Froutan, Razieh; Fallahi-Khoshknab, Masoud; Ahmadi, Fazlollah; Norouzi, Kian

    2016-01-01

    A thorough understanding of experiences of Emergency Medical Services (EMS) personnel related to the field transfer of burn victims can be used as a prerequisite of quality improvement of pre-hospital clinical care for these kinds of victims. The aim of the present study was to explore the experiences of EMS personnel during transferring burn victims. In this qualitative research, content analysis was performed to explore the experiences and perceptions of a purposeful sample of Iranian EMS personnel (n = 32). Data collection continued until a point of saturation was reached. Data was collected using in-depth semi-structured interview and field observations and analyzed by qualitative inductive content analysis.After data analyzing from experiences of pre-hospital emergency personnel during transferring burn victims 7 subcategories were developed and classified into three main categories as challenges of transferring burn victim including; risks during patient transfer, restrictions in the admission of burn victims and uncertainties about patient referral. This study showed that different factors affect the quality of pre-hospital clinical services to the field transfer of burn victims that should be considered to improve the quality of pre-hospital clinical care of burn victims in dynamic programs. Further investigation is needed to explore the process of these crucial services. PMID:27241432

  6. The Boston Marathon Bombings Mass Casualty Incident: One Emergency Department's Information Systems Challenges and Opportunities.

    PubMed

    Landman, Adam; Teich, Jonathan M; Pruitt, Peter; Moore, Samantha E; Theriault, Jennifer; Dorisca, Elizabeth; Harris, Sheila; Crim, Heidi; Lurie, Nicole; Goralnick, Eric

    2015-07-01

    Emergency department (ED) information systems are designed to support efficient and safe emergency care. These same systems often play a critical role in disasters to facilitate real-time situation awareness, information management, and communication. In this article, we describe one ED's experiences with ED information systems during the April 2013 Boston Marathon bombings. During postevent debriefings, staff shared that our ED information systems and workflow did not optimally support this incident; we found challenges with our unidentified patient naming convention, real-time situational awareness of patient location, and documentation of assessments, orders, and procedures. As a result, before our next mass gathering event, we changed our unidentified patient naming convention to more clearly distinguish multiple, simultaneous, unidentified patients. We also made changes to the disaster registration workflow and enhanced roles and responsibilities for updating electronic systems. Health systems should conduct disaster drills using their ED information systems to identify inefficiencies before an actual incident. ED information systems may require enhancements to better support disasters. Newer technologies, such as radiofrequency identification, could further improve disaster information management and communication but require careful evaluation and implementation into daily ED workflow. PMID:24997562

  7. Emergency medicine in Ukraine: challenges in the post-Soviet era.

    PubMed

    Wright, S W; Stack, L B; McMurray, B R; Bolyukh, S

    2000-11-01

    The practice of emergency medicine in Ukraine is markedly different from the practice in North America. The emergency physician counterpart in Ukraine attends 6 years of medical school then 18 months of prehospital physician training at an EMS base station. Once trained, prehospital physicians work 160 hours/month in 24-hour shifts at the base station as part of a physician-nurse team which answers ambulance requests. Most patients are seen and treated on site of the ambulance call. Patients are transported to the hospital only 20% of the time. Prehospital physicians can expect to earn $35 to $65 per month. Nearly all prehospital physicians are government employees. Since becoming an independent democratic republic, Ukraine's turbulent economy has negatively affected health care. Deaths from infectious diseases, including vaccine-preventable illnesses are 10-fold to that of Western countries. A 90% income tax discourages the private practice of medicine. Medical care is provided free of charge, however, if a patient wants a higher standard of care, they may have to pay an attending physician up to $200. Most medications used to treat emergencies are free, but if thrombolytics are required, the patient will have to pay for them before they are administered. Budgetary constraints limit equipment and technology. The disparity between urban and rural resources is striking as even the most basic equipment is antiquated and in need of repair. Despite the economic challenges facing Ukranian physicians, they are enthusiastic about the care and services they provide. EMS is well organized and offers services not seen in the United States. Prehospital physicians in Ukraine are viewed as an integral part of the health care system by their hospital-based colleagues. PMID:11103739

  8. Addressing Global Environmental Challenges through Interdisciplinary Biogeochemical Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paytan, A.

    2013-12-01

    Our planet is dynamic; energy and matter constantly move between the hydrosphere, atmosphere and lithosphere on time scales from seconds to millenia. These tight interactions - including those between organisms and their physical environment - are what make Earth habitable. However, as Rachel Carson wrote, 'Only within the moment of time represented by the present century has one species - man - acquired significant power to alter the nature of this world'. Globalization and explosive population growth have generated far-reaching environmental problems on a scale that humanity has never faced before. Fortunately, our species has also developed an unprecedented ability to provide science-based solutions. Since processes impacting the environment involve complex biological, physical, chemical and geological interactions and feedbacks, they require the integration of expertise from all these scientific disciplines as well as input from policy makers, social scientists, and economists. This talk presents four examples of current interdisciplinary research projects conducted in my lab, each one related to a theme from one of Carson's books (Under the Sea-wind, The Sea Around Us, The Edge of the Sea, and Silent Spring). These projects, and others like them, provide hope that we can move toward a sustainable relationship with the natural world by encouraging the best scientists to conduct interdisciplinary research with direct applications for environmental management and stewardship.

  9. The "Environmental" Challenges: Impact of Radiation on Machine Components

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brugger, M.; Cerutti, F.; Esposito, L. S.

    The High Luminosity LHC upgrade poses demanding requirements in terms of energy deposition, in particular around the high luminosity experiments where the Inner Triplet elements and the separation dipole will be exposed to unprecedented levels of radiation, challenging their reliability and lifetime. Dedicated Monte Carlo studies have been conducted in order to characterize the debris-machine interaction and define a suitable shielding. Moreover, also the areas adjacent to the LHC tunnel, where the installation of electronics equipment is envisaged, will be significantly impacted. In this context, cumulative damage (Total Ionizing Dose and/or Non-Ionizing Energy Loss) and stochastic effects have to be taken into account in an appropriate Radiation Hardness Assurance strategy, including the specification of the radiation environment, required test and qualification procedures, and corresponding radiation monitoring.

  10. Fertility preservation in female cancer patients: an emerging challenge for physicians.

    PubMed

    Caserta, D; Ralli, E; Matteucci, E; Marci, R; Moscarini, M

    2014-03-01

    Fertility preservation has become an issue of great importance in female cancer patients due to increasing survival rates and delayed childbearing. It is an emerging challenge for physicians, cause of several related issues (multidisciplinary approach, doctor-patient communication, ethical, religious and legal problems) and many unresolved questions. This review aims to update the latest literature data, summarizing the effects of cancer treatments on female fertility and the various options currently available to offer cancer patients the opportunity of future pregnancies. Many strategies exist for fertility preservation in young women and they should be assessed according to the patient's age, type of cancer, partner status and time available. Some techniques are well established, others are still experimental. The established methods include embryo cryopreservation, transposition of ovaries prior to radiation therapy, radiation shielding of gonads and conservative surgical approaches. The experimental methods include oocyte cryopreservation, in vitro maturation of oocytes, ovarian tissue cryopreservation and transplantation, and ovarian suppression. Improvement of these techniques as well as better characterization of their success rates and risks, await further investigation. Oocytes donation and gestational surrogacy represent the last options. Thus, the care of these patients is challenging, complex and requires a multidisciplinary approach. A close collaboration between Oncologists, Specialists in Reproductive Medicine, Gynecologic Oncologists and Endocrinologists is crucial for always offering the best possible option. PMID:24637474

  11. Linking environmental nutrient enrichment and disease emergence in humans and wildlife

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Pieter T. J.; Townsend, Alan R.; Cleveland, Cory C.; Glibert, Patricia M.; Howarth, Robert W.; McKenzie, Valerie J.; Rejmankova, Eliska; Ward, Mary H.

    2009-01-01

    Worldwide increases in the numbers of human and wildlife diseases present ecologists with the challenge of understanding how large-scale environmental changes affect host-parasite interactions. One of the most profound changes to Earth’s ecosystems is the alteration of global nutrient cycles, including those of phosphorus (P) and especially nitrogen (N). Alongside the obvious direct benefits of nutrient application for food production, growing evidence suggests that anthropogenic inputs of N and P can indirectly affect the abundance of infectious and noninfectious pathogens, sometimes leading to epidemic conditions. However, the mechanisms underpinning observed correlations, and how such patterns vary with disease type, have long remained conjectural. Here, we discuss recent experimental advances in this area to critically evaluate the relationship between environmental nutrient enrichment and disease. Given the inter-related nature of human and wildlife disease emergence, we include a broad range of human and wildlife examples from terrestrial, marine and freshwater ecosystems. We examine the consequences of nutrient pollution on directly transmitted, vector-borne, complex life cycle, and noninfectious pathogens, including West Nile virus, malaria, harmful algal blooms, coral reef diseases and amphibian malformations. Our synthetic examination suggests that the effects of environmental nutrient enrichment on disease are complex and multifaceted, varying with the type of pathogen, host species and condition, attributes of the ecosystem and the degree of enrichment; some pathogens increase in abundance whereas others decline or disappear. Nevertheless, available evidence indicates that ecological changes associated with nutrient enrichment often exacerbate infection and disease caused by generalist parasites with direct or simple life cycles. Observed mechanisms include changes in host/vector density, host distribution, infection resistance, pathogen virulence or

  12. Emerging conservation challenges and prospects in an era of offshore hydrocarbon exploration and exploitation.

    PubMed

    Kark, Salit; Brokovich, Eran; Mazor, Tessa; Levin, Noam

    2015-12-01

    Globally, extensive marine areas important for biodiversity conservation and ecosystem functioning are undergoing exploration and extraction of oil and natural gas resources. Such operations are expanding to previously inaccessible deep waters and other frontier regions, while conservation-related legislation and planning is often lacking. Conservation challenges arising from offshore hydrocarbon development are wide-ranging. These challenges include threats to ecosystems and marine species from oil spills, negative impacts on native biodiversity from invasive species colonizing drilling infrastructure, and increased political conflicts that can delay conservation actions. With mounting offshore operations, conservationists need to urgently consider some possible opportunities that could be leveraged for conservation. Leveraging options, as part of multi-billion dollar marine hydrocarbon operations, include the use of facilities and costly equipment of the deep and ultra-deep hydrocarbon industry for deep-sea conservation research and monitoring and establishing new conservation research, practice, and monitoring funds and environmental offsetting schemes. The conservation community, including conservation scientists, should become more involved in the earliest planning and exploration phases and remain involved throughout the operations so as to influence decision making and promote continuous monitoring of biodiversity and ecosystems. A prompt response by conservation professionals to offshore oil and gas developments can mitigate impacts of future decisions and actions of the industry and governments. New environmental decision support tools can be used to explicitly incorporate the impacts of hydrocarbon operations on biodiversity into marine spatial and conservation plans and thus allow for optimum trade-offs among multiple objectives, costs, and risks. PMID:26219342

  13. 1990 UPDATE OF THE US ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY'S SITE EMERGING TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act of 1986 (SARA) directed the U.S. Environmental Protection AGency (EPA) to establish an Alternative/Innovative Treatment Technology Research and Demonstration Program. The EPA's Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response and the ...

  14. Mother-Child Joint Writing in an Environmental Print Setting: Relations with Emergent Literacy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Neumann, Michelle M.; Hood, Michelle; Ford, Ruth M.

    2012-01-01

    Mother-child dyads (N = 35) were videoed as they wrote a shopping list in an environmental print-rich grocery shop play setting. The children (M age = 4.3 years) were assessed on emergent literacy skills (letter name and sound knowledge, print concepts, phonological awareness, and letter and name writing). Mothers' general level of print and…

  15. THE U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY'S SITE EMERGING TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM

    EPA Science Inventory

    Under the SITE Emerging Technology Program, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is seeking to foster the further development of technol- ogies that have been successfully tested at bench-scale and are now ready for pilot-scale testing, prior to field- or full-scale demonstra...

  16. What Influences the Emergence of a New Subject in Schools? The Case of Environmental Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yueh, Mei-Chun Michelle; Cowie, Bronwen; Barker, Miles; Jones, Alister

    2010-01-01

    New subjects are always emerging but only some gain a place in the formal school curriculum. In fact, most of the now accepted conventional school subjects have, at some stage, struggled to become established. This paper presents findings of a three-year study of teacher and school responses to the introduction of environmental education (EE) as a…

  17. Emerging Environmental Contaminants and Soled Phase Microextraction: Janusz Pawliszyn's Legacy in the Environmental Arena

    EPA Science Inventory

    Solid phase microextraction (SPME) has revolutionized the way samples are extracted, enabling rapid, automated, and solventless extraction of many different sample types, including air, water, soil, and biological samples. As such, SPME is widely used for environmental, food, fo...

  18. Advancing Data Assimilation in Operational Hydrologic Forecasting: Progresses, Challenges, and Emerging Opportunities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liu, Yuqiong; Weerts, A.; Clark, M.; Hendricks Franssen, H.-J; Kumar, S.; Moradkhani, H.; Seo, D.-J.; Schwanenberg, D.; Smith, P.; van Dijk, A. I. J. M.; van Velzen, N.; He, M.; Lee, H.; Noh, S. J.; Rakovec, O.; Restrepo, P.

    2012-01-01

    Data assimilation (DA) holds considerable potential for improving hydrologic predictions as demonstrated in numerous research studies. However, advances in hydrologic DA research have not been adequately or timely implemented in operational forecast systems to improve the skill of forecasts for better informed real-world decision making. This is due in part to a lack of mechanisms to properly quantify the uncertainty in observations and forecast models in real-time forecasting situations and to conduct the merging of data and models in a way that is adequately efficient and transparent to operational forecasters. The need for effective DA of useful hydrologic data into the forecast process has become increasingly recognized in recent years. This motivated a hydrologic DA workshop in Delft, the Netherlands in November 2010, which focused on advancing DA in operational hydrologic forecasting and water resources management. As an outcome of the workshop, this paper reviews, in relevant detail, the current status of DA applications in both hydrologic research and operational practices, and discusses the existing or potential hurdles and challenges in transitioning hydrologic DA research into cost-effective operational forecasting tools, as well as the potential pathways and newly emerging opportunities for overcoming these challenges. Several related aspects are discussed, including (1) theoretical or mathematical aspects in DA algorithms, (2) the estimation of different types of uncertainty, (3) new observations and their objective use in hydrologic DA, (4) the use of DA for real-time control of water resources systems, and (5) the development of community-based, generic DA tools for hydrologic applications. It is recommended that cost-effective transition of hydrologic DA from research to operations should be helped by developing community-based, generic modeling and DA tools or frameworks, and through fostering collaborative efforts among hydrologic modellers, DA

  19. Advancing data assimilation in operational hydrologic forecasting: progresses, challenges, and emerging opportunities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Y.; Weerts, A. H.; Clark, M.; Hendricks Franssen, H.-J.; Kumar, S.; Moradkhani, H.; Seo, D.-J.; Schwanenberg, D.; Smith, P.; van Dijk, A. I. J. M.; van Velzen, N.; He, M.; Lee, H.; Noh, S. J.; Rakovec, O.; Restrepo, P.

    2012-03-01

    Data assimilation (DA) holds considerable potential for improving hydrologic predictions as demonstrated in numerous research studies. However, advances in hydrologic DA research have not been adequately or timely implemented into operational forecast systems to improve the skill of forecasts to better inform real-world decision making. This is due in part to a lack of mechanisms to properly quantify the uncertainty in observations and forecast models in real-time forecasting situations and to conduct the merging of data and models in a way that is adequately efficient and transparent to operational forecasters. The need for effective DA of useful hydrologic data into the forecast process has become increasingly recognized in recent years. This motivated a hydrologic DA workshop in Delft, The Netherlands in November 2010, which focused on advancing DA in operational hydrologic forecasting and water resources management. As an outcome of the workshop, this paper reviews, in relevant detail, the current status of DA applications in both hydrologic research and operational practices, and discusses the existing or potential hurdles and challenges in transitioning hydrologic DA research into cost-effective operational forecasting tools, as well as the potential pathways and newly emerging opportunities for overcoming these challenges. Several related aspects are discussed, including (1) theoretical or mathematical considerations in DA algorithms, (2) the estimation of different types of uncertainty, (3) new observations and their objective use in hydrologic DA, (4) the use of DA for real-time control of water resources systems, and (5) the development of community-based, generic DA tools for hydrologic applications. It is recommended that cost-effective transition of hydrologic DA from research to operations should be helped by developing community-based, generic modelling and DA tools or frameworks, and through fostering collaborative efforts among hydrologic modellers

  20. Advancing data assimilation in operational hydrologic forecasting: progresses, challenges, and emerging opportunities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Y.; Weerts, A. H.; Clark, M.; Hendricks Franssen, H.-J.; Kumar, S.; Moradkhani, H.; Seo, D.-J.; Schwanenberg, D.; Smith, P.; van Dijk, A. I. J. M.; van Velzen, N.; He, M.; Lee, H.; Noh, S. J.; Rakovec, O.; Restrepo, P.

    2012-10-01

    Data assimilation (DA) holds considerable potential for improving hydrologic predictions as demonstrated in numerous research studies. However, advances in hydrologic DA research have not been adequately or timely implemented in operational forecast systems to improve the skill of forecasts for better informed real-world decision making. This is due in part to a lack of mechanisms to properly quantify the uncertainty in observations and forecast models in real-time forecasting situations and to conduct the merging of data and models in a way that is adequately efficient and transparent to operational forecasters. The need for effective DA of useful hydrologic data into the forecast process has become increasingly recognized in recent years. This motivated a hydrologic DA workshop in Delft, the Netherlands in November 2010, which focused on advancing DA in operational hydrologic forecasting and water resources management. As an outcome of the workshop, this paper reviews, in relevant detail, the current status of DA applications in both hydrologic research and operational practices, and discusses the existing or potential hurdles and challenges in transitioning hydrologic DA research into cost-effective operational forecasting tools, as well as the potential pathways and newly emerging opportunities for overcoming these challenges. Several related aspects are discussed, including (1) theoretical or mathematical aspects in DA algorithms, (2) the estimation of different types of uncertainty, (3) new observations and their objective use in hydrologic DA, (4) the use of DA for real-time control of water resources systems, and (5) the development of community-based, generic DA tools for hydrologic applications. It is recommended that cost-effective transition of hydrologic DA from research to operations should be helped by developing community-based, generic modeling and DA tools or frameworks, and through fostering collaborative efforts among hydrologic modellers, DA

  1. Environmental emergencies.

    PubMed

    Braun, R; Krishel, S

    1997-05-01

    This article reviews the pearls and pitfalls of high-altitude sickness, decompression sickness, and barotrauma; new findings relevant to the near-drowning patient; continued controversies on hyperbaric oxygen for carbon monoxide poisoning; pitfalls in hypothermia management; and updates on the management of venomous snakebites. PMID:9183284

  2. Integrating Environmental and Human Health Databases in the Great Lakes Basin: Themes, Challenges and Future Directions

    PubMed Central

    Bassil, Kate L.; Sanborn, Margaret; Lopez, Russ; Orris, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Many government, academic and research institutions collect environmental data that are relevant to understanding the relationship between environmental exposures and human health. Integrating these data with health outcome data presents new challenges that are important to consider to improve our effective use of environmental health information. Our objective was to identify the common themes related to the integration of environmental and health data, and suggest ways to address the challenges and make progress toward more effective use of data already collected, to further our understanding of environmental health associations in the Great Lakes region. Environmental and human health databases were identified and reviewed using literature searches and a series of one-on-one and group expert consultations. Databases identified were predominantly environmental stressors databases, with fewer found for health outcomes and human exposure. Nine themes or factors that impact integration were identified: data availability, accessibility, harmonization, stakeholder collaboration, policy and strategic alignment, resource adequacy, environmental health indicators, and data exchange networks. The use and cost effectiveness of data currently collected could be improved by strategic changes to data collection and access systems to provide better opportunities to identify and study environmental exposures that may impact human health. PMID:25837202

  3. CHALLENGES AND BENEFITS OF CONDUCTING ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE RESEARCH IN A SCHOOL SETTING

    PubMed Central

    GUIDRY, VIRGINIA T.; LOWMAN, AMY; HALL, DEVON; BARON, DOTHULA; WING, STEVE

    2015-01-01

    Environmental justice (EJ) research requires attention to consequences for research participants beyond those typically considered by institutional review boards. The imbalance of power between impacted communities and those who create and regulate pollution creates challenges for participation, yet research can also benefit those involved. Our community-academic partnership designed the Rural Air Pollutants and Children's Health (RAPCH) study to provide positive impacts while measuring health effects at three low-resource public middle schools near concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) in North Carolina. We evaluated perceived benefits and challenges of study involvement by interviewing school staff and community liaisons who facilitated data collection. Reported benefits included enhancement of students’ academic environment and increased community environmental awareness; challenges were associated mainly with some participants’ immaturity. Leadership from a strong community-based organization was crucial to recruitment, yet our approach entailed minimal focus on EJ, which may have limited opportunities for community education or organizing for environmental health. PMID:25085828

  4. A Foucauldian Analysis of Environmental Education: Toward the Socioecological Challenge of the Earth Charter

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gruenewald, David A.

    2004-01-01

    This article examines recent trends in environmental education (EE) and argues that its institutionalization within general education works against its own socially and ecologically transformative goals. EE emerged as a cultural response to international awareness that human beings were negatively impacting their environments and causing…

  5. Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response Environmental Justice Task Force draft final report executive summary

    SciTech Connect

    1994-12-31

    Over the last decade, concern about the impact of environmental pollution on particular population groups has been growing. There is a widespread belief that low-income and/or minority groups may bear disproportionate high and adverse human health and environmental effects from pollution. This belief has resulted in a movement to assure environmental justice for all populations. Early in her tenure as the US Environmental Protection Agency`s Administrator, Carol Browner designated the pursuit of environmental justice as one of the Agency`s top priorities. In response to concerns voiced by many groups outside the Agency, the Assistant Administrator of the Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response (OSWER), Elliott P. Laws, on November 29, 1993, directed the formation of a task force to analyze environmental justice issues specific to waste programs and develop recommendations to address these issues. President Clinton signed an Executive Order on Environmental Justice (February 11, 1994) (Executive Order) which focused the attention of all Federal agencies on environmental justice issues. EPA is currently developing an Agency-wide strategy pursuant to the Executive Order. The requirements of the Executive Order proved extra emphasis to the mission of the OSWER task force.

  6. Emerging research in micro and nano systems: opportunities and challenges for societal impact

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gianchandani, Yogesh B.

    2010-02-01

    In just a few decades, micro and nano technologies have changed the way that we live - how we work and communicate; the food and medicine that we consume; the clothing that we use; and the entertainment that we seek. While these technologies are being actively investigated in several research communities, the potential for continued societal impact is constrained by resources available for system-level research. Given the long time-lines and levels of investment that are typically necessary to develop functional systems, strategic prioritization of research directions from the perspective of societal needs can be helpful. This paper outlines the findings of an NSF-sponsored road-mapping workshop that was held in 2009, with the intention of initiating a conversation about the opportunities and challenges for micro and nano systems. Four areas of need were discussed: environmental sensing; health care; infrastructure monitoring; and energy alternatives. Possible research trajectories were identified by envisioning technological goals for the year 2040, and linking these to horizons for 2015 and 2025. This paper also provides few examples of current research in each of the four application domains. It is noted that a systems perspective can help to keep the research focused, accelerating and amplifying the societal gain with available resources. Practical and affordable solutions at the system level will require partnerships between specialists, and also between academia and industry.

  7. Emergency management in health: key issues and challenges in the UK

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Emergency planning in the UK has grown considerably in recent years, galvanised by the threat of terrorism. However, deficiencies in NHS emergency planning were identified and the evidence-base that underpins it is questionable. Inconsistencies in terminologies and concepts also exist. Different models of emergency management exist internationally but the optimal system is unknown. This study examines the evidence-base and evidence requirements for emergency planning in the UK health context. Methods The study involved semi-structured interviews with key stakeholders and opinion leaders. Purposive sampling was used to obtain a breadth of views from various agencies involved in emergency planning and response. Interviews were then analysed using a grounded approach using standard framework analysis techniques. Results We conducted 17 key informant interviews. Interviewees identified greater gaps in operational than technical aspects of emergency planning. Social and behavioural knowledge gaps were highlighted with regards to how individuals and organisations deal with risk and behave in emergencies. Evidence-based approaches to public engagement and for developing community resilience to disasters are lacking. Other gaps included how knowledge was developed and used. Conflicting views with regards to the optimal configuration and operation of the emergency management system were voiced. Conclusions Four thematic categories for future research emerged: (i) Knowledge-base for emergency management: Further exploration is needed of how knowledge is acquired, valued, disseminated, adopted and retained. (ii) Social and behavioural issues: Greater understanding of how individuals approach risk and behave in emergencies is required. (iii) Organisational issues in emergencies: Several conflicting organisational issues were identified; value of planning versus plans, flexible versus standardized procedures, top-down versus bottom-up engagement, generic versus

  8. Emergence of collective action and environmental networking in relation to radioactive waste management

    SciTech Connect

    Williams, R.G.; Payne, B.A.

    1985-01-01

    This paper explores the relationship between the national environmental movement and nuclear technology in relation to a local emergent group. The historical development of nuclear technology in this conutry has followed a path leading to continued fear and mistrust of waste management by a portion of the population. At the forefront of opposition to nuclear technology are people and groups endorsing environmental values. Because of the antinuclear attitudes of environmentalists and the value orientation of appropriate technologists in the national environmental movement, it seems appropriate for local groups to call on these national groups for assistance regarding nuclear-related issues. A case study is used to illustrate how a local action group, once integrated into a national environmental network, can become an effective, legitimate participant in social change. The formation, emergence, mobilization, and networking of a local group opposed to a specific federal radioactive waste management plan is described based on organizational literature. However, inherent contradictions in defining the local versus national benefits plus inherent problems within the environmental movement could be acting to limit the effectiveness of such networks. 49 refs.

  9. Grand challenge problems in environmental modeling and remediation: groundwater contaminant transport

    SciTech Connect

    Todd Arbogast; Steve Bryant; Clint N. Dawson; Mary F. Wheeler

    1998-08-31

    This report describes briefly the work of the Center for Subsurface Modeling (CSM) of the University of Texas at Austin (and Rice University prior to September 1995) on the Partnership in Computational Sciences Consortium (PICS) project entitled Grand Challenge Problems in Environmental Modeling and Remediation: Groundwater Contaminant Transport.

  10. Environmental decision support systems (EDSS)development- challenges and best practices

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Despite the perceived value of DSS in informing environmental and natural resource management, DSS tools often fail to be adopted by intended end users. By drawing together the experience of a global group of EDSS developers, we have identified and assessed key challenges in EDSS development and off...

  11. THE MILLENNIUM CHALLENGE: THE U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY'S RESPONSE TO INVASIVE SPECIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is responding to the scientific and regulatory challenges of invasive species in a variety of ways. One response has been to use existing programs and regulations, as appropriate, to address invasive species. A recent example is th...

  12. Challenges in the Development of Environmental Management Systems on the Modern University Campus

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bero, Bridget N.; Doerry, Eckehard; Middleton, Ryan; Meinhardt, Christian

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to describe challenges and lessons learned in the design and development of a comprehensive, flexible environmental management system (EMS) in a real university setting; also to inform development of similar systems elsewhere and provide a modular, extensible software architecture for such efforts.…

  13. NEUROTOXIC EFFECTS OF ENVIRONMENTAL AGENTS: DATA GAPS THAT CHALLENGE DOSE-RESPONSE ESTIMATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Neurotoxic effects of environmental agents: Data gaps that challenge dose-response estimation
    S Gutter*, P Mendola+, SG Selevan**, D Rice** (*UNC Chapel Hill; +US EPA, NHEERL; **US EPA, NCEA)

    Dose-response estimation is a critical feature of risk assessment. It can be...

  14. The emergence of land change science for global environmental change and sustainability

    PubMed Central

    Turner, B. L.; Lambin, Eric F.; Reenberg, Anette

    2007-01-01

    Land change science has emerged as a fundamental component of global environmental change and sustainability research. This interdisciplinary field seeks to understand the dynamics of land cover and land use as a coupled human–environment system to address theory, concepts, models, and applications relevant to environmental and societal problems, including the intersection of the two. The major components and advances in land change are addressed: observation and monitoring; understanding the coupled system—causes, impacts, and consequences; modeling; and synthesis issues. The six articles of the special feature are introduced and situated within these components of study. PMID:18093934

  15. Synchronous Environmental and Cultural Change in the Emergence of Agricultural Economies 10,000 Years Ago in the Levant

    PubMed Central

    Borrell, Ferran; Junno, Aripekka; Barceló, Joan Antón

    2015-01-01

    The commonly held belief that the emergence and establishment of farming communities in the Levant was a smooth socio-economic continuum during the Pre-Pottery Neolithic (ca. 12,000-9,000 cal BP) with only rare minor disruptions is challenged by recently obtained evidence from this region. Using a database of archaeological radiocarbon dates and diagnostic material culture records from a series of key sites in the northern Levant we show that the hitherto apparent long-term continuity interpreted as the origins and consolidation of agricultural systems was not linear and uninterrupted. A major cultural discontinuity is observed in the archaeological record around 10,000 cal BP in synchrony with a Holocene Rapid Climate Change (RCC), a short period of climatic instability recorded in the Northern Hemisphere. This study demonstrates the interconnectedness of the first agricultural economies and the ecosystems they inhabited, and emphasizes the complex nature of human responses to environmental change during the Neolithic period in the Levant. Moreover, it provides a new environmental-cultural scenario that needs to be incorporated in the models reconstructing both the establishment of agricultural economy in southwestern Asia and the impact of environmental changes on human populations. PMID:26241310

  16. Synchronous Environmental and Cultural Change in the Emergence of Agricultural Economies 10,000 Years Ago in the Levant.

    PubMed

    Borrell, Ferran; Junno, Aripekka; Barceló, Joan Antón

    2015-01-01

    The commonly held belief that the emergence and establishment of farming communities in the Levant was a smooth socio-economic continuum during the Pre-Pottery Neolithic (ca. 12,000-9,000 cal BP) with only rare minor disruptions is challenged by recently obtained evidence from this region. Using a database of archaeological radiocarbon dates and diagnostic material culture records from a series of key sites in the northern Levant we show that the hitherto apparent long-term continuity interpreted as the origins and consolidation of agricultural systems was not linear and uninterrupted. A major cultural discontinuity is observed in the archaeological record around 10,000 cal BP in synchrony with a Holocene Rapid Climate Change (RCC), a short period of climatic instability recorded in the Northern Hemisphere. This study demonstrates the interconnectedness of the first agricultural economies and the ecosystems they inhabited, and emphasizes the complex nature of human responses to environmental change during the Neolithic period in the Levant. Moreover, it provides a new environmental-cultural scenario that needs to be incorporated in the models reconstructing both the establishment of agricultural economy in southwestern Asia and the impact of environmental changes on human populations. PMID:26241310

  17. Emergency Response to and Preparedness for Extreme Weather Events and Environmental Changes in China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Li; Liao, Yongfeng; Yang, Linsheng; Li, Hairong; Ye, Bixiong; Wang, Wuyi

    2016-03-01

    China has achieved impressive rapid economic growth over the past 30 years but accompanied by significant extreme weather events and environmental changes caused by global change and overfast urbanization. Using the absolute hazards index (AHI), we assessed the spatial distribution patterns and related health effects of 4 major extreme natural disasters, including drought, floods (landslides, mudslides), hails, and typhoons from 2000 to 2011 at the provincial level in China. The results showed that (1) central and south China were the most affected by the 4 natural disasters, and north China suffered less; (2) the provinces with higher AHI suffered most from total death, missing people, collapse, and emergently relocated population; (3) the present health emergency response system to disasters in China mainly lacks a multidisciplinary approach. In the concluding section of this article, suggestions on preparedness and rapid response to extreme health events from environmental changes are proposed. PMID:25246501

  18. Long-distance monitoring of physiological and environmental parameters for emergency operators.

    PubMed

    Magenes, Giovanni; Curone, Davide; Lanati, Matteo; Secco, Emanuele L

    2009-01-01

    The recent disaster provoked by the earthquake in middle Italy has pointed out the need for minimizing risks endangering rescuers' lives. An European Project called ProeTEX (Protection e-Textiles: MicroNanoStructured fiber systems for Emergency-Disaster Wear) aims at developing smart garments able to monitor physiological and environmental parameters of emergency operators. The goal is to realize a wearable system detecting health state parameters of the users (heart rate, breathing rate, body temperature, blood oxygen saturation, position, activity and posture) and environmental variables (external temperature, presence of toxic gases and heat flux passing through the garments) and remotely transmitting useful information to the operation manager. This work presents an overview of the main features of the second prototype realized by ProeTEX with particular emphasis to the sensor's body network and the long distance transmission of signals. PMID:19963886

  19. Human and environmental health challenges for the next decade (2010–2020).

    PubMed

    Bonnefoi, Marc S; Belanger, Scott E; Devlin, Dennis J; Doerrer, Nancy G; Embry, Michelle R; Fukushima, Shoji; Harpur, Ernest S; Hines, Ronald N; Holsapple, Michael P; Kim, James H; MacDonald, James S; O'Lone, Raegan; Pettit, Syril D; Stevens, James L; Takei, Ayako S; Tinkle, Sally S; van der Laan, Jan Willem

    2010-11-01

    The public health and environmental communities will face many challenges during the next decade. To identify significant issues that might be addressed as part of the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI) Health and Environmental Sciences Institute (HESI) scientific portfolio, an expert group of key government, academic, and industry scientists from around the world were assembled in 2009 to map the current and future landscape of scientific and regulatory challenges. The value of the scientific mapping exercise was the development of a tool which HESI, individual companies, research institutions, government agencies, and regulatory authorities can use to anticipate key challenges, place them into context, and thus strategically refine and expand scientific project portfolios into the future. PMID:20854192

  20. Ethical challenges in emergency medical services. A special contribution of the Ethics Committee, National Association of Emergency Medical Services Physicians.

    PubMed

    1993-01-01

    Patient autonomy, beneficence, and justice are the fundamental ethical principles of an emergency medical service. Ethical conflicts are present in the daily practice of prehospital care. These conflicts surround issues of resuscitation, futile therapy, consent, and refusal of care, duty, and confidentiality. Emergency medical services must remain fair and equitable, equally available to those it is designed to serve, regardless of the patient's social or economic status. Establishing priorities for patient care is dictated by medical and operational concerns. Education and information regarding ethical issues are important for the providers of prehospital medical care as well as the medical director. Policies and protocols must continue to be developed to address requests to limit resuscitation, such as refusal of care and patient confidentiality. Policies should be developed in conjunction with experienced legal advice. Current training does not equip even the most advanced prehospital care provider to deal easily with every potential situation. Many learn by experience, some are guided by clear policy. Ideally, medical control personnel will be educated, interested, and available to address dilemmas which arise. Where possible, policies and procedures should be developed to address ethical issues which are likely to be faced by EMS personnel. PMID:10155466

  1. Contributions of pesticide residue chemistry to improving food and environmental safety: past and present accomplishments and future challenges.

    PubMed

    Seiber, James N; Kleinschmidt, Loreen A

    2011-07-27

    The principles of modern pesticide residue chemistry were articulated in the 1950s. Early authors pointed out the advantages of systematizing and standardizing analytical methods for pesticides so that they could be widely practiced and the results could be reproduced from one laboratory to the next. The availability of improved methods has led to a much more complete understanding of pesticide behavior and fate in foods and the environment. Using methods based largely upon gas chromatography (GC) and high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) coupled increasingly with mass spectrometry (MS) and MS(n) as the detection tool, residues can be measured at parts per billion levels and below in a variety of food and environmental matrices. Development of efficient extraction and cleanup methods, techniques such as ELISA, efficient sample preparation techniques such as QuEChERS, and automated laboratory and field instrumentation has also contributed to the tools available for use in modern pesticide residue analysis. As a result, great strides have been made in improving food and worker safety and in understanding environmental behavior and fate of pesticides. There are many challenges remaining in the field of pesticide residue chemistry that will continue to stimulate analytical chemists. New chemistries are emerging, often patterned on complex natural products. Analyzing for the parent chemicals and potentially multiple breakdown products will require analytical ingenuity. The development of more sensitive bioassays and knowledge of unintended side effects will challenge residue chemistry as well, as in the case of following the fate of environmental endocrine disruptors associated with some pesticides as well as nonpesticide contaminants from packaging materials and other familiar articles. Continued funding and other resources to ensure better training, international cooperation, and accelerated research and development activities will be a constant need in

  2. Biosensing and environmental sensing for emergency and protection e-Textiles.

    PubMed

    Magenes, G; Curone, D; Secco, E L; Bonfiglio, A

    2011-01-01

    The ProeTEX project introduced for the first time a complete set of smart garments integrating sensors for the physiological and environmental monitoring of emergency operators. These "smart" garments have been deeply tested in emergency-like contexts by professional rescuers, in order to assess real-time acquisition, processing and transmission of data from moving subjects while operating in harsh conditions. Here we report an overview of the main results obtained during field trials performed in 2010 by Italian and French professional firefighters, in specialized training centers, while dressing the ProeTEX prototypes. Results clearly demonstrate the benefit and step forward of such a system in order to monitor and coordinate rescuers even during intervention far away from the emergency headquarter. PMID:22256287

  3. International Space Station Environmental Control and Life Support Emergency Response Verification for Node 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, David E.

    2008-01-01

    The International Space Station (ISS) Node 1 Environmental Control and Life Support (ECLS) System is comprised of five subsystems: Atmosphere Control and Supply (ACS), Atmosphere Revitalization (AR), Fire Detection and Suppression (FDS), Temperature and Humidity Control (THC), and Water Recovery and Management (WRM). This paper provides a summary of the Node 1 Emergency Response capability, which includes nominal and off-nominal FDS operation, off nominal ACS operation, and off-nominal THC operation. These subsystems provide the capability to help aid the crew members during an emergency cabin depressurization, a toxic spill, or a fire. The paper will also provide a discussion of the detailed Node 1 ECLS Element Verification methodologies for operation of the Node 1 Emergency Response hardware operations utilized during the Qualification phase.

  4. Emergency bronchoscopy for foreign-body aspiration in a child with type I mucopolysaccharidosis: a challenging airway management experience.

    PubMed

    Kendigelen, Pinar; Tunali, Yusuf; Tutuncu, Ayse; Ashyralyyeva, Gulruh; Emre, Senol; Kaya, Guner

    2016-08-01

    The mucopolysaccharidosis (MPS) is a rare lysosomal storage disease. Glycosaminoglycans (GAG) accumulate in musculoskeletal system, connective tissues. Enlarged tongue, short immobile neck, and limited mobility of the cervical spine and temporomandibular joints render the airway management potentially risky. MPS children have high anesthetic risks, especially in airway management of emergency situations. The foreign-body aspiration requiring intervention with rigid bronchoscopy is an urgent and risky clinical situation. We present our experience with a challenging airway management with a three-year-old child with MPS who needed emergency bronchoscopy due to peanut aspiration. PMID:27146659

  5. Altitude and environmental climate effects on bronchiolitis severity among children presenting to the emergency department.

    PubMed

    Wang, Vincent J; Cavagnaro, Christopher S; Clark, Sunday; Camargo, Carlos A; Mansbach, Jonathan M

    2012-10-01

    Bronchiolitis, a respiratory illness, is the leading cause of hospitalization for infants. The authors examined whether environmental factors contributed to the severity of the bronchiolitis illness. They compiled environmental data (temperature, dew point, wind speed, precipitation, altitude, and barometric pressure) to augment clinical data from a 30-center prospective cohort study of emergency department patients with bronchiolitis. They analyzed these data using multivariable logistic regression. Higher altitude was modestly associated with increased retractions (odds ratio [OR] = 1.6; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.1-2.1; p < .001) and decreased air entry (OR = 2.0; 95% CI = 1.6-2.6; p < .001). Increasing wind speed had a minor association with more severe retractions (OR = 1.3; 95% CI = 1.1-1.7; p = .02). Higher dew points had a minor association with lower admission rates (OR = 0.9; 95% CI = 0.8-0.996; p = .04). Altitude and environmental climate variables appear to have modest associations with the severity of bronchiolitis in the emergency department. Further studies need to be conducted, however, on limiting exposure to these environmental variables or increasing humidity before making broad recommendations. PMID:23091965

  6. Establishing a mobile environmental survey system for real-time emergency response.

    PubMed

    Fang, Hsin-Fa; Chen, Ing-Jane; Wang, Chu-Fang

    2014-02-01

    After the 9/11 incident, the needs of environmental survey mobility were increased because the time and place of terrorism attacks are more unpredictable than traditional radiological and nuclear accident. In recent years, more and more attention has been paid to the radiation protection of the survey workers in the field. The Institute of Nuclear Energy Research has established a Mobile Environmental Survey System (MESS) for real time emergency response by using network communication. The system consists of three major functional components: the mobile units, the management center, and the work stations. The system can display real time survey data on an electric map collected by the survey workers from the remote field to improve the environmental survey mobility. The system can also send the survey workers messages/warnings according to geographic information and the location of the mobile unit to keep them from unnecessary radiation exposure that may be an effective way to the goal of "as low as reasonably achievable" for environmental surveys. MESS has been adopted as an essential tool for emergency response in Taiwan. The application experience of MESS in the relative exercises will be discussed in this paper. PMID:24378562

  7. Environmental factors and seed abundance influence seedling emergence of a perennial forest herb

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kolb, Annette; Barsch, Katharina

    2010-09-01

    Seedlings are an important, but vulnerable stage in the life cycle of plants. The identification of factors affecting their recruitment is therefore fundamental for understanding basic plant population processes as well as plant distribution and abundance. In this study, we used a combined experimental and observational approach to examine how microsite quality and quantity as well as seed supply affect different processes of seedling establishment, using the perennial forest herb Phyteuma spicatum (Campanulaceae) as model species. This species reproduces exclusively by seed, and seedling emergence, growth and survival are therefore critical stages in its life cycle. Seedlings were frequent in microsites with bare soil and overall high light intensities, and were less common in sites with deep litter layers as well as dense and low vegetation. Seed addition, via experimental sowings or via the natural seed rain, consistently enhanced seedling emergence. Seed density effects, however, were variable among years; seedling emergence rates decreased at high seed densities in one of two seed cohorts. Seedling emergence time, size and survival were largely not affected by microhabitat type or seed density. In summary, our findings suggest that environmental factors and seed abundance determine recruitment success of P. spicatum and that effects on early processes of seedling establishment (emergence) are stronger than effects on late processes of establishment (growth and survival). Our work thereby contributes to a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying recruitment patterns of this species and other perennial herbs.

  8. The exposome concept: a challenge and a potential driver for environmental health research.

    PubMed

    Siroux, Valérie; Agier, Lydiane; Slama, Rémy

    2016-06-01

    The exposome concept was defined in 2005 as encompassing all environmental exposures from conception onwards, as a new strategy to evidence environmental disease risk factors. Although very appealing, the exposome concept is challenging in many respects. In terms of assessment, several hundreds of time-varying exposures need to be considered, but increasing the number of exposures assessed should not be done at the cost of increased exposure misclassification. Accurately assessing the exposome currently requires numerous measurements, which rely on different technologies; resulting in an expensive set of protocols. In the future, high-throughput 'omics technologies may be a promising technique to integrate a wide range of exposures from a small numbers of biological matrices. Assessing the association between many exposures and health raises statistical challenges. Due to the correlation structure of the exposome, existing statistical methods cannot fully and efficiently untangle the exposures truly affecting the health outcome from correlated exposures. Other statistical challenges relate to accounting for exposure misclassification or identifying synergistic effects between exposures. On-going exposome projects are trying to overcome technical and statistical challenges. From a public health perspective, a better understanding of the environmental risk factors should open the way to improved prevention strategies. PMID:27246588

  9. Modulation of persistent organic pollutant toxicity through nutritional intervention: emerging opportunities in biomedicine and environmental remediation.

    PubMed

    Petriello, Michael C; Newsome, Bradley J; Dziubla, Thomas D; Hilt, J Zach; Bhattacharyya, Dibakar; Hennig, Bernhard

    2014-09-01

    Environmental pollution is increasing worldwide, and there is evidence that exposure to halogenated persistent organic pollutants (POPs) such as polychlorinated biphenyls can contribute to the pathology of inflammatory diseases such as atherosclerosis, diabetes, and cancer. Pollutant removal from contaminated sites and subsequent pollutant degradation are critical for reducing the long-term health risks associated with exposure. However, complete remediation of a toxicant from the environment is very difficult and cost-prohibitive. Furthermore, remediation technologies often result in the generation of secondary toxicants. Considering these circumstances, environmentally-friendly and sustainable remediation technologies and biomedical solutions to reduce vulnerability to environmental chemical insults need to be explored to reduce the overall health risks associated with exposure to environmental pollutants. We propose that positive lifestyle changes such as healthful nutrition and consumption of diets rich in fruits and vegetables or bioactive nutrients with antioxidant and/or anti-inflammatory properties will reduce the body's vulnerability to environmental stressors and thus reduce toxicant-mediated disease pathologies. Interestingly, emerging evidence now implicates the incorporation of bioactive nutrients, such as plant-derived polyphenols, in technologies focused on the capture, sensing and remediation of halogenated POPs. We propose that human nutritional intervention in concert with the use of natural polyphenol sensing and remediation platforms may provide a sensible means to develop primary and long-term prevention strategies of diseases associated with many environmental toxic insults including halogenated POPs. PMID:24530186

  10. Modulation of persistent organic pollutant toxicity through nutritional intervention: emerging opportunities in biomedicine and environmental remediation

    PubMed Central

    Petriello, Michael C.; Newsome, Bradley J.; Dziubla, Thomas D.; Hilt, J. Zach; Bhattacharyya, Dibakar; Hennig, Bernhard

    2014-01-01

    Environmental pollution is increasing worldwide, and there is evidence that exposure to halogenated persistent organic pollutants (POPs) such as polychlorinated biphenyls can contribute to the pathology of inflammatory diseases such as atherosclerosis, diabetes, and cancer. Pollutant removal from contaminated sites and subsequent pollutant degradation are critical for reducing the long-term health risks associated with exposure. However, complete remediation of a toxicant from the environment is very difficult and cost-prohibitive. Furthermore, remediation technologies often result in the generation of secondary toxicants. Considering these circumstances, environmentally-friendly and sustainable remediation technologies and biomedical solutions to reduce vulnerability to environmental chemical insults need to be explored to reduce the overall health risks associate with exposure to environmental pollutants. We propose that positive lifestyle changes such as healthful nutrition and consumption of diets rich in fruits and vegetables or bioactive nutrients with antioxidant and/or anti-inflammatory properties will reduce the body’s vulnerability to environmental stressors and thus reduce toxicant-mediated disease pathologies. Interestingly, emerging evidence now implicates the incorporation of bioactive nutrients, such as plant-derived polyphenols, in technologies focused on the capture, sensing and remediation of halogenated POPs. We propose that human nutritional intervention in concert with the use of natural polyphenol sensing and remediation platforms may provide a sensible means to develop primary and long-term prevention strategies of diseases associated with many environmental toxic insults including halogenated POPs. PMID:24530186

  11. Effects of competing environmental variables and signage on route-choices in simulated everyday and emergency wayfinding situations.

    PubMed

    Vilar, Elisângela; Rebelo, Francisco; Noriega, Paulo; Duarte, Emília; Mayhorn, Christopher B

    2014-01-01

    This study examined the relative influence of environmental variables (corridor width and brightness) and signage (directional and exit signs), when presented in competition, on participants' route-choices in two situational variables (everyday vs. emergency), during indoor wayfinding in virtual environments. A virtual reality-based methodology was used. Thus, participants attempted to find a room (everyday situation) in a virtual hotel, followed by a fire-related emergency egress (emergency situation). Different behaviours were observed. In the everyday situation, for no-signs condition, participants choose mostly the wider and brighter corridors, suggesting a heavy reliance on the environmental affordances. Conversely, for signs condition, participants mostly complied with signage, suggesting a greater reliance on the signs rather than on the environmental cues. During emergency, without signage, reliance on environmental affordances seems to be affected by the intersection type. In the sign condition, the reliance on environmental affordances that started strong decreases along the egress route. PMID:24635043

  12. Environmentally sound irrigated agriculture in the arid west: New challenges for water resources planners and environmental scientists

    SciTech Connect

    Quinn, N.W.T.

    1991-04-01

    This is an exciting time for water resources planners and environmental scientists in the State and Federal Agencies in California. The growing environmental awareness of the public has raised their interest in the manner by which water is managed and allocated. Current and future impending water shortages are challenging engineers and planners to make sound policy and system operations decisions to maximize the utility of scarce water resources while ensuring that the environment within which we live is adequately protected to the satisfaction of an informed public. New and innovative decision support systems are needed to meet these challenges that are flexible, comprehensible and accurate and which allow the public a more visible role in the planning process. These changes may help to bring the agricultural and environmental communities closer together in finding solutions to water resources problems and wrest policy making for water resources management out of the hands of lawyers and the courts and restore it to those whose livelihoods are affected by the intentions of these policies. 4 refs.

  13. The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief: from successes of the emergency response to challenges of sustainable action.

    PubMed

    Merson, Michael H; Curran, James W; Griffith, Caroline Hope; Ragunanthan, Braveen

    2012-07-01

    The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) has made a major contribution to the reduction of the global HIV/AIDS burden. The program initially focused on rapidly scaling up treatment and prevention services in fifteen low-income countries, then transitioned to an approach that emphasizes sustainability, defined as the capacity to maintain program services after financial, managerial, and technical assistance from the United States and other external donors essentially ceases. Today, PEPFAR continues to expand its HIV prevention, treatment, and care activities while also supporting capacity-building initiatives, coordination efforts, and implementation science. The latter is research focused on improving service delivery, maximizing cost-effectiveness, and achieving public health impact. Recent advances in both scientific knowledge and the provision of prevention, treatment, and care services have bred cautious optimism about greatly reducing the spread of HIV. However, success will require a substantial increase in resources, strengthened health systems, renewed commitment to HIV prevention, and well-financed efforts to develop an effective HIV vaccine. PMID:22778326

  14. Citizen Science and Emerging Technologies

    EPA Science Inventory

    This session will discuss challenges and opportunities associated with citizen science and how emerging technologies can support citizen science activities. In addition, the session will provide an overview of low-cost environmental monitors and sensors and introduce the Citizen...

  15. Opportunities and challenges in integrating the science and policy of global environmental change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sundquist, E. T.

    2002-05-01

    The American Geophysical Union's Focus Group (formerly Committee) on Global Environmental Change seeks to foster the interdisciplinary interactions needed for scientific study and public understanding of global environmental change. The Focus Group is exploring ways to improve communication of scientific information to policy makers, and ways to better inform the research community about relevant public policy activities. Scientific information is increasingly influential in shaping public opinion about global environmental change. Likewise, societal concerns are increasingly prominent in the development of plans for scientific study of climate change and other global environmental issues. These developments emphasize the importance of conveying scientific information without political advocacy, and of formulating public policies that include broad advancement of scientific knowledge. This presentation will discuss these challenges and opportunities using examples from recent and pending legislation relevant to climate and carbon-cycle research. Suggestions will be made for ongoing efforts to enhance communications between the research community and policy makers.

  16. Exploring the Everyday Life Information Needs, Practices, and Challenges of Emerging Adults with Intellectual Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hanson-Baldauf, Dana

    2013-01-01

    This dissertation research addresses a gap in the library and information science literature on everyday life information (ELI) needs and experiences of emerging adults with intellectual disabilities (I/DD). Emerging adulthood refers to the period between the late teen years and mid-twenties. Although this is a period of significant change for all…

  17. Ethical Issues in Environmental Health Research Related to Public Health Emergencies: Reflections on the GuLF STUDY

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Aubrey K.; Kwok, Richard K.; Engel, Lawrence S.; Sandler, Dale P.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Health research in the context of an environmental disaster with implications for public health raises challenging ethical issues. This article explores ethical issues that arose in the Gulf Long-term Follow-up Study (GuLF STUDY) and provides guidance for future research. Ethical issues encountered by GuLF STUDY investigators included a) minimizing risks and promoting benefits to participants, b) obtaining valid informed consent, c) providing financial compensation to participants, d) working with vulnerable participants, e) protecting participant confidentiality, f) addressing conflicts of interest, g) dealing with legal implications of research, and h) obtaining expeditious review from the institutional review board (IRB), community groups, and other committees. To ensure that ethical issues are handled properly, it is important for investigators to work closely with IRBs during the development and implementation of research and to consult with groups representing the community. Researchers should consider developing protocols, consent forms, survey instruments, and other documents prior to the advent of a public health emergency to allow for adequate and timely review by constituents. When an emergency arises, these materials can be quickly modified to take into account unique circumstances and implementation details. PMID:26325057

  18. Physical Health Problems and Environmental Challenges Influence Balancing Behaviour in Laying Hens

    PubMed Central

    LeBlanc, Stephanie; Tobalske, Bret; Quinton, Margaret; Springthorpe, Dwight; Szkotnicki, Bill; Wuerbel, Hanno; Harlander-Matauschek, Alexandra

    2016-01-01

    With rising public concern for animal welfare, many major food chains and restaurants are changing their policies, strictly buying their eggs from non-cage producers. However, with the additional space in these cage-free systems to perform natural behaviours and movements comes the risk of injury. We evaluated the ability to maintain balance in adult laying hens with health problems (footpad dermatitis, keel damage, poor wing feather cover; n = 15) using a series of environmental challenges and compared such abilities with those of healthy birds (n = 5). Environmental challenges consisted of visual and spatial constraints, created using a head mask, perch obstacles, and static and swaying perch states. We hypothesized that perch movement, environmental challenges, and diminished physical health would negatively impact perching performance demonstrated as balance (as measured by time spent on perch and by number of falls of the perch) and would require more exaggerated correctional movements. We measured perching stability whereby each bird underwent eight 30-second trials on a static and swaying perch: with and without disrupted vision (head mask), with and without space limitations (obstacles) and combinations thereof. Video recordings (600 Hz) and a three-axis accelerometer/gyroscope (100 Hz) were used to measure the number of jumps/falls, latencies to leave the perch, as well as magnitude and direction of both linear and rotational balance-correcting movements. Laying hens with and without physical health problems, in both challenged and unchallenged environments, managed to perch and remain off the ground. We attribute this capacity to our training of the birds. Environmental challenges and physical state had an effect on the use of accelerations and rotations to stabilize themselves on a perch. Birds with physical health problems performed a higher frequency of rotational corrections to keep the body centered over the perch, whereas, for both health categories

  19. Physical Health Problems and Environmental Challenges Influence Balancing Behaviour in Laying Hens.

    PubMed

    LeBlanc, Stephanie; Tobalske, Bret; Quinton, Margaret; Springthorpe, Dwight; Szkotnicki, Bill; Wuerbel, Hanno; Harlander-Matauschek, Alexandra

    2016-01-01

    With rising public concern for animal welfare, many major food chains and restaurants are changing their policies, strictly buying their eggs from non-cage producers. However, with the additional space in these cage-free systems to perform natural behaviours and movements comes the risk of injury. We evaluated the ability to maintain balance in adult laying hens with health problems (footpad dermatitis, keel damage, poor wing feather cover; n = 15) using a series of environmental challenges and compared such abilities with those of healthy birds (n = 5). Environmental challenges consisted of visual and spatial constraints, created using a head mask, perch obstacles, and static and swaying perch states. We hypothesized that perch movement, environmental challenges, and diminished physical health would negatively impact perching performance demonstrated as balance (as measured by time spent on perch and by number of falls of the perch) and would require more exaggerated correctional movements. We measured perching stability whereby each bird underwent eight 30-second trials on a static and swaying perch: with and without disrupted vision (head mask), with and without space limitations (obstacles) and combinations thereof. Video recordings (600 Hz) and a three-axis accelerometer/gyroscope (100 Hz) were used to measure the number of jumps/falls, latencies to leave the perch, as well as magnitude and direction of both linear and rotational balance-correcting movements. Laying hens with and without physical health problems, in both challenged and unchallenged environments, managed to perch and remain off the ground. We attribute this capacity to our training of the birds. Environmental challenges and physical state had an effect on the use of accelerations and rotations to stabilize themselves on a perch. Birds with physical health problems performed a higher frequency of rotational corrections to keep the body centered over the perch, whereas, for both health categories

  20. Integrated nonlinear photonics. Emerging applications and ongoing challenges - A mini review

    SciTech Connect

    Hendrickson, Scott M.; Foster, Amy C.; Camacho, Ryan M.; Clader, B. David

    2014-11-26

    In this paper, we provide a review of recent progress in integrated nonlinear photonics with a focus on emerging applications in all-optical signal processing, ultra-low-power all-optical switching, and quantum information processing.

  1. Factors responsible for the emergence of arboviruses; strategies, challenges and limitations for their control.

    PubMed

    Liang, Guodong; Gao, Xiaoyan; Gould, Ernest A

    2015-03-01

    Slave trading of Africans to the Americas, during the 16th to the 19th century was responsible for the first recorded emergence in the New World of two arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses), yellow fever virus and dengue virus. Many other arboviruses have since emerged from their sylvatic reservoirs and dispersed globally due to evolving factors that include anthropological behaviour, commercial transportation and land-remediation. Here, we outline some characteristics of these highly divergent arboviruses, including the variety of life cycles they have developed and the mechanisms by which they have adapted to evolving changes in habitat and host availability. We cite recent examples of virus emergence that exemplify how arboviruses have exploited the consequences of the modern human lifestyle. Using our current understanding of these viruses, we also attempt to demonstrate some of the limitations encountered in developing control strategies to reduce the impact of future emerging arbovirus diseases. Finally, we present recommendations for development by an international panel of experts reporting directly to World Health Organization, with the intention of providing internationally acceptable guidelines for improving emerging arbovirus disease control strategies. Success in these aims should alleviate the suffering and costs encountered during recent decades when arboviruses have emerged from their sylvatic environment. PMID:26038768

  2. Factors responsible for the emergence of arboviruses; strategies, challenges and limitations for their control

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Guodong; Gao, Xiaoyan; Gould, Ernest A

    2015-01-01

    Slave trading of Africans to the Americas, during the 16th to the 19th century was responsible for the first recorded emergence in the New World of two arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses), yellow fever virus and dengue virus. Many other arboviruses have since emerged from their sylvatic reservoirs and dispersed globally due to evolving factors that include anthropological behaviour, commercial transportation and land-remediation. Here, we outline some characteristics of these highly divergent arboviruses, including the variety of life cycles they have developed and the mechanisms by which they have adapted to evolving changes in habitat and host availability. We cite recent examples of virus emergence that exemplify how arboviruses have exploited the consequences of the modern human lifestyle. Using our current understanding of these viruses, we also attempt to demonstrate some of the limitations encountered in developing control strategies to reduce the impact of future emerging arbovirus diseases. Finally, we present recommendations for development by an international panel of experts reporting directly to World Health Organization, with the intention of providing internationally acceptable guidelines for improving emerging arbovirus disease control strategies. Success in these aims should alleviate the suffering and costs encountered during recent decades when arboviruses have emerged from their sylvatic environment. PMID:26038768

  3. DATA ACQUISITION FOR ENVIRONMENTAL TRANSPORT AND FATE SCREENING FOR COMPOUNDS OF INTEREST TO THE OFFICE OF EMERGENCY AND REMEDIAL RESPONSE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Physical properties, equilibrium, and kinetic constants for evaluating the transformation and transport in aquatic systems for organic chemicals of interest to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Emergency and Remedial Response have been obtained from the literat...

  4. From process to proxy: Ecological challenges and opportunities of tree-ring based environmental reconstructions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilmking, Martin; Buras, Allan; Heinrich, Ingo; Scharnweber, Tobias; Simard, Sonia; Smiljanic, Marko; van der Maaten, Ernst; van der Maaten-Theunissen, Marieke

    2014-05-01

    Trees are sessile, long-living organisms and as such constantly need to adapt to changing environmental conditions. Accordingly, they often show high phenotypic plasticity (the ability to change phenotypic traits, such as allocation of resources) in response to environmental change. This high phenotypic plasticity is generally considered as one of the main ingredients for a sessile organism to survive and reach high ages. Precisely because of the ability of trees to reach old age and their in-ability to simply run away when conditions get worse, growth information recorded in tree rings has long been used as a major environmental proxy, covering time scales from decades to millennia. Past environmental conditions (e.g. climate) are recorded in i.e. annual tree-ring width, early- and latewood width, wood density, isotopic concentrations, cell anatomy or wood chemistry. One prerequisite for a reconstruction is that the relationship between the environmental variable influencing tree growth and the tree-growth variable itself is stable through time. This, however, might contrast the ecological theory of high plasticity and the trees ability to adapt to change. To untangle possible mechanisms leading to stable or unstable relationships between tree growth and environmental variables, it is helpful to have exact site information and several proxy variables of each tree-ring series available. Although we gain insight into the environmental history of a sampling site when sampling today, this is extremely difficult when using archeological wood. In this latter case, we face the additional challenge of unknown origin, provenance and (or) site conditions, making it even more important to use multiple proxy time-series from the same sample. Here, we review typical examples, where the relationship between tree growth and environmental variables seems 1) stable and 2) instable through time, and relate these two cases to ecological theory. Based on ecological theory, we then

  5. Challenges implementing bar-coded medication administration in the emergency room in comparison to medical surgical units.

    PubMed

    Glover, Nancy

    2013-03-01

    Bar-coded medication administration has been successfully implemented and utilized to decrease medication errors at a number of hospitals in recent years. The purpose of this article was to discuss the varying success in utilization of bar-coded medication administration on medical-surgical units and in the emergency department. Utilization reports were analyzed to better understand the challenges between the units. Many factors negatively impacted utilization in the emergency department, including the inability to use bar-coded medication administration for verbal orders or to document medications distributed by the prescribing providers, unique aspects of emergency department nursing workflow, additional steps to chart when using bar-coded medication administration, and alert fatigue. Hardware problems affected all users. Bar-coded medication administration in its current form is more suitable for use on medical-surgical floors than in the emergency department. New solutions should be developed for bar-coded medication administration in the emergency department, keeping in mind requirements to chart medications when there is no order in the system, document medications distributed by prescribing providers, adapt to unpredictable nursing workflow, minimize steps to chart with bar-coded medication administration, limit alerts to those that are clinically meaningful, and choose reliable hardware with adequate bar-code scanning capability. PMID:23321481

  6. Environmental impacts of beef production: Review of challenges and perspectives for durability.

    PubMed

    Gerber, Pierre J; Mottet, Anne; Opio, Carolyn I; Falcucci, Alessandra; Teillard, Félix

    2015-11-01

    Beef makes a substantial contribution to food security, providing protein, energy and also essential micro-nutrients to human populations. Rumination allows cattle - and other ruminant species - to digest fibrous feeds that cannot be directly consumed by humans and thus to make a net positive contribution to food balances. This contribution is of particular importance in marginal areas, where agro-ecological conditions and weak infrastructures do not offer much alternative. It is also valuable where cattle convert crop residues and by-products into edible products and where they contribute to soil fertility through their impact on nutrients and organic matter cycles. At the same time, environmental sustainability issues are acute. They chiefly relate to the low efficiency of beef cattle in converting natural resources into edible products. Water use, land use, biomass appropriation and greenhouse gas emissions are for example typically higher per unit of edible product in beef systems than in any other livestock systems, even when corrected for nutritional quality. This particularly causes environmental pressure when production systems are specialized towards the delivery of edible products, in large volumes. The paper discusses environmental challenges at global level, recognizing the large diversity of systems. Beef production is faced with a range of additional sustainability challenges, such as changing consumer perceptions, resilience to climate change, animal health and inequities in access to land and water resources. Entry-points for environmental sustainability improvement are discussed within this broader development context. PMID:26117397

  7. Secrecy vs. the need for ecological information: challenges to environmental activism in Russia.

    PubMed

    Jandl, T

    1998-01-01

    This article identifies the lessons learned from the Nikitin case study in Russia. The Nikitin case involves the analysis of sources of radioactive contamination in several Russian counties and in the Russian Northern Fleet. Norway was interested in the issue due to proximity to the storage sites. The issue involved national security and environmental protection. It was learned that mixing national security issues with environmental issues offers dangerous and multiple challenges. Environmental groups must build relationships with a wide audience. International security policy must include the issues of globalization of trade and the spread of environmental problems into the global commons (oceans and atmosphere). The risk of an environmentally dangerous accident as a consequence of Cold War activities is greater than the risk of nuclear war. Secrecy in military affairs is not justified when there is inadequate storage of nuclear weapons and contaminated materials. In Russia, the concern is great due to their economic transition and shortages of funds for even the most basic needs, which excludes nuclear waste clean up. The Bellona Foundation studied the extent of nuclear pollution from military nuclear reactors in the Kola peninsula of northwest Russia, in 1994 and 1996. Russian security police arrested one of the report authors for alleged national security violations. A valuable lesson learned was that local Russian environmental groups needed international support. The military nuclear complex poses an enormous hazard. Limiting inspections is an unacceptable national security risk. The new Russian law on state secrets is too broad. PMID:12321718

  8. Spacecraft Water Monitoring: Adapting to an Era of Emerging Scientific Challenges

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McCoy, J. Torin

    2009-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation reviews spacecraft water monitoring, and the scientific challenges associated with spacecraft water quality. The contents include: 1) Spacecraft Water 101; 2) Paradigm Shift; and 3) Technology Needs.

  9. [Elderly patients in emergency departments, the challenges of assessment on arrival].

    PubMed

    Aïm, Jean-Luc

    2013-01-01

    The proportion of elderly patients is increasing in emergency departments. The assessment phase on arrival is fundamental and determines the future orientation of the patient.The objectives are to identify the "fragile" patient, to assess the pain in an adapted manner, to make the patient autonomous and to gather objective signs which are sometimes masked by aspecific reasons for the patient having been brought to the emergency department. Assessment tools and practice guidelines, adapted to this section of the population, exist, have been tested and must be generalised. Moreover, working in vertically-integrated pathways must be developed. It is important that the elderly patient is managed in a specific way in emergency departments, in the shortest time possible. PMID:23951870

  10. The genetic and environmental etiology of antisocial behavior from childhood to emerging adulthood.

    PubMed

    Tuvblad, Catherine; Narusyte, Jurgita; Grann, Martin; Sarnecki, Jerzy; Lichtenstein, Paul

    2011-09-01

    Previous research suggests that both genetic and environmental influences are important for antisocial behavior across the life span, even though the prevalence and incidence of antisocial behavior varies considerably across ages. However, little is known of how genetic and environmental effects influence the development of antisocial behavior. A total of 2,600 male and female twins from the population-based Swedish Twin Registry were included in the present study. Antisocial behavior was measured on four occasions, when twins were 8-9, 13-14, 16-17, and 19-20 years old. Longitudinal analyses of the data were conducted using structural equation modeling. The stability of antisocial behavior over time was explained by a common latent persistent antisocial behavior factor. A common genetic influence accounted for 67% of the total variance in this latent factor, the shared environment explained 26%, and the remaining 7% was due to the non-shared environment. Significant age-specific shared environmental factors were found at ages 13-14 years, suggesting that common experiences (e.g., peers) are important for antisocial behavior at this age. Results from this study show that genetic as well as shared environmental influences are important in antisocial behavior that persists from childhood to emerging adulthood. PMID:21431322

  11. CDC Grand Rounds: Addressing Preparedness Challenges for Children in Public Health Emergencies.

    PubMed

    Hinton, Cynthia F; Griese, Stephanie E; Anderson, Michael R; Chernak, Esther; Peacock, Georgina; Thorpe, Phoebe G; Lurie, Nicole

    2015-01-01

    Recent public health emergencies including Hurricane Katrina (2005), the influenza H1N1 pandemic (2009), and the Ebola virus disease outbreak in West Africa (2014–2015) have demonstrated the importance of multiple-level emergency planning and response. An effective response requires integrating coordinated contributions from community-based health care providers, regional health care coalitions, state and local health departments, and federal agency initiatives. This is especially important when planning for the needs of children, who make up 23% of the U.S. population (1) and have unique needs that require unique planning strategies. PMID:26356838

  12. Environmental challenges threatening the growth of urban agriculture in the United States.

    PubMed

    Wortman, Sam E; Lovell, Sarah Taylor

    2013-09-01

    Urban agriculture, though often difficult to define, is an emerging sector of local food economies in the United States. Although urban and agricultural landscapes are often integrated in countries around the world, the establishment of mid- to large-scale food production in the U.S. urban ecosystem is a relatively new development. Many of the urban agricultural projects in the United States have emerged from social movements and nonprofit organizations focused on urban renewal, education, job training, community development, and sustainability initiatives. Although these social initiatives have traction, critical knowledge gaps exist regarding the science of food production in urban ecosystems. Developing a science-based approach to urban agriculture is essential to the economic and environmental sustainability of the movement. This paper reviews abiotic environmental factors influencing urban cropping systems, including soil contamination and remediation; atmospheric pollutants and altered climatic conditions; and water management, sources, and safety. This review paper seeks to characterize the limited state of the science on urban agricultural systems and identify future research questions most relevant to urban farmers, land-use planners, and environmental consultants. PMID:24216408

  13. Linguistic and Cultural Challenges in Communication and Translation in US-Sponsored HIV Prevention Research in Emerging Economies

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Linguistic and cultural differences can impede comprehension among potential research participants during the informed consent process, but how researchers and IRBs respond to these challenges in practice is unclear. We conducted in-depth interviews with 15 researchers, research ethics committee (REC) chairs and members from 8 different countries with emerging economies, involved in HIV-related research sponsored by HIV Prevention Trials Network (HPTN), regarding the ethical and regulatory challenges they face in this regard. In the interviews, problems with translating study materials often arose as major concerns. Four sets of challenges were identified concerning linguistic and cultural translations of informed consent documents and other study materials, related to the: (1) context, (2) process, (3) content and (4) translation of these documents. Host country contextual issues included low literacy rates, education (e.g., documents may need to be written below 5th grade reading level), and experiences with research, and different views of written documentation. Certain terms and concepts may not exist in other languages, or have additional connotations that back translations do not always reveal. Challenges arise because of not only the content of word-for-word, literal translation, but the linguistic form of the language, such as tone (e.g., appropriate forms of politeness vs. legalese, seen as harsh), syntax, manner of questions posed, and the concept of the consent); and the contexts of use affect meaning. Problems also emerged in bilateral communications – US IRBs may misunderstand local practices, or communicate insufficiently the reasons for their decisions to foreign RECs. In sum, these data highlight several challenges that have received little, if any, attention in past literature on translation of informed consent and study materials, and have crucial implications for improving practice, education, research and policy, suggesting several strategies

  14. Linguistic and Cultural Challenges in Communication and Translation in US-Sponsored HIV Prevention Research in Emerging Economies.

    PubMed

    Hanrahan, Donna; Sexton, Patrina; Hui, Katrina; Teitcher, Jennifer; Sugarman, Jeremy; London, Alex John; Barnes, Mark; Purpura, James; Klitzman, Robert

    2015-01-01

    Linguistic and cultural differences can impede comprehension among potential research participants during the informed consent process, but how researchers and IRBs respond to these challenges in practice is unclear. We conducted in-depth interviews with 15 researchers, research ethics committee (REC) chairs and members from 8 different countries with emerging economies, involved in HIV-related research sponsored by HIV Prevention Trials Network (HPTN), regarding the ethical and regulatory challenges they face in this regard. In the interviews, problems with translating study materials often arose as major concerns. Four sets of challenges were identified concerning linguistic and cultural translations of informed consent documents and other study materials, related to the: (1) context, (2) process, (3) content and (4) translation of these documents. Host country contextual issues included low literacy rates, education (e.g., documents may need to be written below 5th grade reading level), and experiences with research, and different views of written documentation. Certain terms and concepts may not exist in other languages, or have additional connotations that back translations do not always reveal. Challenges arise because of not only the content of word-for-word, literal translation, but the linguistic form of the language, such as tone (e.g., appropriate forms of politeness vs. legalese, seen as harsh), syntax, manner of questions posed, and the concept of the consent); and the contexts of use affect meaning. Problems also emerged in bilateral communications--US IRBs may misunderstand local practices, or communicate insufficiently the reasons for their decisions to foreign RECs. In sum, these data highlight several challenges that have received little, if any, attention in past literature on translation of informed consent and study materials, and have crucial implications for improving practice, education, research and policy, suggesting several strategies

  15. The Complexity and Challenges of the ICD-9-CM to ICD-10-CM Transition in Emergency Departments

    PubMed Central

    Krive, Jacob; Patel, Mahatkumar; Gehm, Lisa; Mackey, Mark; Kulstad, Erik; Li, Jianrong ‘John’; Lussier, Yves A.; Boyd, Andrew D.

    2015-01-01

    Beginning October 2015, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will require medical providers to utilize the vastly expanded ICD-10-CM system. Despite wide availability of information and mapping tools for the next generation of the ICD classification system, some of the challenges associated with transition from ICD-9-CM to ICD-10-CM are not well understood. To quantify the challenges faced by emergency physicians, we analyzed a subset of a 2010 Illinois Medicaid database of emergency department ICD-9-CM codes, seeking to determine the accuracy of existing mapping tools in order to better prepare emergency physicians for the change to the expanded ICD-10-CM system. We found that 27% of 1,830 codes represented convoluted multidirectional mappings. We then analyzed the convoluted transitions and found 8% of total visit encounters (23% of the convoluted transitions) were clinically incorrect. The ambiguity and inaccuracy of these mappings may impact the work flow associated with the translation process and affect the potential mapping between ICD codes and CPT (Current Procedural Codes) codes, which determine physician reimbursement. PMID:25863652

  16. Leptospirosis in American Samoa 2010: epidemiology, environmental drivers, and the management of emergence.

    PubMed

    Lau, Colleen L; Dobson, Annette J; Smythe, Lee D; Fearnley, Emily J; Skelly, Chris; Clements, Archie C A; Craig, Scott B; Fuimaono, Saipale D; Weinstein, Philip

    2012-02-01

    Leptospirosis has recently been reported as an emerging disease worldwide, and a seroprevalence study was undertaken in American Samoa to better understand the drivers of transmission. Antibodies indicative of previous exposure to leptospirosis were found in 15.5% of 807 participants, predominantly against three serovars that were not previously known to occur in American Samoa. Questionnaires and geographic information systems data were used to assess behavioral factors and environmental determinants of disease transmission, and logistic regression was used to identify factors associated with infection. Many statistically significant factors were consistent with previous studies, but we also showed a significant association with living at lower altitudes (odds ratio [OR] = 1.53, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.03-2.28), and having higher numbers of piggeries around the home (OR = 2.63, 95% CI: 1.52-4.40). Our findings support a multifaceted approach to combating the emergence of leptospirosis, including modification of individual behavior, but importantly also managing the evolving environmental drivers of risk. PMID:22302868

  17. Leptospirosis in American Samoa 2010: Epidemiology, Environmental Drivers, and the Management of Emergence

    PubMed Central

    Lau, Colleen L.; Dobson, Annette J.; Smythe, Lee D.; Fearnley, Emily J.; Skelly, Chris; Clements, Archie C. A.; Craig, Scott B.; Fuimaono, Saipale D.; Weinstein, Philip

    2012-01-01

    Leptospirosis has recently been reported as an emerging disease worldwide, and a seroprevalence study was undertaken in American Samoa to better understand the drivers of transmission. Antibodies indicative of previous exposure to leptospirosis were found in 15.5% of 807 participants, predominantly against three serovars that were not previously known to occur in American Samoa. Questionnaires and geographic information systems data were used to assess behavioral factors and environmental determinants of disease transmission, and logistic regression was used to identify factors associated with infection. Many statistically significant factors were consistent with previous studies, but we also showed a significant association with living at lower altitudes (odds ratio [OR] = 1.53, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.03–2.28), and having higher numbers of piggeries around the home (OR = 2.63, 95% CI: 1.52–4.40). Our findings support a multifaceted approach to combating the emergence of leptospirosis, including modification of individual behavior, but importantly also managing the evolving environmental drivers of risk. PMID:22302868

  18. A web-based survey of the motivations and challenges faced by emerging researchers in the chiropractic profession

    PubMed Central

    de Luca, Katie; Tuchin, Peter; Bonello, Rod

    2015-01-01

    Objective To investigate the motivations, challenges and perceptions of the educational environment of emerging researchers in chiropractic. Methods A descriptive web-based survey of higher-degree chiropractic research students was performed between October and November 2013. The survey consisted of open and closed questions and the Dundee Ready Education Environment Measure. Results Twenty-two students currently enrolled in a higher-degree research program participated. Students were most commonly enrolled in a doctor of philosophy program at a part-time rate. Motivations of research were desire to improve the clinical care aspects of chiropractic for the public and belief that chiropractic research is lacking. The greatest challenges were the negative attitudes towards chiropractic, finding enough time to do everything required, and feelings of isolation. The higher-degree research educational environment was perceived to be more positive than negative, with the stimulating nature of research a positive feature. A negative feature of the educational environment was poor undergraduate preparation for higher-degree research. Conclusion This study is the first study to describe higher-degree chiropractic research students. Primary motivations included building research, while challenges included not only negative attitudes toward the chiropractic profession but also negative attitudes toward researchers from within the profession. The higher-degree research educational environment was perceived to be positive. By acknowledging the issues that surround emerging researchers in chiropractic, the profession is better placed to foster academics and build research capacity. PMID:26090697

  19. The Continuing Child Protection Emergency: A Challenge to the Nation. Third Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    United States Advisory Board on Child Abuse and Neglect, Washington, DC.

    Three years after the release of its original report (1990), the U.S. Advisory Board on Child Abuse and Neglect reports that the child protection emergency has clearly deepened in all parts of the nation. Reports of child abuse and neglect have continued to climb; an inordinate number of children continue to die at the hands of caretakers; and…

  20. The Emergence of Doctoral Programmes in the Colombian Higher Education System: Trends and Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Acosta, Orlando; Celis, Jorge

    2014-01-01

    The international literature contains few formal analyses of the state of Colombian higher education and its most critical issues. This article systematically and comparatively analyzes the emergence of Colombian doctoral programmes within a national and international context. It shows that, while Colombia has experienced a significant growth in…

  1. Biopsychosocial Health Care Needs at the Emergency Room: Challenge of Complexity

    PubMed Central

    Matzer, Franziska; Wisiak, Ursula V.; Graninger, Monika; Söllner, Wolfgang; Stilling, Hans Peter; Glawischnig-Goschnik, Monika; Lueger, Andreas; Fazekas, Christian

    2012-01-01

    Background In an emergency room of internal medicine, triage and treatment of patients deserve first priority. However, biopsychosocial case complexity may also affect patient health outcome but has not yet been explored in this setting. Therefore, the aims of the study are (1) to estimate prevalence rates of complex patients in the emergency room (ER), (2) to describe biopsychosocial complexity in this population and (3) to evaluate possible correlations between patient profiles regarding case complexity and further clinical treatment. Methods During a study period of one week, all patients of an emergency room of internal medicine who were triaged to Manchester levels three to five were invited to participate in the study. Biopsychosocial case complexity was assessed by the INTERMED method. Psychosocial interventions were evaluated based on all documented interventions and recommendations given at the emergency room and during inpatient treatment. Results Study participants consisted of 167 patients with a subgroup of 19% (n = 32) receiving subsequent inpatient-treatment at the department. High biopsychosocial case complexity was found in 12% (n = 20) of the total sample (INTERMED score >20). This finding was paralleled by a cluster analysis suggesting three clusters with one highly complex patient group of 14%. These highly complex patients differed significantly from the other clusters as they had visited the emergency room more often within the last year and lived alone more frequently. In addition, admission rates were highest in this group. During ER treatment and subsequent inpatient treatment, 21% of highly complex patients received interventions addressing psychosocial factors as compared to 6% and 7%, respectively, in the other clusters. Conclusions A standardized screening of biopsychosocial case complexity among ‘frequent utilizers’ of the ER would be helpful to detect specific multidisciplinary health care needs among this particularly

  2. Management of maxillofacial trauma in emergency: An update of challenges and controversies

    PubMed Central

    Jose, Anson; Nagori, Shakil Ahmed; Agarwal, Bhaskar; Bhutia, Ongkila; Roychoudhury, Ajoy

    2016-01-01

    Trauma management has evolved significantly in the past few decades thereby reducing mortality in the golden hour. However, challenges remain, and one such area is maxillofacial injuries in a polytrauma patient. Severe injuries to the maxillofacial region can complicate the early management of a trauma patient owing to the regions proximity to the brain, cervical spine, and airway. The usual techniques of airway breathing and circulation (ABC) management are often modified or supplemented with other methods in case of maxillofacial injuries. Such modifications have their own challenges and pitfalls in an already difficult situation. PMID:27162439

  3. Management of maxillofacial trauma in emergency: An update of challenges and controversies.

    PubMed

    Jose, Anson; Nagori, Shakil Ahmed; Agarwal, Bhaskar; Bhutia, Ongkila; Roychoudhury, Ajoy

    2016-01-01

    Trauma management has evolved significantly in the past few decades thereby reducing mortality in the golden hour. However, challenges remain, and one such area is maxillofacial injuries in a polytrauma patient. Severe injuries to the maxillofacial region can complicate the early management of a trauma patient owing to the regions proximity to the brain, cervical spine, and airway. The usual techniques of airway breathing and circulation (ABC) management are often modified or supplemented with other methods in case of maxillofacial injuries. Such modifications have their own challenges and pitfalls in an already difficult situation. PMID:27162439

  4. Proceedings of the Summit on Environmental Challenges to Reproductive Health and Fertility: Executive Summary

    PubMed Central

    Woodruff, Tracey J.; Carlson, Alison; Schwartz, Jackie M.; Giudice, Linda C.

    2008-01-01

    The 2007 Summit on “Environmental Challenges to Reproductive Health and Fertility” convened scientists, health care professionals, community groups, political representatives and the media to hear presentations on the impact of environmental contaminants on reproductive health and fertility and to discuss opportunities to improve health through research, education, communication and policy. Environmental reproductive health focuses on exposures to environmental contaminants, particularly during critical periods of development, and their potential effects on future reproductive health, including conception, fertility, pregnancy, adolescent development and adult health. Approximately 87,000 chemical substances are registered for use in commerce in the US, with ubiquitous human exposures to environmental contaminants in air, water, food and consumer products. Exposures during critical windows of susceptibility may result in adverse effects with lifelong and even intergenerational health impacts. Effects can include impaired development and function of the reproductive tract and permanently altered gene expression, leading to metabolic and hormonal disorders, reduced fertility and fecundity and illnesses such as testicular, prostate, uterine and cervical cancers later in life. This executive summary reviews effects of pre- and post-natal exposures on male and female reproductive health and provides a series of recommendations for advancing the field in the areas of research, policy, health care and community action. PMID:18275883

  5. Rapid ecosystem change challenges the adaptive capacity of Local Environmental Knowledge

    PubMed Central

    Fernández-Llamazares, Álvaro; Díaz-Reviriego, Isabel; Luz, Ana C.; Cabeza, Mar; Pyhälä, Aili; Reyes-García, Victoria

    2015-01-01

    The use of Local Environmental Knowledge has been considered as an important strategy for adaptive management in the face of Global Environmental Change. However, the unprecedented rates at which global change occurs may pose a challenge to the adaptive capacity of local knowledge systems. In this paper, we use the concept of the shifting baseline syndrome to examine the limits in the adaptive capacity of the local knowledge of an indigenous society facing rapid ecosystem change. We conducted semi-structured interviews regarding perceptions of change in wildlife populations and in intergenerational transmission of knowledge amongst the Tsimane’, a group of hunter-gatherers of Bolivian Amazonia (n = 300 adults in 13 villages). We found that the natural baseline against which the Tsimane’ measure ecosystem changes might be shifting with every generation as a result of (a) age-related differences in the perception of change and (b) a decrease in the intergenerational sharing of environmental knowledge. Such findings suggest that local knowledge systems might not change at a rate quick enough to adapt to conditions of rapid ecosystem change, hence potentially compromising the adaptive success of the entire social-ecological system. With the current pace of Global Environmental Change, widening the gap between the temporal rates of on-going ecosystem change and the timescale needed for local knowledge systems to adjust to change, efforts to tackle the shifting baseline syndrome are urgent and critical for those who aim to use Local Environmental Knowledge as a tool for adaptive management. PMID:26097291

  6. Co-Ordinating Education during Emergencies and Reconstruction: Challenges and Responsibilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sommers, Marc

    2004-01-01

    While co-ordination is essentially a method of getting institutions to work together, it is clearly not synonymous with togetherness. Undercurrents of suspicion and distrust between individuals and institutional actors can affect important relationships and give rise to enduring misunderstandings and perplexing challenges. Turf battles involving…

  7. Capacity Building: Reshaping Urban Community College Resources in Response to Emerging Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lassiter, Wright L., Jr.

    2013-01-01

    Urban community colleges face a myriad of convergent challenges, including the loss of state funding and local property tax support, increased demands for better performance and greater accountability, and record-high enrollment by the most underprepared students in higher education. Sometimes to make sense of it all, it helps to think of an onion.

  8. A Case Study of Emerging Challenges and Reflections on Internationalization of Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jiang, Nan; Carpenter, Victoria

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this research was to examine challenges and issues of higher education (HE) internationalization. A qualitative study was conducted at a UK university. A total of 20 interviewees from the case study institution participated in this research. Content analysis, critical discourse analysis and categorization of meaning were adopted as…

  9. A two-stage optimization model for emergency material reserve layout planning under uncertainty in response to environmental accidents.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jie; Guo, Liang; Jiang, Jiping; Jiang, Dexun; Liu, Rentao; Wang, Peng

    2016-06-01

    In the emergency management relevant to pollution accidents, efficiency emergency rescues can be deeply influenced by a reasonable assignment of the available emergency materials to the related risk sources. In this study, a two-stage optimization framework is developed for emergency material reserve layout planning under uncertainty to identify material warehouse locations and emergency material reserve schemes in pre-accident phase coping with potential environmental accidents. This framework is based on an integration of Hierarchical clustering analysis - improved center of gravity (HCA-ICG) model and material warehouse location - emergency material allocation (MWL-EMA) model. First, decision alternatives are generated using HCA-ICG to identify newly-built emergency material warehouses for risk sources which cannot be satisfied by existing ones with a time-effective manner. Second, emergency material reserve planning is obtained using MWL-EMA to make emergency materials be prepared in advance with a cost-effective manner. The optimization framework is then applied to emergency management system planning in Jiangsu province, China. The results demonstrate that the developed framework not only could facilitate material warehouse selection but also effectively provide emergency material for emergency operations in a quick response. PMID:26897572

  10. [Emergency medical services for the elderly: present fact and future challenge].

    PubMed

    Aruga, Yuichiro

    2013-06-01

    The Tokyo Fire Department (TFD) ambulance units are transporting more people than ever before with elderly patients on the increase. The TFD then set up the Emergency Telephone Consultation Center in 2007 to help citizens properly use EMS services, asking non-emergency cases to go to the hospital by themselves or sending the ambulance to serious cases. Transportation of all "home patients" (receiving medical services at home, not in the hospital) by fire department ambulances would leave really serious patients behind. Consequently, it is important to make the most of private sector ambulances and hospital ones. For community life safety, making the most of local resources, as well as the fire department-hospital cooperation, is much more needed now. PMID:23855196

  11. Digital breast tomosynthesis and the challenges of implementing an emerging breast cancer screening technology into clinical practice.

    PubMed

    Lee, Christoph I; Lehman, Constance D

    2013-12-01

    Emerging imaging technologies, including digital breast tomosynthesis, have the potential to transform breast cancer screening. However, the rapid adoption of these new technologies outpaces the evidence of their clinical and cost-effectiveness. The authors describe the forces driving the rapid diffusion of tomosynthesis into clinical practice, comparing it with the rapid diffusion of digital mammography shortly after its introduction. They outline the potential positive and negative effects that adoption can have on imaging workflow and describe the practice management challenges when incorporating tomosynthesis. The authors also provide recommendations for collecting evidence supporting the development of policies and best practices. PMID:24295940

  12. Grand Challenges for Biological and Environmental Research: A Long-Term Vision

    SciTech Connect

    Arkin, A.; Baliga, N.; Braam, J.; Church, G.; Collins, J; Cottingham, R.; Ecker, J.; Gerstein, M.; Gilna, P.; Greenberg, J.; Handelsman, J.; Hubbard, S.; Joachimiak, A.; Liao, J.; Looger, L.; Meyerowitz, E.; Mjolness, E.; Petsko, G.; Sayler, G.; Simpson, M.; Stacey, G.; Sussman, M.; Tiedje, J.; Bader, D.; Cessi, P.; Collins, W.; Denning, S.; Dickinson, R.; Easterling, D.; Edmonds, J.; Feddema, J.; Field, C.; Fridlind, A.; Fung, I.; Held, I.; Jackson, R.; Janetos, A.; Large, W.; Leinen, M.; Leung, R.; Long, S.; Mace, G.; Masiello, C.; Meehl, G.; Ort, D.; Otto-Bliesner, B.; Penner, J.; Prather, M.; Randall, D.; Rasch, P.; Schneider, E.; Shugart, H.; Thornton, P.; Washington, W.; Wildung, R.; Wiscombe, W.; Zak, D.; Zhang, M.; Bielicki, J.; Buford, M.; Cleland, E.; Dale, V.; Duke, C.; Ehleringer, J.; Hecht, A.; Kammen, D.; Marland, G.; Pataki, D.; Riley, M. Robertson, P.; Hubbard, S.

    2010-12-01

    The interactions and feedbacks among plants, animals, microbes, humans, and the environment ultimately form the world in which we live. This world is now facing challenges from a growing and increasingly affluent human population whose numbers and lifestyles are driving ever greater energy demand and impacting climate. These and other contributing factors will make energy and climate sustainability extremely difficult to achieve over the 20-year time horizon that is the focus of this report. Despite these severe challenges, there is optimism that deeper understanding of our environment will enable us to mitigate detrimental effects, while also harnessing biological and climate systems to ensure a sustainable energy future. This effort is advanced by scientific inquiries in the fields of atmospheric chemistry and physics, biology, ecology, and subsurface science - all made possible by computing. The Office of Biological and Environmental Research (BER) within the Department of Energy's (DOE) Office of Science has a long history of bringing together researchers from different disciplines to address critical national needs in determining the biological and environmental impacts of energy production and use, characterizing the interplay of climate and energy, and collaborating with other agencies and DOE programs to improve the world's most powerful climate models. BER science focuses on three distinct areas: (1) What are the roles of Earth system components (atmosphere, land, oceans, sea ice, and the biosphere) in determining climate? (2) How is the information stored in a genome translated into microbial, plant, and ecosystem processes that influence biofuel production, climate feedbacks, and the natural cycling of carbon? (3) What are the biological, geochemical, and physical forces that govern the behavior of Earth's subsurface environment? Ultimately, the goal of BER science is to support experimentation and modeling that can reliably predict the outcomes and

  13. Applying behavioral science to workforce challenges in the public health emergency preparedness system.

    PubMed

    McCabe, O Lee; DiClemente, Carlo C; Links, Jonathan M

    2012-01-01

    When disasters and other broad-scale public health emergencies occur in the United States, they often reveal flaws in the pre-event preparedness of those individuals and agencies charged with responsibility for emergency response and recovery activities. A significant contributor to this problem is the unwillingness of some public health workers to participate in the requisite planning, training, and response activities to ensure quality preparedness. The thesis of this article is that there are numerous, empirically supported models of behavior change that hold potential for motivating role-appropriate behavior in public health professionals. The models that are highlighted here for consideration and prospective adaptation to the public health emergency preparedness system (PHEPS) are the Transtheoretical Model of Intentional Behavior Change (TTM) and Motivational Interviewing (MI). Core concepts in TTM and MI are described, and specific examples are offered to illustrate the relevance of the frameworks for understanding and ameliorating PHEPS-based workforce problems. Finally, the requisite steps are described to ensure the readiness of organizations to support the implementation of the ideas proposed. PMID:22916453

  14. Stakeholder Interaction in Participatory Land Restoration in Iceland: Environmental Officers' Challenges and Strategies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berglund, Brita; Hallgren, Lars; Aradóttir, Ása L.

    2015-08-01

    Participatory approaches involve stakeholder interaction but environmental agency employees engaged in participatory undertakings often lack training for interaction tasks. This study explored how district officers at the Soil Conservation Service of Iceland (SCSI) experienced and dealt with stakeholder interaction in participatory land restoration. We made semi-structured interviews with all district officers with at least 1-year experience; seven in total. A thematic content analysis revealed five challenges facing the officers in their interaction activities and seven strategies that they used to deal with these challenges. The core challenge was to establish and maintain contacts with farmers and other stakeholders as it enabled the SCSI to support and influence their land restoration practices. Other challenges were to: accomplish SCSI's objectives; represent the SCSI and the government; have adequate skills, knowledge, and background; and deal with one's own emotions. Four of the strategies seemed to promote collaboration: create win-win scenarios; "go local"; direct and positive communication; and motivation and knowledge sharing. The other strategies: supportive district officer team; self-reliance and personal background; and self-control supported the officers in their interaction tasks. Factors undermining their collaboration efforts included insufficient time and other resources, an unsupportive organizational culture and a legal duty to assess the condition of vegetation cover on farmland. Increased resource allocation to the SCSI's local operations, more attention to emotional issues, and efforts to develop a more flexible and learning organizational culture that supports collaboration could counteract these factors.

  15. Stakeholder Interaction in Participatory Land Restoration in Iceland: Environmental Officers' Challenges and Strategies.

    PubMed

    Berglund, Brita; Hallgren, Lars; Aradóttir, Ása L

    2015-08-01

    Participatory approaches involve stakeholder interaction but environmental agency employees engaged in participatory undertakings often lack training for interaction tasks. This study explored how district officers at the Soil Conservation Service of Iceland (SCSI) experienced and dealt with stakeholder interaction in participatory land restoration. We made semi-structured interviews with all district officers with at least 1-year experience; seven in total. A thematic content analysis revealed five challenges facing the officers in their interaction activities and seven strategies that they used to deal with these challenges. The core challenge was to establish and maintain contacts with farmers and other stakeholders as it enabled the SCSI to support and influence their land restoration practices. Other challenges were to: accomplish SCSI's objectives; represent the SCSI and the government; have adequate skills, knowledge, and background; and deal with one's own emotions. Four of the strategies seemed to promote collaboration: create win-win scenarios; "go local"; direct and positive communication; and motivation and knowledge sharing. The other strategies: supportive district officer team; self-reliance and personal background; and self-control supported the officers in their interaction tasks. Factors undermining their collaboration efforts included insufficient time and other resources, an unsupportive organizational culture and a legal duty to assess the condition of vegetation cover on farmland. Increased resource allocation to the SCSI's local operations, more attention to emotional issues, and efforts to develop a more flexible and learning organizational culture that supports collaboration could counteract these factors. PMID:25904467

  16. Challenges in assessing the environmental fate and exposure of nano silver

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whiteley, Cherrie M.; Dalla Valle, Matteo; Jones, Kevin C.; Sweetman, Andy J.

    2011-07-01

    There are significant challenges in assessing the fate and exposure of nano particles (NPs) owing to the lack of information on their use and potential pathways and sinks in the environment. This paper discusses these issues using nanosilver as a case study. The approach taken is to assess the production of nanosilver, the range of products that utilise its properties, potential environmental release pathways and subsequent fate. Estimates of UK nanosilver released into the environment have been made and sewage sludge identified as an important receiving compartment. This work aims to highlight the on-going challenges faced when assessing NPs in the environment. Using nanosilver as an example, difficulties in assessing production, use and release are discussed. The study also recommends a potential approach to assess the fate and behaviour assessment of nanosilver in the environment.

  17. Contribution to regulatory science and a next challenge of the Japanese Environmental Mutagen Society (JEMS).

    PubMed

    Uno, Yoshifumi

    2016-01-01

    Many members of The Japanese Environmental Mutagen Society (JEMS) have significantly contributed to guidelines on chemical genotoxicity. The guidelines have been useful for the hazard identification and risk assessment of genotoxic chemicals. However, risk assessors and developers of drugs and other commercial products might eliminate beneficial chemicals from further development simply based on positive results of genotoxicity testing. Experts in the field of genotoxicity should better characterize the biological significance of genotoxicants and more correctly assess human risk. I hope that one of the next challenges undertaken by JEMS will be to assess the human risk of genotoxic chemicals more correctly based on the precise analysis of their mechanisms of action. PMID:27588156

  18. Identifying barriers and catalysts to fostering pro-environmental behavior: opportunities and challenges for community psychology.

    PubMed

    Quimby, Christine C; Angelique, Holly

    2011-06-01

    In this paper, we report on an exploratory study of perceived barriers and catalysts to increasing pro-environmental behavior among people associated with the environmental movement. Perceived barriers include time, money, low efficacy and hopelessness. Catalysts focus on changing social norms, especially through education and institutional support. We discuss the tragedy of the commons and free-riding as impediments to change. We use this study as an entryway to hypothesize opportunities and challenges that community psychologists face in motivating and supporting actions to reduce the impact of global climate change. We provide examples of how community psychologists can foster these changes. In short, we argue that community psychology is well positioned to take a leading role in the fight for a carbon neutral future. PMID:21203832

  19. Scientific challenges and opportunities in developing novel vaccines for the emerging and developing markets

    PubMed Central

    Kochhar, Sonali

    2013-01-01

    Vaccines have had a major role in enhancing the quality of life and increasing life expectancy. Despite these successes and the development of new vaccine technologies, there remain multiple infectious diseases including AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis that require effective prophylactic vaccines. New and traditional technologies have a role in the development and delivery of the new vaccine candidates. The scientific challenges, opportunities and funding models for developing vaccines for low resource settings are highlighted here. PMID:23322007

  20. Towards the prevention of lead exposure in South Africa: contemporary and emerging challenges.

    PubMed

    Mathee, Angela

    2014-12-01

    The prevention of lead exposure continues to constitute a major public health challenge in developed countries. In well-resourced countries major lead exposure reduction interventions have resulted in significant improvements in childhood blood lead distributions. In developing countries on the other hand, while lead exposure and poisoning remain serious public health concerns, a range of prevailing factors and circumstances, such as poverty, a large informal sector, competing public health challenges, low levels of awareness of lead hazards and weak capacity to enforce legislation, contribute to an increase in the scale and intensity of the challenge, and limit the prospects of comparable success in the foreseeable future. This paper collates available information to illustrate that despite some progress, a wide range of sources of lead exist in South Africa, and that certain settings and groups continue to be at high risk of lead exposure. Lead exposure in relation to paint, mining, lead melting in subsistence fishing communities, the consumption of Ayurvedic medicines and food production is described, and discussed with regard to the key factors hindering efforts to prevent lead poisoning and exposure in South Africa and many other developing countries. PMID:25086205

  1. Nonclinical safety testing of biopharmaceuticals--Addressing current challenges of these novel and emerging therapies.

    PubMed

    Brennan, Frank R; Baumann, Andreas; Blaich, Guenter; de Haan, Lolke; Fagg, Rajni; Kiessling, Andrea; Kronenberg, Sven; Locher, Mathias; Milton, Mark; Tibbitts, Jay; Ulrich, Peter; Weir, Lucinda

    2015-10-01

    Non-clinical safety testing of biopharmaceuticals can present significant challenges to human risk assessment with these often innovative and complex drugs. Hot Topics in this field were discussed recently at the 4th Annual European Biosafe General Membership meeting. In this feature article, the presentations and subsequent discussions from the main sessions are summarized. The topics covered include: (i) wanted versus unwanted immune activation, (ii) bi-specific protein scaffolds, (iii) use of Pharmacokinetic (PK)/Pharmacodynamic (PD) data to impact/optimize toxicology study design, (iv) cytokine release and challenges to human translation (v) safety testing of cell and gene therapies including chimeric antigen receptor T (CAR-T) cells and retroviral vectors and (vi) biopharmaceutical development strategies encompassing a range of diverse topics including optimizing entry of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) into the brain, safety testing of therapeutic vaccines, non-clinical testing of biosimilars, infection in toxicology studies with immunomodulators and challenges to human risk assessment, maternal and infant anti-drug antibody (ADA) development and impact in non-human primate (NHP) developmental toxicity studies, and a summary of an NC3Rs workshop on the future vision for non-clinical safety assessment of biopharmaceuticals. PMID:26219199

  2. Public health emergencies and the public health/managed care challenge.

    PubMed

    Rosenbaum, Sara; Skivington, Skip; Praeger, Sandra

    2002-01-01

    The relationship between insurance and public health is an enduring topic in public health policy and practice. Insurers share certain attributes with public health. But public health agencies operate in relation to the entire community that they are empowered by public law to serve and without regard to the insurance status of community residents; on the other hand, insurers (whether managed care or otherwise) are risk-bearing entities whose obligations are contractually defined and limited to enrolled members and sponsors. Public insurers such as Medicare and Medicaid operate under similar constraints. The fundamental characteristics that distinguish managed care-style insurance and public health become particularly evident during periods of public health emergency, when a public health agency's basic obligations to act with speed and flexibility may come face to face with the constraints on available financing that are inherent in the structure of insurance. Because more than 70% of all personal health care in the United States is financed through insurance, public health agencies effectively depend on insurers to finance necessary care and provide essential patient-level data to the public health system. Critical issues of state and federal policy arise in the context of the public health/insurance relations during public health emergencies. These issues focus on coverage and the power to make coverage decisions, as well as the power to define service networks and classify certain data as exempt from public reporting. The extent to which a formal regulatory approach may become necessary is significantly affected by the extent to which private entities themselves respond to the problem with active efforts to redesign their services and operations to include capabilities and accountability in the realm of public health emergency response. PMID:12508505

  3. Review and challenges of policies of environmental protection and sustainable development in China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Kun-Min; Wen, Zong-Guo

    2008-09-01

    China is confronted with the dual task of developing its national economy and protecting its ecological environment. Since the 1980s, China's policies on environmental protection and sustainable development have experienced five changes: (1) progression from the adoption of environmental protection as a basic state policy to the adoption of sustainable development strategy; (2) changing focus from pollution control to ecological conservation equally; (3) shifting from end-of-pipe treatment to source control; (4) moving from point source treatment to regional environmental governance; and (5) a turn away from administrative management-based approaches and towards a legal means and economic instruments-based approach. Since 1992, China has set down sustainable development as a basic national strategy. However, environmental pollution and ecological degradation in China have continued to be serious problems and have inflicted great damage on the economy and quality of life. The beginning of the 21st century is a critical juncture for China's efforts towards sustaining rapid economic development, intensifying environmental protection efforts, and curbing ecological degradation. As the largest developing country, China's policies on environmental protection and sustainable development will be of primary importance not only for China, but also the world. Realizing a completely well-off society by the year 2020 is seen as a crucial task by the Chinese government and an important goal for China's economic development in the new century, however, attaining it would require a four-fold increase over China's year 2000 GDP. Therefore, speeding up economic development is a major mission during the next two decades and doing so will bring great challenges in controlling depletion of natural resources and environmental pollution. By taking a critical look at the development of Chinese environmental policy, we try to determine how best to coordinate the relationship between the

  4. COOP+ project: Promoting the cooperation among international Research Infrastructures to address global environmental challenges.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonet-García, Francisco; Materia, Paola; Kutsch, Werner; de Lucas, Jesús Marco; Tjulin, Anders

    2016-04-01

    During the Anthropocene, mankind will face several global environmental challenges. One of the first and more successful responses provided by Science to these challenges is the collecting of long-term series of biophysical variables in order to improve our knowledge of natural systems. The huge amount of information gathered during the last decades by Research Infrastructures (RIs) has helped to understand the structure and functioning of natural systems at local and regional scales. But how can we address the global cross-scale and cross-disciplinary challenges posed by the global environment change? We believe that it will be necessary to observe, model better and understand the whole biosphere using long term data generated by international RIs. RIs play a key role on many of the last advances and discoveries in science, from the observation of the Higgs Boson at CERN to the exploration of the Universe by the telescopes of the European Southern Observatory in Chile. The scale of complexity, instrumentation, computing resources, technological advances, and also of the investments, and the size of research collaborations, do not have precedents in Science. RIs in environmental field are developing fast, but the corresponding communities need yet to further reflect the need for a wider global collaboration because the challenges to tackle are in essence of global nature. This contribution describes how COOP+ project (EU Horizon 2020 Coordination and Support Action) will promote the cooperation among RIs at a global scale to address global environmental challenges. Our project evolves from the experience of the sucessful FP7 COOPEUS project (see http://www.coopeus.eu), which explored the use and access to data from RIs in environmental research in Europe and USA. The general goal of COOP+ is to strengthen the links and coordination of the ESFRI RIs related to Marine Science (EMSO), Arctic and Atmospheric Research (EISCAT), Carbon Observation (ICOS) and Biodiversity

  5. Laparoscopic Finney pyloroplasty in the emergency setting: first case report in the literature and technical challenges

    PubMed Central

    Athanasopoulos, Panagiotis G.; Hadjittofi, Christopher; Berti, Stefano

    2016-01-01

    Pyloroplasty is currently reserved for emergencies (perforation, bleeding), but may occasionally be performed to treat benign gastric outlet obstruction (GOO). Historically, two techniques are available: the Mikulicz pyloroplasty, by which the pylorus is incised longitudinally and sutured vertically, and the Finney pyloroplasty, by which a U-shaped inverted incision is made in the second part of duodenum (D1–D2), followed by a side-to-side gastroduodenostomy. We report our experience in this single case of laparoscopic Finney pyloroplasty (LFP) performed in the emergency setting for a woman with a perforated duodenal ulcer and severe loss of tissue in D1–D2. Due to the presence of severely inflamed perforation edges and the risk of duodenal narrowing with subsequent GOO, Finney technique was favored over direct ulcer repair. The patient achieved a full postoperative recovery free of complications, with a dynamic oral contrast study demonstrating good gastric evacuation. Review of the current literature revealed no similar cases, as LFP has only been performed in the canine model. Although LFP requires a specific surgical skill-set, we believe it can be effective and feasible in cases of duodenal perforation with significant loss of mural substance. PMID:27294093

  6. Emergent toxins in North Atlantic temperate waters: a challenge for monitoring programs and legislation.

    PubMed

    Silva, Marisa; Pratheepa, Vijaya K; Botana, Luis M; Vasconcelos, Vitor

    2015-03-01

    Harmful Algal Blooms (HAB) are complex to manage due to their intermittent nature and their severe impact on the economy and human health. The conditions which promote HAB have not yet been fully explained, though climate change and anthropogenic intervention are pointed as significant factors. The rise of water temperature, the opening of new sea canals and the introduction of ship ballast waters all contribute to the dispersion and establishment of toxin-producing invasive species that promote the settling of emergent toxins in the food-chain. Tetrodotoxin, ciguatoxin, palytoxin and cyclic imines are commonly reported in warm waters but have also caused poisoning incidents in temperate zones. There is evidence that monitoring for these toxins exclusively in bivalves is simplistic and underestimates the risk to public health, since new vectors have been reported for these toxins and as well for regulated toxins such as PSTs and DSTs. In order to avoid public health impacts, there is a need for adequate monitoring programs, a need for establishing appropriate legislation, and a need for optimizing effective methods of analysis. In this review, we will compile evidence concerning emergent marine toxins and provide data that may indicate the need to restructure the current monitoring programs of HAB. PMID:25785464

  7. Emergent Toxins in North Atlantic Temperate Waters: A Challenge for Monitoring Programs and Legislation

    PubMed Central

    Silva, Marisa; Pratheepa, Vijaya K.; Botana, Luis M.; Vasconcelos, Vitor

    2015-01-01

    Harmful Algal Blooms (HAB) are complex to manage due to their intermittent nature and their severe impact on the economy and human health. The conditions which promote HAB have not yet been fully explained, though climate change and anthropogenic intervention are pointed as significant factors. The rise of water temperature, the opening of new sea canals and the introduction of ship ballast waters all contribute to the dispersion and establishment of toxin-producing invasive species that promote the settling of emergent toxins in the food-chain. Tetrodotoxin, ciguatoxin, palytoxin and cyclic imines are commonly reported in warm waters but have also caused poisoning incidents in temperate zones. There is evidence that monitoring for these toxins exclusively in bivalves is simplistic and underestimates the risk to public health, since new vectors have been reported for these toxins and as well for regulated toxins such as PSTs and DSTs. In order to avoid public health impacts, there is a need for adequate monitoring programs, a need for establishing appropriate legislation, and a need for optimizing effective methods of analysis. In this review, we will compile evidence concerning emergent marine toxins and provide data that may indicate the need to restructure the current monitoring programs of HAB. PMID:25785464

  8. Laparoscopic Finney pyloroplasty in the emergency setting: first case report in the literature and technical challenges.

    PubMed

    Moggia, Elisabetta; Athanasopoulos, Panagiotis G; Hadjittofi, Christopher; Berti, Stefano

    2016-05-01

    Pyloroplasty is currently reserved for emergencies (perforation, bleeding), but may occasionally be performed to treat benign gastric outlet obstruction (GOO). Historically, two techniques are available: the Mikulicz pyloroplasty, by which the pylorus is incised longitudinally and sutured vertically, and the Finney pyloroplasty, by which a U-shaped inverted incision is made in the second part of duodenum (D1-D2), followed by a side-to-side gastroduodenostomy. We report our experience in this single case of laparoscopic Finney pyloroplasty (LFP) performed in the emergency setting for a woman with a perforated duodenal ulcer and severe loss of tissue in D1-D2. Due to the presence of severely inflamed perforation edges and the risk of duodenal narrowing with subsequent GOO, Finney technique was favored over direct ulcer repair. The patient achieved a full postoperative recovery free of complications, with a dynamic oral contrast study demonstrating good gastric evacuation. Review of the current literature revealed no similar cases, as LFP has only been performed in the canine model. Although LFP requires a specific surgical skill-set, we believe it can be effective and feasible in cases of duodenal perforation with significant loss of mural substance. PMID:27294093

  9. [Challenges in the assessment and managment of health risks associated with emerging water micropollutants].

    PubMed

    Levi, Yves

    2009-06-01

    Analytical laboratories can now identify and quantify an impressive number of "new" pollutants present at very low concentrations in water. Nanotechnology products are a new cause for concern. " Emerging " pollutants are defined as substances that were not previously sought or detected (plasticizers, drugs, chlorination byproducts, persistant organic pollutants, ...) and that are now being identified in many continental water resources. The biological actions of these substances, alone and in combination with other more " classical "pollutants, include such effects as endocrine disruption. Contaminants may be present in surface and groundwater resources, may be generated during treatment, and are found in drinking water distribution networks. In industrialized countries, the main source of emerging pollutants for humans is not water, but rather food, cosmetics and air. Urgent measures are needed to protect biodiversity and human health, including quantitative risk assessment, toxicologic studies of xenobiotic mixtures and chronic effects, strategies to protect water resources, technological advances in wastewater treatment, reliable potable water production, and new inert materials for transport and storage. Good sanitation and safe tap water are major contributors to human health and well-being Major efforts and investments are needed, based on rigorous, objective assessments of risks for the environment and public health. PMID:20120163

  10. Nanobonding: A key technology for emerging applications in health and environmental sciences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Howlader, Matiar M. R.; Deen, M. Jamal; Suga, Tadatomo

    2015-03-01

    In this paper, surface-activation-based nanobonding technology and its applications are described. This bonding technology allows for the integration of electronic, photonic, fluidic and mechanical components into small form-factor systems for emerging sensing and imaging applications in health and environmental sciences. Here, we describe four different nanobonding techniques that have been used for the integration of various substrates — silicon, gallium arsenide, glass, and gold. We use these substrates to create electronic (silicon), photonic (silicon and gallium arsenide), microelectromechanical (glass and silicon), and fluidic (silicon and glass) components for biosensing and bioimaging systems being developed. Our nanobonding technologies provide void-free, strong, and nanometer scale bonding at room temperature or at low temperatures (<200 °C), and do not require chemicals, adhesives, or high external pressure. The interfaces of the nanobonded materials in ultra-high vacuum and in air correspond to covalent bonds, and hydrogen or hydroxyl bonds, respectively.

  11. Challenger

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Allday, Jonathan

    2002-01-01

    The events that led to the spectacular destruction of the Space Shuttle "Challenger" in 1986 are detailed here. They show how NASA should have heeded engineers' worries over materials problems resulting from a launch in cold weather. Suggestions are made of how pupils could also learn from this tragedy. (Contains 4 figures and 2 footnotes.)

  12. Challenger

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allday, Jonathan

    2002-09-01

    The events that led to the spectacular destruction of the Space Shuttle Challenger in 1986 are detailed here. They show how NASA should have heeded engineers' worries over materials problems resulting from a launch in cold weather. Suggestions are made of how pupils could also learn from this tragedy.

  13. Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moore, Thomas R.

    1975-01-01

    Domestic and international challenges facing the National Society for the Prevention of Blindness are discussed; and U.S. and Russian programs in testing and correcting children's vision, developing eye safety programs in agriculture and industry, and disseminating information concerning the detection and treatment of cataracts are compared. (SB)

  14. Pediatric cardiac surgery in low- and middle-income countries or emerging economies: a continuing challenge.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Nguyenvu; Pezzella, A Thomas

    2015-04-01

    A number of recent publications, addresses, seminars, and conferences have addressed the global backlog and increasing incidence of both congenital and acquired cardiac diseases in children, with reference to early and delayed recognition, late referral, availability of and access to services, costs, risks, databases, and early and long-term results and follow-up. A variety of proposals, recommendations, and projects have been outlined and documented. The ultimate goal of these endeavors is to increase the quality and quantity of pediatric cardiac care and surgery worldwide and particularly in underserved areas. A contemporary review of past and present initiatives is presented with a subsequent focus on the more challenging areas. PMID:25870347

  15. Institutional challenges for EIA implementation in China: a case study of development versus environmental protection.

    PubMed

    Gu, Lixin; Sheate, William R

    2005-07-01

    This paper provides a complete case study analysis of environmental impact assessment (EIA) implementation in China from planning to legal challenge, which is typical but rarely reported. The analysis takes an historical perspective on the regulatory and institutional structures through which EIA has been implemented in China, in order to evaluate the extent to which EIA has matured over the last 10 years. The case study relates to a proposed recreation/tourist development at Dianshan Lake, a protected water resource for Shanghai. Legal and administrative challenge began in 1993, when the case was initiated with a letter from the public, and concluded in 1996, when the case was decided in a court judgment. More recent follow-up research indicates that many issues have continued to be problems for EIA implementation in China. Policy implications in terms of regulatory structure, institutional arrangement, EIA procedure, EIA practitioners, and public participation can be drawn, and lessons learned for both the government and the developers. The study emphasizes the problem of relying on reorientation of existing institutions to promote new (environmental) priorities. PMID:15983862

  16. Hibernation in Malagasy mouse lemurs as a strategy to counter environmental challenge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kobbe, Susanne; Dausmann, Kathrin H.

    2009-10-01

    The spiny forest of southwestern Madagascar is the driest and most unpredictable region of the island. It is characterized by a pronounced seasonality with high fluctuations in ambient temperature, low availability of food, and a lack of water during the cool dry season and, additionally, by changes in environmental conditions between years. One of the few mammalian species that manages to inhabit this challenging habitat is the reddish-gray mouse lemur ( Microcebus griseorufus). The aim of our study was to determine whether this small primate uses continuous hibernation as an energy saving strategy, and if so, to characterize its physiological properties. We measured skin temperature of 16 free-ranging individuals continuously over 3 months during the cool dry season using collar temperature data loggers. Prolonged hibernation was found in three mouse lemurs and was not sex dependent (one male, two females). Skin temperature of hibernating individuals tracked ambient temperature passively with a minimum skin temperature of 6.5°C and fluctuated strongly each day (up to 20°C), depending on the insulation capacity of the hibernacula. Individuals remained in continuous hibernation even at an ambient temperature of 37°C. The animals hibernated continuously during the dry season, and hibernation bouts were only interrupted by short spontaneous arousals. The study emphasizes that hibernation is an important measure to counter environmental challenge for more tropical species than previously thought, including primates. It furthermore provides evidence that tropical hibernation is functionally similar among tropical species.

  17. A taxonomic framework for assessing governance challenges and environmental effects of integrated food-energy systems.

    PubMed

    Gerst, Michael D; Cox, Michael E; Locke, Kim A; Laser, Mark; Kapuscinski, Anne R

    2015-01-20

    Predominant forms of food and energy systems pose multiple challenges to the environment as current configurations tend to be structured around centralized one-way through-put of materials and energy. In addition, these configurations can introduce vulnerability to input material price and supply shocks as well as contribute to localized food insecurity and lost opportunities for less environmentally harmful forms of local economic development. One proposed form of system transformation involves locally integrating “unclosed” material and energy loops from food and energy systems. Such systems, which have been termed integrated food-energy systems (IFES), have existed in diverse niche forms but have not been systematically studied with respect to technological, governance, and environmental differences. As a first step in this process, we have constructed a taxonomy of IFES archetypes by using exploratory data analysis on a collection of IFES cases. We find that IFES may be classified hierarchically first by their primary purpose—food or energy production—and subsequently by degree and direction of vertical supply chain coordination. We then use this taxonomy to delineate potential governance challenges and pose a research agenda aimed at understanding what role IFES may play in food and energy system transformation and ultimately what policies may encourage IFES adoption. PMID:25495721

  18. A perspective on the potential risks of emerging contaminants to human and environmental health.

    PubMed

    Pereira, Lílian Cristina; de Souza, Alecsandra Oliveira; Franco Bernardes, Mariana Furio; Pazin, Murilo; Tasso, Maria Júlia; Pereira, Paulo Henrique; Dorta, Daniel Junqueira

    2015-09-01

    Technological, agricultural, and medical advances have improved the lifestyle of humankind. However, these advances have caused new problems that affect the environment and future generations. Emerging contaminants display properties such as low degradation potential and environmental persistence. In addition, most contaminants are lipophilic, which culminates in high bioaccumulation. The disposal of pharmaceuticals and personal care products into the environment underlies microbial and bacterial resistance. Plasticizers change several characteristics of industrialized materials, such as flexibility, but they are potentially carcinogenic and disrupt the endocrine system. Pesticides prevent the propagation of numerous kinds of pests; nevertheless, they exert neurotoxic and mutagenic effects, and they impact the environment negatively. Addition of flame retardants to a number of materials prevents flame propagation; however, after their release into the environment, these chemicals may bioaccumulate in organisms and disrupt the endocrine system, too. Surfactants can change the surface and interfacial properties of liquids, but their presence in the environment can interfere with countless enzymes and can even impair the endocrine system of various organisms and induce the feminization of species. Hence, gaining knowledge about emerging contaminants is increasingly important to minimize future damage and enable proper monitoring of each class of compounds in the environment which will help to improve legislation on this matter. PMID:26201652

  19. Recurrent Challenges for Clinicians: Emergence of Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus, Vancomycin Resistance, and Current Treatment Options.

    PubMed

    Tarai, Bansidhar; Das, Poonam; Kumar, Dilip

    2013-07-01

    Gram-positive pathogens mainly, Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus and coagulase-negative Staphylococcus, are developing increasing resistance to glycopeptides that pose a problem in treating infections caused by these pathogens. Vancomycin is the treatment of choice in treating methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA). Community-acquired MRSA is associated with infections in patients without recent history of hospital admission and without the classical risk factors for MRSA carriage (including healthcare personnel). MRSA poses new threats and challenges beyond the hospital with the emergence of community-acquired MRSA. Indiscriminate use of vancomycin leads to the emergence and spread of vancomycin resistance in multidrug resistant strains is of growing concern in the recent years. Minimum Inhibitory concentration (MIC) remains an important determinant in choosing the right antibiotics. Infections caused by MRSA strains with vancomycin MIC > 4 μg/mL leads to the vancomycin treatment failure. The Clinical Laboratory Standards Institute had also lowered the cut-off susceptibility and resistance breakpoints for vancomycin. Despite the availability of newer antimicrobial agents (Linezolid, Daptomycin, Tigecycline) for drug-resistant Gram-positive pathogens, clinicians and patients still need options for treatment of MRSA infection. There is a need to reduce the global burden of infections caused by Gram-positive pathogens and its resistant strains (mainly MRSA). Continuous efforts should be made to prevent the spread and the emergence of glycopeptide resistance by early detection of the resistant strains and using the proper infection control measures in the hospital setting. PMID:24701097

  20. Challenges of emerging adulthood-transition from paediatric to adult diabetes

    PubMed Central

    Gill, Gurmit; Nayak, Ananth U; Wilkins, Julie; Hankey, Jo; Raffeeq, Parakkal; Varughese, George I; Varadhan, Lakshminarayanan

    2014-01-01

    Diabetes mellitus is a complex condition with far reaching physical, psychological and psychosocial effects. These outcomes can be significant when considering the care of a youth transferring from paediatric through to adult diabetes services. The art of mastering a smooth care transfer is crucial if not pivotal to optimising overall diabetic control. Quite often the nature of consultation varies between the two service providers and the objectives and outcomes will mirror this. The purpose of this review is to analyse the particular challenges and barriers one might expect to encounter when transferring these services over to an adult care provider. Particular emphasis is paid towards the psychological aspects of this delicate period, which needs to be recognised and appreciated appropriately in order to understand the particular plights a young diabetic child will be challenged with. We explore the approaches that can be positively adopted in order to improve the experience for child, parents and also the multi- disciplinary team concerned with the overall delivery of this care. Finally we will close with reflection on the potential areas for future development that will ultimately aim to improve long-term outcomes and experiences of the young adolescent confronted with diabetes as well as the burden of disease and burden of cost of disease. PMID:25317240

  1. Tick-Borne Rickettsioses around the World: Emerging Diseases Challenging Old Concepts

    PubMed Central

    Parola, Philippe; Paddock, Christopher D.; Raoult, Didier

    2005-01-01

    During most of the 20th century, the epidemiology of tick-borne rickettsioses could be summarized as the occurrence of a single pathogenic rickettsia on each continent. An element of this paradigm suggested that the many other characterized and noncharacterized rickettsiae isolated from ticks were not pathogenic to humans. In this context, it was considered that relatively few tick-borne rickettsiae caused human disease. This concept was modified extensively from 1984 through 2005 by the identification of at least 11 additional rickettsial species or subspecies that cause tick-borne rickettsioses around the world. Of these agents, seven were initially isolated from ticks, often years or decades before a definitive association with human disease was established. We present here the tick-borne rickettsioses described through 2005 and focus on the epidemiological circumstances that have played a role in the emergence of the newly recognized diseases. PMID:16223955

  2. Developing national epidemiologic capacity to meet the challenges of emerging infections in Germany.

    PubMed Central

    Petersen, L. R.; Ammon, A.; Hamouda, O.; Breuer, T.; Kiessling, S.; Bellach, B.; Niemer, U.; Bindert, F. J.; Ostroff, S.; Kurth, R.

    2000-01-01

    In January 1996, the Robert Koch Institute, Germany's national public health institute, began strengthening its epidemiologic capacity to respond to emerging and other infectious diseases. Six integrated strategies were initiated: developing employee training, outbreak investigation, and epidemiologic research programs; strengthening surveillance systems; improving communications to program partners and constituents; and building international collaborations. By December 1999, five employees had completed a 2-year applied epidemiology training program, 186 health department personnel had completed a 2-week training course, 27 outbreak investigations had been completed, eight short-term research projects had been initiated, major surveillance and epidemiologic research efforts for foodborne and nosocomial infections had begun, and 16 scientific manuscripts had been published or were in press. The German experience indicates that, with a concerted effort, considerable progress in building a national applied infectious disease program can be achieved in a short time frame. PMID:11076715

  3. Tropical primary pyomyositis in children of the UK: an emerging medical challenge.

    PubMed

    Unnikrishnan, P Nithin; Perry, Daniel C; George, Harvey; Bassi, Rashpal; Bruce, Colin E

    2010-02-01

    Pyomyositis is a commonly encountered condition in the tropics. It was not described in the UK until 1998. The reason for the increasing incidence is not understood. We sought to identify the experience gained of this condition within a UK paediatric tertiary referral unit. Retrospective review of cases of pyomyositis from our institution since 1998 was undertaken to identify demographics, presentation, diagnosis and management. Thirteen cases were identified. The obturator internus was most commonly affected (62%). Staphylococcus aureus was cultured in nine cases (69%). One diagnostic retroperitoneal exploration was performed and all cases were identified by computed tomography or magnetic resonance imaging. To our knowledge, this is the first UK series of pyomyositis, reflecting its increasing Western incidence. Early diagnosis and treatment with antibiotics is all that is needed in the majority of cases. A greater awareness of this emerging condition is necessary to prevent misdiagnosis and unnecessary surgical intervention by all surgeons. PMID:19340425

  4. Emerging therapeutic delivery capabilities and challenges utilizing enzyme/protein packaged bacterial vesicles.

    PubMed

    Alves, Nathan J; Turner, Kendrick B; Medintz, Igor L; Walper, Scott A

    2015-07-01

    Nanoparticle-based therapeutics are poised to play a critical role in treating disease. These complex multifunctional drug delivery vehicles provide for the passive and active targeted delivery of numerous small molecule, peptide and protein-derived pharmaceuticals. This article will first discuss some of the current state of the art nanoparticle classes (dendrimers, lipid-based, polymeric and inorganic), highlighting benefits/drawbacks associated with their implementation. We will then discuss an emerging class of nanoparticle therapeutics, bacterial outer membrane vesicles, that can provide many of the nanoparticle benefits while simplifying assembly. Through molecular biology techniques; outer membrane vesicle hijacking potentially allows for stringent control over nanoparticle production allowing for targeted protein packaged nanoparticles to be fully synthesized by bacteria. PMID:26228777

  5. Environmental constraints shaping constituent order in emerging communication systems: Structural iconicity, interactive alignment and conventionalization.

    PubMed

    Christensen, Peer; Fusaroli, Riccardo; Tylén, Kristian

    2016-01-01

    Where does linguistic structure come from? Recent gesture elicitation studies have indicated that constituent order (corresponding to for instance subject-verb-object, or SVO in English) may be heavily influenced by human cognitive biases constraining gesture production and transmission. Here we explore the alternative hypothesis that syntactic patterns are motivated by multiple environmental and social-interactional constraints that are external to the cognitive domain. In three experiments, we systematically investigate different motivations for structure in the gestural communication of simple transitive events. The first experiment indicates that, if participants communicate about different types of events, manipulation events (e.g. someone throwing a cake) and construction events (e.g. someone baking a cake), they spontaneously and systematically produce different constituent orders, SOV and SVO respectively, thus following the principle of structural iconicity. The second experiment shows that participants' choice of constituent order is also reliably influenced by social-interactional forces of interactive alignment, that is, the tendency to re-use an interlocutor's previous choice of constituent order, thus potentially overriding affordances for iconicity. Lastly, the third experiment finds that the relative frequency distribution of referent event types motivates the stabilization and conventionalization of a single constituent order for the communication of different types of events. Together, our results demonstrate that constituent order in emerging gestural communication systems is shaped and stabilized in response to multiple external environmental and social factors: structural iconicity, interactive alignment and distributional frequency. PMID:26402649

  6. Environmental assessment of anaerobically digested sludge reuse in agriculture: potential impacts of emerging micropollutants.

    PubMed

    Hospido, Almudena; Carballa, Marta; Moreira, Maite; Omil, Francisco; Lema, Juan M; Feijoo, Gumersindo

    2010-05-01

    Agricultural application of sewage sludge has been emotionally discussed in the last decades, because the latter contains organic micropollutants with unknown fate and risk potential. In this work, the reuse of anaerobically digested sludge in agriculture is evaluated from an environmental point of view by using Life Cycle Assessment methodology. More specifically, the potential impacts of emerging micropollutants, such as pharmaceuticals and personal care products, present in the sludge have been quantified. Four scenarios were considered according to the temperature of the anaerobic digestion (mesophilic or thermophilic) and the sludge retention time (20 or 10d), and they have been compared with the non-treated sludge. From an environmental point of view, the disposal of undigested sludge is not the most suitable alternative, except for global warming due to the dominance (65-85%) of the indirect emissions associated to the electricity use. Nutrient-related direct emissions dominate the eutrophication category impact in all the scenarios (>71.4%), although a beneficial impact related to the avoidance of industrial fertilisers production is also quantified (up to 6.7%). In terms of human and terrestrial toxicity, the direct emissions of heavy metals to soil dominate these two impact categories (>70%), and the contribution of other micropollutants is minimal. Moreover, only six (Galaxolide, Tonalide, Diazepam, Ibuprofen, Sulfamethoxazole and 17alpha-ethinyloestradiol) out of the 13 substances considered are really significant since they account for more than 95% of the overall micropollutants impact. PMID:20347114

  7. Photonics Xplorers and Leaders: challenging diverse students in a flat world for emerging careers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hilliard-Clark, Joyce; Gilchrist, Pamela O.

    2007-06-01

    The Photonics programs address the question of how to integrate scientific content, student encouragement, and parental support to engage minority high school students to experience success in areas of a national need. Historical data indicates African Americans do not take advanced mathematics and science courses, especially physics, in high school. Therefore, we propose using a variety of strategies for providing instruction in leadership, experimentation, research writing, communications and scientific presentation to work with students, families and teachers in promoting selection of and academic achievement in challenging science courses. Seventy-five African American students are participating in year-round Photonics programs at The Science House on NC State University's Centennial Campus. Students from sixteen counties in North Carolina learn about fiber optics, communications and the properties of light.

  8. Emerging from the tragedies in Bangladesh: a challenge to voluntarism in the global economy.

    PubMed

    Claeson, Björn Skorpen

    2015-02-01

    Under the regime of private company or multi-stakeholder voluntary codes of conduct and industry social auditing, workers have absorbed low wages and unsafe and abusive conditions; labor leaders and union members have become the targets of both government and factory harassment and violence; and trade union power has waned. Nowhere have these private systems of codes and audits so clearly failed to protect workers as in Bangladesh's apparel industry. However, international labor groups and Bangladeshi unions have succeeded in mounting a challenge to voluntarism in the global economy, persuading more than 180 companies to make a binding and enforceable commitment to workers' safety in an agreement with 12 unions. The extent to which this Bangladesh Accord will be able to influence the entrenched global regime of voluntary codes and weak trade unions remains an open question. But if the Accord can make progress in Bangladesh, it can help to inspire similar efforts in other countries and in other industries. PMID:25816167

  9. The emerging era of pharmacogenomics: current successes, future potential, and challenges

    PubMed Central

    Lee, JW; Aminkeng, F; Bhavsar, AP; Shaw, K; Carleton, BC; Hayden, MR; Ross, CJD

    2014-01-01

    The vast range of genetic diversity contributes to a wonderful array of human traits and characteristics. Unfortunately, a consequence of this genetic diversity is large variability in drug response between people, meaning that no single medication is safe and effective in everyone. The debilitating and sometimes deadly consequences of adverse drug reactions (ADRs) are a major and unmet problem of modern medicine. Pharmacogenomics can uncover associations between genetic variation and drug safety and has the potential to predict ADRs in individual patients. Here we review pharmacogenomic successes leading to changes in clinical practice, as well as clinical areas probably to be impacted by pharmacogenomics in the near future. We also discuss some of the challenges, and potential solutions, that remain for the implementation of pharmacogenomic testing into clinical practice for the significant improvement of drug safety. PMID:24684508

  10. Migrants and emerging public health issues in a globalized world: threats, risks and challenges, an evidence-based framework

    PubMed Central

    Gushulak, BD; Weekers, J; MacPherson, DW

    2010-01-01

    International population mobility is an underlying factor in the emergence of public health threats and risks that must be managed globally. These risks are often related, but not limited, to transmissible pathogens. Mobile populations can link zones of disease emergence to lowprevalence or nonendemic areas through rapid or high-volume international movements, or both. Against this background of human movement, other global processes such as economics, trade, transportation, environment and climate change, as well as civil security influence the health impacts of disease emergence. Concurrently, global information systems, together with regulatory frameworks for disease surveillance and reporting, affect organizational and public awareness of events of potential public health significance. International regulations directed at disease mitigation and control have not kept pace with the growing challenges associated with the volume, speed, diversity, and disparity of modern patterns of human movement. The thesis that human population mobility is itself a major determinant of global public health is supported in this article by review of the published literature from the perspective of determinants of health (such as genetics/biology, behavior, environment, and socioeconomics), population-based disease prevalence differences, existing national and international health policies and regulations, as well as inter-regional shifts in population demographics and health outcomes. This paper highlights some of the emerging threats and risks to public health, identifies gaps in existing frameworks to manage health issues associated with migration, and suggests changes in approach to population mobility, globalization, and public health. The proposed integrated approach includes a broad spectrum of stakeholders ranging from individual health-care providers to policy makers and international organizations that are primarily involved in global health management, or are influenced

  11. Challenges and Opportunities for Urban Environmental Health and Sustainability: the HEALTHY-POLIS initiative.

    PubMed

    Vardoulakis, Sotiris; Dear, Keith; Wilkinson, Paul

    2016-01-01

    Cities around the world face many environmental health challenges including contamination of air, water and soil, traffic congestion and noise, and poor housing conditions exacerbated by unsustainable urban development and climate change. Integrated assessment of these risks offers opportunities for holistic, low carbon solutions in the urban environment that can bring multiple benefits for public health. The Healthy-Polis consortium aims to protect and promote urban health through multi-disciplinary, policy-relevant research on urban environmental health and sustainability. We are doing this by promoting improved methods of health risk assessment, facilitating international collaboration, contributing to the training of research scientists and students, and engaging with key stakeholders in government, local authorities, international organisations, industry and academia. A major focus of the consortium is to promote and support international research projects coordinated between two or more countries. The disciplinary areas represented in the consortium are many and varied, including environmental epidemiology, modelling and exposure assessment, system dynamics, health impact assessment, multi-criteria decision analysis, and other quantitative and qualitative approaches. This Healthy-Polis special issue presents a range of case studies and reviews that illustrate the need for a systems-based understanding of the urban environment. PMID:26960714

  12. Lessons learned and new challenges for integrated assessment under the National Environmental Policy Act

    SciTech Connect

    Carnes, S.A.; Reed, R.M.

    1995-12-31

    One of the first government-sponsored demands for integrated assessment to support decision making in the United States is embodied in the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA). Over the past 25 years, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) has supported federal agencies` in evaluating health and environmental impacts as required by NEPA. Many of ORNL`s efforts have focused on complex, programmatic assessments that break new ground and require and integrate expertise from a wide range of technical disciplines. Examples of ORNL projects that illustrate the use of integrated assessment approaches include environmental documentation for: (1) the Department of the Army`s Chemical Stockpile Disposal Program, (2) the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission`s licensing activities related to the Owens River Basin in eastern California and along a 500-mile reach of the upper Ohio River, and (3) the Nuclear Regulatory Commission`s decision regarding restart of the undamaged reactor (Unit 1) at Three Mile Island. Our discussion of these examples illustrates successful integrated assessment approaches and identifies new challenges facing integrated assessment activities.

  13. In Vitro Emergence of High Persistence upon Periodic Aminoglycoside Challenge in the ESKAPE Pathogens.

    PubMed

    Michiels, Joran Elie; Van den Bergh, Bram; Verstraeten, Natalie; Fauvart, Maarten; Michiels, Jan

    2016-08-01

    Health care-associated infections present a major threat to modern medical care. Six worrisome nosocomial pathogens-Enterococcus faecium, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Enterobacter spp.-are collectively referred to as the "ESKAPE bugs." They are notorious for extensive multidrug resistance, yet persistence, or the phenotypic tolerance displayed by a variant subpopulation, remains underappreciated in these pathogens. Importantly, persistence can prevent eradication of antibiotic-sensitive bacterial populations and is thought to act as a catalyst for the development of genetic resistance. Concentration- and time-dependent aminoglycoside killing experiments were used to investigate persistence in the ESKAPE pathogens. Additionally, a recently developed method for the experimental evolution of persistence was employed to investigate adaptation to high-dose, extended-interval aminoglycoside therapy in vitro We show that ESKAPE pathogens exhibit biphasic killing kinetics, indicative of persister formation. In vitro cycling between aminoglycoside killing and persister cell regrowth, evocative of clinical high-dose extended-interval therapy, caused a 37- to 213-fold increase in persistence without the emergence of resistance. Increased persistence also manifested in biofilms and provided cross-tolerance to different clinically important antibiotics. Together, our results highlight a possible drawback of intermittent, high-dose antibiotic therapy and suggest that clinical diagnostics might benefit from taking into account persistence. PMID:27185802

  14. Bacteria in beach sands: an emerging challenge in protecting coastal water quality and bather health

    PubMed Central

    Gast, Rebecca J.

    2011-01-01

    To protect bather health at recreational beaches, fecal indicator bacterial standards are used to monitor water quality, and waters exceeding the standards are subsequently closed to bathers. However beachgoers are also in contact with beach sands, the sanitary quality of which is not included within beach monitoring programs. In fact, sands and sediments provide habitat where fecal bacterial populations may persist, and in some cases grow, in the coastal zone. Specific pathogens are less well studied in beach sands and sediments, but there is a body of evidence that they too may persist in these environments. This paper reviews the current state of knowledge regarding the abundance and distribution of fecal indicator bacteria and pathogens in beach sands of diverse climatological regions, and at beaches subjected to varied levels of anthropogenic impact. In all regions fecal indicator bacteria are nearly ubiquitous in beach sands, and similar relationships emerge between fecal indicator abundance in dry sand, submerged sands, and water. Taken together, these studies contextualize a potential public health issue and identify research questions that must be addressed in order to support future policy decisions. PMID:21162561

  15. Emerging roles for biomedical librarians: a survey of current practice, challenges, and changes

    PubMed Central

    Crum, Janet A.; Cooper, I. Diane

    2013-01-01

    Objective: This study is intended to (1) identify emerging roles for biomedical librarians and determine how common these roles are in a variety of library settings, (2) identify barriers to taking on new roles, and (3) determine how librarians are developing the capacity to take on new roles. Methods: A survey was conducted of librarians in biomedical settings. Results: Most biomedical librarians are taking on new roles. The most common roles selected by survey respondents include analysis and enhancement of user experiences, support for social media, support for systematic reviews, clinical informationist, help for faculty or staff with authorship issues, and implementation of researcher profiling and collaboration tools. Respondents in academic settings are more likely to report new roles than hospital librarians are, but some new roles are common in both settings. Respondents use a variety of methods to free up time for new roles, but predominant methods vary between directors and librarians and between academic and hospital respondents. Lack of time is the biggest barrier that librarians face when trying to adopt new roles. New roles are associated with increased collaboration with individuals and/or groups outside the library. Conclusion and Implications: This survey documents the widespread incorporation of new roles in biomedical libraries in the United States, as well as the barriers to adopting these roles and the means by which librarians are making time for them. The results of the survey can be used to inform strategic planning, succession planning, library education, and career development for biomedical librarians. PMID:24163599

  16. Recent successes and emerging challenges for coordinated satellite/ground-based magnetospheric exploration and modeling.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Angelopoulos, Vassilis

    With the availability of a distributed constellation of spacecraft (THEMIS, Geotail, Cluster) and increased capability ground based arrays (SuperDARN, THEMIS/GBOs), it is now pos-sible to infer simply from timing significant information regarding mapping of magnetospheric phenomena. Optical, magnetometer and radar data can pinpoint the location and nature of onset signatures. On the other hand, magnetic field modeling constrained by physical bound-aries (such as the isotropy boundary) the measured magnetic field and total pressure values at a distibuted network of satellites has proven to do a much better job at correlating ionospheric precipitation and diffuse auroral boundaries to magnetospheric phenomena, such as the inward boundary of the dipolarization fronts. It is now possible to routinely compare in-situ measured phase space densities of ion and electron distributions during ionosphere -magnetosphere con-junctions, in the absense of potential drops. It is also possible to not only infer equivalent current systems from the ground, but use reconstruction of the ionospheric current system from space to determine the full electrodynamics evolution of the ionosphere and compare with radars. Assimilation of this emerging ground based and global magnetospheric panoply into a self consistent magnetospheric model will likely be one of the most fruitful endeavors in magnetospheric exploration during the next few years.

  17. Suicidal behavior in children younger than twelve: a diagnostic challenge for emergency department personnel.

    PubMed

    Tishler, Carl L; Reiss, Natalie Staats; Rhodes, Angel R

    2007-09-01

    Suicide is one of the leading causes of death in children younger than 12 years and is the fourth leading cause of death in 12 year olds. Increasing numbers of young children now present to the emergency department (ED) with mental health issues, and ED personnel must determine the most appropriate disposition options for these children, sometimes without the assistance of specialty mental health services. Much of the present body of literature describing suicidality fails to separate children from adolescents for analysis and discussion. This article reviews relevant literature pertaining to suicidal thoughts and behaviors in young children and discusses problems with available data, as well as epidemiology, risk factors, typical motivations, methods, assessment, and disposition for these patients. Suicidal children younger than 12 years are often clinically different from suicidal adolescents and adults and may require unique assessment and disposition strategies in the ED. A child who has ideation without a clear plan, or has made an attempt of low lethality, can sometimes be discharged home, provided that a supportive, responsible caregiver is willing to monitor the child and take him or her to outpatient mental health appointments. If the home environment is detrimental, or the child has used a method of high potential lethality, inpatient treatment is the most appropriate course of action. Mental health specialty services, when available, should be used to help determine the most appropriate disposition. PMID:17726127

  18. Emerging Technologies for the Detection of Rabies Virus: Challenges and Hopes in the 21st Century

    PubMed Central

    Fooks, Anthony R.; Johnson, Nicholas; Freuling, Conrad M.; Wakeley, Philip R.; Banyard, Ashley C.; McElhinney, Lorraine M.; Marston, Denise A.; Dastjerdi, Akbar; Wright, Edward; Weiss, Robin A.; Müller, Thomas

    2009-01-01

    The diagnosis of rabies is routinely based on clinical and epidemiological information, especially when exposures are reported in rabies-endemic countries. Diagnostic tests using conventional assays that appear to be negative, even when undertaken late in the disease and despite the clinical diagnosis, have a tendency, at times, to be unreliable. These tests are rarely optimal and entirely dependent on the nature and quality of the sample supplied. In the course of the past three decades, the application of molecular biology has aided in the development of tests that result in a more rapid detection of rabies virus. These tests enable viral strain identification from clinical specimens. Currently, there are a number of molecular tests that can be used to complement conventional tests in rabies diagnosis. Indeed the challenges in the 21st century for the development of rabies diagnostics are not of a technical nature; these tests are available now. The challenges in the 21st century for diagnostic test developers are two-fold: firstly, to achieve internationally accepted validation of a test that will then lead to its acceptance by organisations globally. Secondly, the areas of the world where such tests are needed are mainly in developing regions where financial and logistical barriers prevent their implementation. Although developing countries with a poor healthcare infrastructure recognise that molecular-based diagnostic assays will be unaffordable for routine use, the cost/benefit ratio should still be measured. Adoption of rapid and affordable rabies diagnostic tests for use in developing countries highlights the importance of sharing and transferring technology through laboratory twinning between the developed and the developing countries. Importantly for developing countries, the benefit of molecular methods as tools is the capability for a differential diagnosis of human diseases that present with similar clinical symptoms. Antemortem testing for human

  19. Social Norms and Global Environmental Challenges: The Complex Interaction of Behaviors, Values, and Policy.

    PubMed

    Kinzig, Ann P; Ehrlich, Paul R; Alston, Lee J; Arrow, Kenneth; Barrett, Scott; Buchman, Timothy G; Daily, Gretchen C; Levin, Bruce; Levin, Simon; Oppenheimer, Michael; Ostrom, Elinor; Saari, Donald

    2013-03-01

    Government policies are needed when people's behaviors fail to deliver the public good. Those policies will be most effective if they can stimulate long-term changes in beliefs and norms, creating and reinforcing the behaviors needed to solidify and extend the public good.It is often the short-term acceptability of potential policies, rather than their longer-term efficacy, that determines their scope and deployment. The policy process should consider both time scales. The academy, however, has provided insufficient insight on the coevolution of social norms and different policy instruments, thus compromising the capacity of decision makers to craft effective solutions to the society's most intractable environmental problems. Life scientists could make fundamental contributions to this agenda through targeted research on the emergence of social norms. PMID:25143635

  20. Social Norms and Global Environmental Challenges: The Complex Interaction of Behaviors, Values, and Policy

    PubMed Central

    Ehrlich, Paul R.; Alston, Lee J.; Arrow, Kenneth; Barrett, Scott; Buchman, Timothy G.; Daily, Gretchen C.; Levin, Bruce; Levin, Simon; Oppenheimer, Michael; Ostrom, Elinor; Saari, Donald

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Government policies are needed when people’s behaviors fail to deliver the public good. Those policies will be most effective if they can stimulate long-term changes in beliefs and norms, creating and reinforcing the behaviors needed to solidify and extend the public good.It is often the short-term acceptability of potential policies, rather than their longer-term efficacy, that determines their scope and deployment. The policy process should consider both time scales. The academy, however, has provided insufficient insight on the coevolution of social norms and different policy instruments, thus compromising the capacity of decision makers to craft effective solutions to the society’s most intractable environmental problems. Life scientists could make fundamental contributions to this agenda through targeted research on the emergence of social norms. PMID:25143635

  1. Challenges and Opportunities to Developing Synergies Among Diverse Environmental Observatories: FSML, NEON, and GLEON

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williamson, C. E.; Weathers, K. C.; Knoll, L. B.; Brentrup, J.

    2012-12-01

    Recent rapid advances in sensor technology and cyberinfrastructure have enabled the development of numerous environmental observatories ranging from local networks at field stations and marine laboratories (FSML) to continental scale observatories such as the National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) to global scale observatories such as the Global Lake Ecological Observatory Network (GLEON). While divergent goals underlie the initial development of these observatories, and they are often designed to serve different communities, many opportunities for synergies exist. In addition, the use of existing infrastructure may enhance the cost-effectiveness of building and maintaining large scale observatories. For example, FSMLs are established facilities with the staff and infrastructure to host sensor nodes of larger networks. Many field stations have existing staff and long-term databases as well as smaller sensor networks that are the product of a single or small group of investigators with a unique data management system embedded in a local or regional community. These field station based facilities and data are a potentially untapped gold mine for larger continental and global scale observatories; common ecological and environmental challenges centered on understanding the impacts of changing climate, land use, and invasive species often underlie these efforts. The purpose of this talk is to stimulate a dialog on the challenges of merging efforts across these different spatial and temporal scales, as well as addressing how to develop synergies among observatory networks with divergent roots and philosophical approaches. For example, FSMLs have existing long-term databases and facilities, while NEON has sparse past data but a well-developed template and closely coordinated team working in a coherent format across a continental scale. GLEON on the other hand is a grass-roots network of experts in science, information technology, and engineering with a common goal

  2. Perinatally acquired HIV infection in adolescents from sub-Saharan Africa: a review of emerging challenges

    PubMed Central

    Lowenthal, Elizabeth D; Bakeera-Kitaka, Sabrina; Marukutira, Tafireyi; Chapman, Jennifer; Goldrath, Kathryn; Ferrand, Rashida A

    2014-01-01

    Worldwide, more than three million children are infected with HIV, 90% of whom live in sub-Saharan Africa. As the HIV epidemic matures and antiretroviral treatment is scaled up, children with HIV are reaching adolescence in large numbers. The growing population of adolescents with perinatally acquired HIV infection living within this region presents not only unprecedented challenges but also opportunities to learn about the pathogenesis of HIV infection. In this Review, we discuss the changing epidemiology of paediatric HIV and the particular features of HIV infection in adolescents in sub-Saharan Africa. Longstanding HIV infection acquired when the immune system is not developed results in distinctive chronic clinical complications that cause severe morbidity. As well as dealing with chronic illness, HIV-infected adolescents have to confront psychosocial issues, maintain adherence to drugs, and learn to negotiate sexual relationships, while undergoing rapid physical and psychological development. Context-specific strategies for early identification of HIV infection in children and prompt linkage to care need to be developed. Clinical HIV care should integrate age-appropriate sexual and reproductive health and psychological, educational, and social services. Health-care workers will need to be trained to recognise and manage the needs of these young people so that the increasing numbers of children surviving to adolescence can access quality care beyond specialist services at low-level health-care facilities. PMID:24406145

  3. General anesthesia in tetanus patient undergoing emergency surgery: A challenge for anesthesiologist.

    PubMed

    Mahajan, Reena; Kumar, Amit; Singh, Shiv Kumar

    2014-01-01

    Tetanus is an acute often fatal disease produced by gram positive obligate anaerobic bacterium Clostridium tetani. Tetanolysin damages local tissue and provides optimal conditions for bacterial multiplication. It is therefore important to perform a wide debridement of any wound suspected of being a portal of entry for the bacteria. Little evidence exists to recommend specific anesthetic protocols. We encountered a child scheduled for fracture both bone forearm with developing tetanus. Initial management done with intravenous (i.v) diazepam, phenobarbitone, and metronidazole. After premedication with midazolam and fentanyl, induction was done by propofol 60 mg, vecuronium 2.5 mg, ventilated with O2+ N2O 50:50 with sevoflurane 2% and tracheal intubation was done with 5.5 ID cuffed PVC endotracheal tube. Anesthesia was maintained with sevoflurane 2% and vecuronium intermittently when required. Intraop vitals were stable. On completion of surgery, reversal given and patient was extubated uneventfully and shifted to recovery room. Little evidence exists to recommend specific anesthetic technique for tetanus patient posted for surgery. When present, obvious wounds should be surgically debrided. Ideally patients considered for surgery should undergo anesthesia and surgery before severe autonomic dysfunction develops. Most anesthetic managements are based on limited evidence. However, we used sevoflurane and vecuronium successfully, further study is needed to establish their efficacy and safety. Major challenges lie in the control of muscle rigidity and spasm, autonomic disturbances and prevention of complications. PMID:25886114

  4. Dietary phosphorus restriction in advanced chronic kidney disease: merits, challenges, and emerging strategies.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez, Orlando M; Wolf, Myles

    2010-01-01

    Hyperphosphatemia is an independent risk factor for mortality in patients on maintenance dialysis. Since phosphorus clearance by standard three times-weekly dialysis is insufficient to balance ongoing dietary phosphorus intake, strategies to prevent absorption of dietary phosphorus are essential for attenuating increased serum levels. Dietary phosphorus binders are used widely for this purpose but dietary phosphorus restriction is relatively underutilized, most likely because of the logistical complexity of instituting and monitoring a low phosphorus diet, and for fear of worsening protein-energy wasting, which itself is a potent risk factor for mortality. In this review, we propose sustainable strategies for reducing phosphorus intake while avoiding exacerbation of protein-energy wasting. The approach is based on recognition of the dissociation between protein and phosphorus content in phosphorus-rich processed foods and the varying phosphorus bioavailability in different dietary sources. Controlling serum phosphate levels is among the most challenging aspects of day-to-day dialysis care but integration of sensible dietary interventions will likely improve phosphorus control. PMID:20557490

  5. The emergence of dengue in Bangladesh: epidemiology, challenges and future disease risk.

    PubMed

    Sharmin, Sifat; Viennet, Elvina; Glass, Kathryn; Harley, David

    2015-10-01

    Dengue occurred sporadically in Bangladesh from 1964 until a large epidemic in 2000 established the virus. We trace dengue from the time it was first identified in Bangladesh and identify factors favourable to future dengue haemorrhagic fever epidemics. The epidemic in 2000 was likely due to introduction of a dengue virus strain from a nearby endemic country, probably Thailand. Cessation of dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) spraying, climatic, socio-demographic, and lifestyle factors also contributed to epidemic transmission. The largest number of cases was notified in 2002 and since then reported outbreaks have generally declined, although with increased notifications in alternate years. The apparent decline might be partially due to public awareness with consequent reduction in mosquito breeding and increased prevalence of immunity. However, passive hospital-based surveillance has changed with mandatory serological confirmation now required for case reporting. Further, a large number of cases remain undetected because only patients with severe dengue require hospitalisation. Thus, the reduction in notification numbers may be an artefact of the surveillance system. Indeed, population-based serological survey indicates that dengue transmission continues to be common. In the future, the absence of active interventions, unplanned urbanisation, environmental deterioration, increasing population mobility, and economic factors will heighten dengue risk. Projected increases in temperature and rainfall may exacerbate this. PMID:26333430

  6. Heterogeneous catalysis: Enigmas, illusions, challenges, realities, and emergent strategies of design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, John Meurig

    2008-05-01

    Predominantly this article deals with the question of how to design new solid catalysts for a variety of industrial and laboratory-orientated purposes. A generally applicable strategy, illustrated by numerous examples, is made possible based on the use of nanoporous materials on to the (high-area) inner surfaces of which well-defined (experimentally and computationally) active centers are placed in a spatially separated fashion. Such single-site catalysts, which have much in common with metal-centered homogenous catalysts and enzymes, enable a wide range of new catalysts to be designed for a variety of selective oxidations, hydrogenations, hydrations and hydrodewaxing, and other reactions that the "greening" of industrial processes demand. Examples are given of new shape-selective, regio-selective, and enantioselective catalysts, many of which operate under mild, environmentally benign conditions. Also considered are some of the reasons why detailed studies of adsorption and stoichiometric reactions at single-crystal surfaces have, disappointingly, not hitherto paved the way to the design and production of many new heterogenous catalysts. Recent work of a theoretical and high-throughout nature, allied to some experimental studies of well-chosen model systems, holds promise for the identification of new catalysts for simple, but industrially important reactions.

  7. The big challenges in modeling human and environmental well-being

    PubMed Central

    Tuljapurkar, Shripad

    2016-01-01

    This article is a selective review of quantitative research, historical and prospective, that is needed to inform sustainable development policy. I start with a simple framework to highlight how demography and productivity shape human well-being. I use that to discuss three sets of issues and corresponding challenges to modeling: first, population prehistory and early human development and their implications for the future; second, the multiple distinct dimensions of human and environmental well-being and the meaning of sustainability; and, third, inequality as a phenomenon triggered by development and models to examine changing inequality and its consequences. I conclude with a few words about other important factors: political, institutional, and cultural. PMID:27134734

  8. Chemicals of emerging concern in the Great Lakes Basin: an analysis of environmental exposures.

    PubMed

    Klecka, Gary; Persoon, Carolyn; Currie, Rebecca

    2010-01-01

    This review and statistical analysis was conducted to better understand the nature and significance of environmental exposures in the Great Lakes Basin and watershed to a variety of environmental contaminants. These contaminants of interest included current-use pesticides, pharmaceuticals, organic wastewater contaminants, alkylphenol ethoxylates, perfluorinated surfactants, flame retardants, and chlorinated paraffins. The available literature was critically reviewed and used to develop a database containing 19,611 residue values for 326 substances. In many papers, sampling locations were characterized as being downstream from municipal wastewater discharges, receiving waters for industrial facilities, areas susceptible to agricultural or urban contamination, or harbors and ports. To develop an initial assessment of their potential ecological significance, the contamination levels found were compared with currently available regulatory standards, guidelines, or criteria. This review was prepared for the IJC multi-board work group, and served as background material for an expert consultation, held in March, 2009, in which the significance of the contaminants found was discussed. Moreover, the consultation attempted to identify and assess opportunities for strengthening future actions that will protect the Great Lakes. Based on the findings and conclusions of the expert consultation, it is apparent that a wide variety of chemicals of emerging concern have been detected in environmental media (air, water, sediment, biota) from the Great Lakes Basin, although many are present at only trace levels. Although the presence of these contaminants raises concerns in the public and among the scientific community, the findings must be placed in context. Significant scientific interpretation is required to understand the extent to which these chemicals may pose a threat to the ecosystem and to human health. The ability to detect chemicals in environmental media greatly surpasses

  9. The Modern Solar House: Architecture, Energy, and the Emergence of Environmentalism, 1938--1959

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barber, Daniel A.

    This dissertation describes the active discourse regarding solar house heating in American architectural, engineering, political, economic, and corporate contexts from the eve of World War II until the late 1950s. Interweaving these multiple narratives, the aim of the project is threefold: to document this vital discourse, to place it in the context of the history of architecture, and to trace through it the emergence of a techno-cultural environmentalism. Experimentation in the solar house relied on the principles of modern architecture for both energy efficiency and claims to cultural relevance. A passive "solar house principle" was developed in the late 30s in the suburban houses of George Fred Keck that involved open plans and flexible roof lines, and emphasized volumetric design. Spurred by wartime concern over energy resource depletion, architectural interest in solar heating also engaged an engineering discourse; in particular, an experimental program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology led to four solar houses and a codification of its technological parameters. Attention to the MIT projects at the UN and in the Truman and Eisenhower administrations placed the solar house as a central node in an emergent network exploring the problems and possibilities of a renewable resource economy. Further experimentation elaborated on connections between this architecturalengineering discourse and the technical assistance regimes of development assistance; here by MIT researcher Maria Telkes, who also collaborated, at different junctures, with the architects Eleanor Raymond and Aladar Olgyay. The solar house discourse was further developed as a cultural project in the 1958 competition to design a solar heated residence, "Living With the Sun," which coalesced the diverse formal tendencies of midcentury modernism to promote the solar house as an innovation in both lifestyle and policy. Though the examples described are not successful as either technological

  10. Using Roadmapping to Meet the Challenge of Implementing the Environmental Management's 2012 Vision at the INEEL

    SciTech Connect

    Murphy, J.; Mascareqas, C.; McNeel, K.; Stiger, S.; Thiel, E.

    2003-02-26

    Soon after becoming the Program Secretarial Officer (PSO) for the Department of Energy (DOE) Environmental Management (EM) Program, Jessie Roberson initiated a thorough Top-to-Bottom review of the EM Program and challenged the sites to conduct business differently. As an example, she emphasized risk reduction, not just risk management. INEEL's 2070 cleanup baseline was considered too long and must be completed significantly sooner. The cleanup costs must also be significantly reduced from the current baseline of $41 Billion. The challenge is to complete most of the cleanup by 2012 and to reduce the EM footprint at the INEEL to one site area, the Idaho Nuclear Technology and Engineering Center (INTEC), also by 2012. The difficulty of the challenge is increased by the requirement to perform the work within nearly flat budgets. The bottom line: do more work in less time for less money. Further complications were added when funding for EM's technology development program was greatly reduced, cutting out most of the technology support to the operational projects. To face this incredible challenge, the INEEL began a several month effort to develop an implementation strategy and the tactics required for success. The strategies to meet EM's challenge under these constraints require the scope of work to be crisply defined with a clear understanding of the completion criteria. A number of techniques will be discussed in this paper that were used to more fully define the completion criteria as well as redefine the cleanup projects and their system boundaries. The mechanics of redefining and recasting cleanup projects at the INEEL to focus on how all the work fits together for an entire site area along with some of the advantages will be discussed. This paper highlights how roadmapping techniques and processes were used to gather information about the site's cleanup programs, review the system boundaries, identify the project risks to completing the cleanup tasks, and to help

  11. The management challenge for household waste in emerging economies like Brazil: realistic source separation and activation of reverse logistics.

    PubMed

    Fehr, M

    2014-09-01

    Business opportunities in the household waste sector in emerging economies still evolve around the activities of bulk collection and tipping with an open material balance. This research, conducted in Brazil, pursued the objective of shifting opportunities from tipping to reverse logistics in order to close the balance. To do this, it illustrated how specific knowledge of sorted waste composition and reverse logistics operations can be used to determine realistic temporal and quantitative landfill diversion targets in an emerging economy context. Experimentation constructed and confirmed the recycling trilogy that consists of source separation, collection infrastructure and reverse logistics. The study on source separation demonstrated the vital difference between raw and sorted waste compositions. Raw waste contained 70% biodegradable and 30% inert matter. Source separation produced 47% biodegradable, 20% inert and 33% mixed material. The study on collection infrastructure developed the necessary receiving facilities. The study on reverse logistics identified private operators capable of collecting and processing all separated inert items. Recycling activities for biodegradable material were scarce and erratic. Only farmers would take the material as animal feed. No composting initiatives existed. The management challenge was identified as stimulating these activities in order to complete the trilogy and divert the 47% source-separated biodegradable discards from the landfills. PMID:24990590

  12. Fasciola hepatica: effect of the natural light level on cercarial emergence from temperature-challenged Galba truncatula

    PubMed Central

    Vignoles, Philippe; Titi, Amal; Rondelaud, Daniel; Mekroud, Abdeslam; Dreyfuss, Gilles

    2014-01-01

    As abrupt changes in water temperature (thermal shock) triggered a significantly greater cercarial emergence of Fasciola hepatica from experimentally infected Galba truncatula, laboratory investigations were carried out to study the influence of light on cercarial emergence in snails subjected to a thermal shock every week (a mean of 12 °C for 3 h) during the patent period. Thermal shock for these temperature-challenged (TC) snails was carried out outdoors under artificial or natural light, or indoors under constant artificial light. Compared with the infected control snails always reared indoors at 20 °C, the number of cercariae in TC snails subjected to a thermal shock and natural light outdoors was significantly greater. The repetition of this experiment by subjecting TC snails to the same thermal shock indoors under an artificial light level ranging from 600 to 3000 lux did not show any significant difference among the numbers of cercariae in the different subgroups. A detailed analysis of the results noted in the TC snails subjected to natural light during the thermal shock demonstrated that the number of cercariae-releasing snails was significantly higher between 601 and 1200 lux and for the highest nebulosity values (7–8 octas, which corresponds to a sufficiently or completely overcast sky). Contrary to the intensity of artificial light, which did not influence cercarial emergence, the natural light level had a significant effect on this process when F. hepatica-infected snails were subjected to a regular thermal shock during the patent period. PMID:24572174

  13. Assessment of Environmental Enteric Dysfunction in the SHINE Trial: Methods and Challenges.

    PubMed

    Prendergast, Andrew J; Humphrey, Jean H; Mutasa, Kuda; Majo, Florence D; Rukobo, Sandra; Govha, Margaret; Mbuya, Mduduzi N N; Moulton, Lawrence H; Stoltzfus, Rebecca J

    2015-12-15

    Environmental enteric dysfunction (EED) is a virtually ubiquitous, but poorly defined, disorder of the small intestine among people living in conditions of poverty, which begins early in infancy and persists. EED is characterized by altered gut structure and function, leading to reduced absorptive surface area and impaired intestinal barrier function. It is hypothesized that recurrent exposure to fecal pathogens and changes in the composition of the intestinal microbiota initiate this process, which leads to a self-perpetuating cycle of pathology. We view EED as a primary gut disorder that drives chronic systemic inflammation, leading to growth hormone resistance and impaired linear growth. There is currently no accepted case definition or gold-standard biomarker of EED, making field studies challenging. The Sanitation Hygiene Infant Nutrition Efficacy (SHINE) trial in Zimbabwe is evaluating the independent and combined effects of a package of infant feeding and/or water, sanitation, and hygiene interventions on stunting and anemia. SHINE therefore provides an opportunity to longitudinally evaluate EED in a well-characterized cohort of infants, using a panel of biomarkers along the hypothesized causal pathway. Our aims are to describe the evolution of EED during infancy, ascertain its contribution to stunting, and investigate the impact of the randomized interventions on the EED pathway. In this article, we describe current concepts of EED, challenges in defining the condition, and our approach to evaluating EED in the SHINE trial. PMID:26602300

  14. Assessment of Environmental Enteric Dysfunction in the SHINE Trial: Methods and Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Prendergast, Andrew J.; Humphrey, Jean H.; Mutasa, Kuda; Majo, Florence D.; Rukobo, Sandra; Govha, Margaret; Mbuya, Mduduzi N. N.; Moulton, Lawrence H.; Stoltzfus, Rebecca J.

    2015-01-01

    Environmental enteric dysfunction (EED) is a virtually ubiquitous, but poorly defined, disorder of the small intestine among people living in conditions of poverty, which begins early in infancy and persists. EED is characterized by altered gut structure and function, leading to reduced absorptive surface area and impaired intestinal barrier function. It is hypothesized that recurrent exposure to fecal pathogens and changes in the composition of the intestinal microbiota initiate this process, which leads to a self-perpetuating cycle of pathology. We view EED as a primary gut disorder that drives chronic systemic inflammation, leading to growth hormone resistance and impaired linear growth. There is currently no accepted case definition or gold-standard biomarker of EED, making field studies challenging. The Sanitation Hygiene Infant Nutrition Efficacy (SHINE) trial in Zimbabwe is evaluating the independent and combined effects of a package of infant feeding and/or water, sanitation, and hygiene interventions on stunting and anemia. SHINE therefore provides an opportunity to longitudinally evaluate EED in a well-characterized cohort of infants, using a panel of biomarkers along the hypothesized causal pathway. Our aims are to describe the evolution of EED during infancy, ascertain its contribution to stunting, and investigate the impact of the randomized interventions on the EED pathway. In this article, we describe current concepts of EED, challenges in defining the condition, and our approach to evaluating EED in the SHINE trial. PMID:26602300

  15. Bench-to-bedside review: The MET syndrome – the challenges of researching and adopting medical emergency teams

    PubMed Central

    Tee, Augustine; Calzavacca, Paolo; Licari, Elisa; Goldsmith, Donna; Bellomo, Rinaldo

    2008-01-01

    Studies of hospital performance highlight the problem of 'failure to rescue' in acutely ill patients. This is a deficiency strongly associated with serious adverse events, cardiac arrest, or death. Rapid response systems (RRSs) and their efferent arm, the medical emergency team (MET), provide early specialist critical care to patients affected by the 'MET syndrome': unequivocal physiological instability or significant hospital staff concern for patients in a non-critical care environment. This intervention aims to prevent serious adverse events, cardiac arrests, and unexpected deaths. Though clinically logical and relatively simple, its adoption poses major challenges. Furthermore, research about the effectiveness of RRS is difficult to conduct. Sceptics argue that inadequate evidence exists to support its widespread application. Indeed, supportive evidence is based on before-and-after studies, observational investigations, and inductive reasoning. However, implementing a complex intervention like RRS poses enormous logistic, political, cultural, and financial challenges. In addition, double-blinded randomised controlled trials of RRS are simply not possible. Instead, as in the case of cardiac arrest and trauma teams, change in practice may be slow and progressive, even in the absence of level I evidence. It appears likely that the accumulation of evidence from different settings and situations, though methodologically imperfect, will increase the rationale and logic of RRS. A conclusive randomised controlled trial is unlikely to occur. All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident. Arthur Schopenhauer (1788–1860), German philosopher PMID:18254927

  16. The Influence Paths of Emotion on the Occupational Safety of Rescuers Involved in Environmental Emergencies- Systematic Review Article

    PubMed Central

    LU, Jintao; YANG, Naiding; YE, Jinfu; WU, Haoran

    2014-01-01

    Abstract A detailed study and analysis of previous research has been carried out to illustrate the relationships between a range of environmental emergencies, and their effects on the emotional state of the rescuers involved in responding to them, by employing Pub Med, Science Direct, Web of Science, Google Scholar, CNKI and Scopus for required information with the several keywords “emergency rescue”, “occupational safety”, “natural disaster”, “emotional management”. The effect of the rescuers’ emotion on their occupational safety and immediate and long-term emotional behavior is then considered. From these considerations, we suggested four research propositions related to the emotional effects at both individual and group levels, and to the responsibilities of emergency response agencies in respect of ensuring the psychological and physical occupational safety of rescuers during and after environmental emergencies. An analysis framework is proposed which could be used to study the influence paths of these different aspects of emotional impact on a range of occupational safety issues for rescue workers. The authors believe that the conclusions drawn in this paper can provide a useful theoretical reference for decision-making related to the management and protection of the occupational safety of rescuers responding to natural disasters and environmental emergencies. PMID:26060714

  17. Environmental, health, and safety effects of engineered nanomaterials: challenges and research needs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fairbrother, Howard

    2010-04-01

    The number of technologies and consumer products that incorporate engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) has grown rapidly. Indeed, ENMs such as carbon nanotubes and nano-silver, are revolutionizing many commercial technologies and have already been incorporated into more than 800 commercial products, including polymer composites, cell phone batteries, sporting equipment and cosmetics. The global market for ENMs has grown steadily from 7.5 billion in 2003 to 12.7 billion in 2008. Over the next five years, their market value is expected to exceed $27 billion. This surge in demand has been responsible for a corresponding increase in the annual production rates of ENMs. For example, Bayer anticipates that single and multi-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNT and MWNT) production rates will reach 3,000 tons/yr by 2012. Inevitably, some of these synthetic materials will enter the environment either from incidental release during manufacture and transport, or following use and disposal. Consequently, intense scientific research is now being directed towards understanding the environmental, health and safety (EHS) risks posed by ENMs. I will highlight some of the key research challenges and needs in this area, include (i) developing structure-property relationships that will enable physicochemical properties of ENMs to be correlated with environmentally relevant behavior (e.g. colloidal properties, toxicity), (ii) determining the behavior of nanoproducts, and (iii) developing analytical techniques capable of detecting and quantifying the concentration of ENMs in the environment.

  18. THE EMERGING FOCUS ON LIFE-CYCLE ASSESSMENT IN THE U. S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY: JOURNAL ARTICLE

    EPA Science Inventory

    NRML-1126A Curran*, M.A. The Emerging Focus on Life-Cycle Assessment in the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency. 3rd Dixy Lee Ray memorial Sym, Washington, DC, 12/29-31/00. Techology: Journal of the Franklin Institute (Moghissi, A.A. (Ed.)) 8:287-290 (2002). EPA/600/J-02/239,...

  19. The Interface of Environmental and Humane Education as an Emerging and Relevant Dialogue: A Point of View from Brazil

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Castellano, Maria; Quirino de Luca, Andrea; Sorrentino, Marcos

    2011-01-01

    This article addresses the interface between environmental and humane education, as a theoretical and practical emerging field in Brazil. We begin by presenting conceptual similarities that, in our view, underpin and justify the need for a growing connection between the two fields of research and educational practice. We then describe an…

  20. Finding the forest in the trees: The challenge of combining diverse environmental data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1995-01-01

    It has become increasingly important to conduct interdisciplinary environmental research assessments, both nationally and internationally. For this reason, the Committee for a Pilot Study on Database Interfaces was charged to review and advise on data interfacing activities. The committee used six case studies (1) to identify and understand the most important problems associated with collecting, integrating, and analyzing environmental data from local to global spatial scales and over a very wide range of temporal scales; and (2) to elaborate the common barriers to interfacing data of disparate sources and types. Consistent with the committee's charge, the primary focus was the interfacing of geophysical and ecological data. The case studies used by the committee were: The Impact Assessment Project for Drought Early Warning in the Sahel, The National Acid Precipitation Assessment Program, The H.J. Andrew Experimental Forest Long-Term Ecological Research Site, The Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center, The First International Satellite Land Surface Climatology Project (ISLSCP) Field Experiment, and The California Cooperative Oceanic Fisheries Investigation. The committee derived a number of lessons from the case studies, and these lessons are summarized at the end of each case study and analyzed in the last chapter. Some are generic in nature; others are more specific to a discipline or project. The conclusions and recommendations are based on the committee's analysis of the case studies and additional research. They are organized according to four major areas of barriers or challenges to the effective interfacing of diverse environmental data. In the final section the committee offers a set of broadly applicable principles (Ten Keys to Success) that can be used by scientists and data managers in planning and conducting interfacing activities.

  1. Constraining peatland environmental change: exploiting the emerging eastern North American crypto-tephrostratigraphic record

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mackay, H.; Hughes, P. D.; Langdon, P.

    2013-12-01

    The relatively recent advances in tephrochronology have led to the investigation of non-visible (crypto) tephra horizons in sediment distal from volcanic origins. Such studies have been predominantly centered on western Europe; however the potential of North American cryptotephras is rapidly emerging. This not only facilitates the construction of more robust chronologies in areas thought to be outside the scope of this technique, but also the provision of isochrons enhances comparisons of environmental spatial synchronicity across sites and regions. Four tephrostratigraphies across a transect of peatlands in Maine, Nova Scotia and south-western Newfoundland have been constructed. A total of 18 horizons were detected over the last ca. 4000 years, the preliminary geochemical analysis of which suggest that all constrained eruptions originate from the Cascade Range and Alaska ca. 5000-6000 km to the west of the sites. These results complement the one existing record from eastern Newfoundland (Pyne-O'Donnell et al. 2012), facilitating the extension of the late Holocene crypto-tephrostratigraphic framework for the eastern seaboard of North America. Peatlands are considered to be ideal archives for preserving tephrostratigraphies since cryptotephra horizons are often present in discrete layers, thought to represent primary airfall. Such preservation in this setting is critiqued here, assisted by radiocarbon measurements. The tephra horizons are used as pinning-points between records to address the wider aim of the study: to examine the terrestrial manifestations of late Holocene climatic change across an eastern North American climatic gradient. Of particular interest are the temporal and spatial characteristics of changes in peatland accumulation and reconstructed water table depth during the most dominant late Holocene climatic perturbations: the Medieval Climatic Anomaly and the Little Ice Age. This time period is constrained by the most dominant eruption, White River

  2. Challenges for a cross-disciplinary geoarchaeology: The intersection between environmental history and geomorphology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Butzer, Karl W.

    2008-10-01

    Geoarchaeology is a growing subfield of cross-disciplinary research at the intersection between geomorphology, environmental history, and archaeology. This prospective essay does not aim to analyze the nature or evolution of geoarachaeology, or to review available techniques and methods. Instead it addresses challenges. Exciting challenges confront geoarchaeology in the form of persistent problems that demand satisfactory solutions, despite improving skills and innovative technologies. Drawing from the full record of human history, a number of practical issues can be highlighted to explicate these challenges: Open-air archaeological sites are the main object of study for the Early to Mid-Pleistocene, even though they represent open systems that raise fundamental questions about archaeo-taphonomic integrity. How were sites buried and then modified by selective preservation, horizontal or vertical disturbance, and the role of carnivores? Is it possible to determine the degree to which such sites accurately record prehistoric human behavior, prior to the Late Pleistocene when hearths and living structures lend better definition to occupation surfaces? Can non-primary open-air sites also shed light on human activities and environmental history? Cave sites have long been favored by archaeologists because of the impression that they represent relatively complete and undisturbed archaeostratigraphic sequences. But serious problems also exist here in regard to the nature of accumulation and the sources of mineral and biogenic sediments in what were open systems, liable to disturbance, despite comparatively low-energy processes. Less familiar are urban and other architectural sites, where processes of formation and degradation mimic natural sedimentation and erosion. Such a geoarchaeology can be highly informative for urban processes, demographic cycles, or the intersection between sites and their surrounding landscapes. Spatial components of geoarchaeological research need

  3. Environmental flows allocation in river basins: Exploring allocation challenges and options in the Great Ruaha River catchment in Tanzania

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kashaigili, Japhet J.; Kadigi, Reuben M. J.; Lankford, Bruce A.; Mahoo, Henry F.; Mashauri, Damus A.

    Provision for environmental flows is currently becoming a central issue in the debate of integrated water resources management in river basins. However, the theories, concepts and practical applications are still new in most developing countries with challenging situations arising in complex basins with multiple water uses and users and increasing water demands and conflicts exemplified by the Great Ruaha River catchment in Tanzania. The research has shown that a flow of 0.5-1 m 3/s for Great Ruaha River through the Ruaha National Park is required to sustain the environment in the park during the dry season. But a question is how can this be achieved? This paper reviews the challenges and suggests some options for achieving environmental water allocation in river basins. The following challenges are identified: (a) the concept of environmental flows is still new and not well known, (b) there is limited data and understanding of the hydrologic and ecological linkages, (c) there is insufficient specialist knowledge and legislative support, (d) there are no storage reservoirs for controlled environmental water releases, and (e) there are contradicting policies and institutions on environmental issues. Notwithstanding these challenges, this paper identifies the options towards meeting environmental water allocation and management: (a) conducting purposive training and awareness creation to communities, politicians, government officials and decision makers on environmental flows, (b) capacity building in environmental flows and setting-up multidisciplinary environmental flows team with stakeholders involvement, (c) facilitating the development of effective local institutions supported by legislation, (d) water harvesting and storage and proportional flow structures design to allow water for the environment, and (e) harmonizing policies and reform in water utilization and water rights to accommodate and ensure water for the environment.

  4. Evaluation of sensor types and environmental controls on mapping biomass of coastal marsh emergent vegetation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Byrd, Kristin B.; O'Connell, Jessica L.; Di Tommaso, Stefania; Kelly, Maggi

    2014-01-01

    There is a need to quantify large-scale plant productivity in coastal marshes to understand marsh resilience to sea level rise, to help define eligibility for carbon offset credits, and to monitor impacts from land use, eutrophication and contamination. Remote monitoring of aboveground biomass of emergent wetland vegetation will help address this need. Differences in sensor spatial resolution, bandwidth, temporal frequency and cost constrain the accuracy of biomass maps produced for management applications. In addition the use of vegetation indices to map biomass may not be effective in wetlands due to confounding effects of water inundation on spectral reflectance. To address these challenges, we used partial least squares regression to select optimal spectral features in situ and with satellite reflectance data to develop predictive models of aboveground biomass for common emergent freshwater marsh species, Typha spp. and Schoenoplectus acutus, at two restored marshes in the Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta, California, USA. We used field spectrometer data to test model errors associated with hyperspectral narrowbands and multispectral broadbands, the influence of water inundation on prediction accuracy, and the ability to develop species specific models. We used Hyperion data, Digital Globe World View-2 (WV-2) data, and Landsat 7 data to scale up the best statistical models of biomass. Field spectrometer-based models of the full dataset showed that narrowband reflectance data predicted biomass somewhat, though not significantly better than broadband reflectance data [R2 = 0.46 and percent normalized RMSE (%RMSE) = 16% for narrowband models]. However hyperspectral first derivative reflectance spectra best predicted biomass for plots where water levels were less than 15 cm (R2 = 0.69, %RMSE = 12.6%). In species-specific models, error rates differed by species (Typha spp.: %RMSE = 18.5%; S. acutus: %RMSE = 24.9%), likely due to the more vertical structure and

  5. Environmental heat stress modulates thyroid status and its response to repeated endotoxin challenge in steers.

    PubMed

    Kahl, S; Elsasser, T H; Rhoads, R P; Collier, R J; Baumgard, L H

    2015-07-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate in cattle, the effects of acute exposure to a heat stress (HS) environment on the status of the pituitary (thyrotropin, TSH)-thyroid (thyroxine, T4)-peripheral tissue T4 deiodination (type 1 5'-deiodinase [D1]; triiodothyronine [T3]; reverse-triiodothyronine [rT3]) axis, and the further response of this pituitary-thyroid-peripheral tissue axis (PTTA) to perturbation caused by the induction of the proinflammatory innate immune state provoked by the administration of gram-negative bacteria endotoxin (lipopolysaccharide [LPS]). Ten steers (318 ± 49 kg body weight) housed in controlled environment chambers were subjected to either a thermoneutral (TN: constant 19°C) or HS temperature conditions (cyclical daily temperatures: 32.2°C-40.0°C) for a total period of 9 d. To minimize the effects of altered plane of nutrition due to HS, steers in TN were pair-fed to animals in HS conditions. Steers received 2 LPS challenges 3 d apart (LPS1 and LPS2; 0.2 μg/kg body weight, intravenously, Escherichia coli 055:B5) with the first challenge administered on day 4 relative to the start of the environmental conditioning. Jugular blood samples were collected at 0, 1, 2, 4, 7, and 24 h relative to the start of each LPS challenge. Plasma TSH, T4, T3, and rT3 were measured by radioimmunoassay. Liver D1 activity was measured in biopsy samples collected before the LPS1 (0 h) and 24 h after LPS2. Before the start of LPS1, HS decreased (P < 0.01 vs TN) plasma TSH (40%), T4 (45.4%), and T3 (25.9%), but did not affect rT3 concentrations. In TN steers, the LPS1 challenge decreased (P < 0.01 vs 0 h) plasma concentrations of TSH between 1 and 7 h and T4 and T3 at 7 and 24 h. In HS steers, plasma TSH concentrations were decreased at 2 h only (P < 0.05), whereas plasma T3 was decreased at 7 and 24 h (P < 0.01). Whereas plasma T4 concentrations were already depressed in HS steers at 0 h, LPS1 did not further affect the levels. Plasma rT3 concentrations

  6. Environmental dilemma game to establish a sustainable society dealing with an emergent value system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanimoto, Jun

    2005-01-01

    To induce whether we can obtain a sustainable society by shifting our paradigm from the materialistic to the eco-conscientious, we established a multi-agent simulation model. The model primarily featured a dilemma structure encouraged by a conflict between each agent's private desire to earn more and the need for environmental conservation. Another important feature is that the model has two evolutionary layers. The subordinate layer is a learning system comprised of a finite state machine (FSM) and a genetic algorithm (GA) primarily, which is carried with each individual agent to determine his/her next behavior and how much he/she must earn to maximize an individual fitness function. The supra layer is the so-called value system, the gene pool of which is shared within the society. The value system stipulates an agent's fitness function, which in turn affects the agent's behavior. The value system of each agent was set up to be entirely ego-oriented at the beginning of the simulation episode. A numerical experiment based on the model reveals a scene in which, under a certain condition related to assumptions of the value system, a group of agents undergoes a paradigm shift from the ego-oriented materialism to the eco-conscious sustainable society. The key condition is a latent existence of several values that ultimately lead to sustainability, even though they do not work at all at the beginning of the episode. In terms of the evolutionary game theory, this implies that changing game structure on the way of a simulation episode by transforming the fitness function seems to be much powerful measures for the emergent collective cooperation among the agents than ordinal options to support cooperation. In addition, we made a detailed analysis on how assumed agents have obtained a sustainable value system. Each agent has an individual decision-making process based on the input with a learning mechanism. We focus here on two types of learning system, the finite state

  7. Challenges and opportunities offered by Scottish Freshwater Pearl Mussels as 'continuous data loggers' of environmental data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGowan, Alistair; Thomas, Rhian

    2014-05-01

    The freshwater pearl mussel (Margaritifera margaritifera Linnaeus [1758], hereafter FPM) presents challenges and opportunities for conservation palaeobiology. FPMs preserve the whole of their life history of growth in their shells, providing an archive of time series of abiotic environmental data and the response of individual mussels to these factors. FPMs are long-lived, routinely living for 60 to 80 years, sometimes for over a century. Previous work has identified annual, seasonal and, exceptionally, daily growth increments. With careful sampling and interpretation, the shells of dead mussels have the potential to extend the records of air and water temperature, nutrient flux and flood and drought cycles for individual catchments far beyond currently available instrumental and written records. As this information is preserved in a living organism that responds to some of these variables, variation in the width of these growth increments can inform us about how these factors influence the growth of FPMs. As the species does not decouple growth and reproductive effort nor does fertility decline with age, unlike many other taxa, this allows estimation of the relative reproductive effort in a year. Such data are difficult to obtain by other means. However, making fullest use of this significant resource presents several challenges that require co-operation between Earth scientists, conservation biologists and managers. Our present challenge of FPMs is to understand the age-profile of dead shells. The studies of the growth increments we have made to date are 'floating' chronologies. We know the age at death of the individuals, but not the absolute age of death. With common species, the issue of floating chronologies can be resolved by harvesting live individuals, which will then have a known year of death. Given the threat that FPMs are under, of both local and global extinction, this is not a viable option without demonstrating significant utility of conservation

  8. Food-borne diseases - the challenges of 20 years ago still persist while new ones continue to emerge.

    PubMed

    Newell, Diane G; Koopmans, Marion; Verhoef, Linda; Duizer, Erwin; Aidara-Kane, Awa; Sprong, Hein; Opsteegh, Marieke; Langelaar, Merel; Threfall, John; Scheutz, Flemming; van der Giessen, Joke; Kruse, Hilde

    2010-05-30

    The burden of diseases caused by food-borne pathogens remains largely unknown. Importantly data indicating trends in food-borne infectious intestinal disease is limited to a few industrialised countries, and even fewer pathogens. It has been predicted that the importance of diarrhoeal disease, mainly due to contaminated food and water, as a cause of death will decline worldwide. Evidence for such a downward trend is limited. This prediction presumes that improvements in the production and retail of microbiologically safe food will be sustained in the developed world and, moreover, will be rolled out to those countries of the developing world increasingly producing food for a global market. In this review evidence is presented to indicate that the microbiological safety of food remains a dynamic situation heavily influenced by multiple factors along the food chain from farm to fork. Sustaining food safety standards will depend on constant vigilance maintained by monitoring and surveillance but, with the rising importance of other food-related issues, such as food security, obesity and climate change, competition for resources in the future to enable this may be fierce. In addition the pathogen populations relevant to food safety are not static. Food is an excellent vehicle by which many pathogens (bacteria, viruses/prions and parasites) can reach an appropriate colonisation site in a new host. Although food production practices change, the well-recognised food-borne pathogens, such as Salmonella spp. and Escherichia coli, seem able to evolve to exploit novel opportunities, for example fresh produce, and even generate new public health challenges, for example antimicrobial resistance. In addition, previously unknown food-borne pathogens, many of which are zoonotic, are constantly emerging. Current understanding of the trends in food-borne diseases for bacterial, viral and parasitic pathogens has been reviewed. The bacterial pathogens are exemplified by those well

  9. Successes and Challenges of Interprofessional Physiologic Birth and Obstetric Emergency Simulations in a Nurse-Midwifery Education Program.

    PubMed

    Shaw-Battista, Jenna; Belew, Cynthia; Anderson, Deborah; van Schaik, Sandrijn

    2015-01-01

    This article describes childbirth simulation design and implementation within the nurse-midwifery education program at the University of California, San Francisco. Nurse-midwife and obstetrician faculty coordinators were supported by faculty from multiple professions and specialties in curriculum review and simulation development and implementation. The primary goal of the resulting technology-enhanced simulations of normal physiologic birth and obstetric emergencies was to assist learners' development of interprofessional competencies related to communication, teamwork, and patient-centered care. Trainees included nurse-midwifery students; residents in obstetrics, pediatrics, and family medicine; medical students; and advanced practice nursing students in pediatrics. The diversity of participant types and learning levels provided benefits and presented challenges to effective scenario-based simulation design among numerous other theoretical and logistical considerations. This project revealed practical solutions informed by emerging health sciences and education research literature, faculty experience, and formal course evaluations by learners. Best practices in simulation development and implementation were incorporated, including curriculum revision grounded in needs assessment, case- and event-based clinical scenarios, optimization of fidelity, and ample time for participant debriefing. Adequate preparation and attention to detail increased the immersive experience and benefits of simulation. Suggestions for fidelity enhancement are provided with examples of simulation scenarios, a timeline for preparations, and discussion topics to facilitate meaningful learning by maternity and newborn care providers and trainees in clinical and academic settings. Pre- and postsimulation measurements of knowledge, skills, and attitudes are ongoing and not reported. This article is part of a special series of articles that address midwifery innovations in clinical practice

  10. Towards integrated water resources management in Colombia: challenges and opportunities for spatial environmental planning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salazar, Sergio; Hernández, Sebastián

    2015-04-01

    actions to a water culture and water use conflict management. With the premise that "access to information and research are crucial for the integrated water resources management", different planning tools have been implemented in several case studies, considering several hydro-climatic, bio-geographic and socio-cultural contexts. It was supported with a transdisciplinary approach (integrated visions from disciplines such as hydrology, biology, ecology, pedology, geomorphology, geology, economy and social sciences among others) with a key protagonist: the technical and scientific capacity available in the country. From this practical experiences at different spatial scales, we have identified a battery of key challenges: i) extend the spatial and temporal coverage of hydrometeorological and water quality monitoring networks at regional scale; ii) expand the knowledge base of aquatic and transition ecosystem as well as the environmental baseline from regional to local scales; iii) researches about the state of subterranean water resources and their interactions with lotic and lentic systems; iv) move towards the establishment of decision support systems that integrate policy objectives at different scales; v) strengthening technical and scientific capacity of the country expanding academic and research public offer; vi) unifying technical criteria and standards environment management policy; vii) institutional architecture redesign. If there is a political and socio-economical consensus about the urgency to move towards the key aspect summarized here, Colombian people will be giving the definitive step towards integrated water resources management as a cornerstone of spatial environmental planning and water governance. Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this abstract are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official position of the Colombian Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development or any agency of the Colombian government.

  11. Application of the Bulgarian emergency response system in case of nuclear accident in environmental assessment study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Syrakov, Dimiter; Veleva, Blagorodka; Georgievs, Emilia; Prodanova, Maria; Slavov, Kiril; Kolarova, Maria

    2014-05-01

    The development of the Bulgarian Emergency Response System (BERS) for short term forecast in case of accidental radioactive releases to the atmosphere has been started in the mid 1990's [1]. BERS comprises of two main parts - operational and accidental, for two regions 'Europe' and 'Northern Hemisphere'. The operational part runs automatically since 2001 using the 72 hours meteorological forecast from DWD Global model, resolution in space of 1.5o and in time - 12 hours. For specified Nuclear power plants (NPPs), 3 days trajectories are calculated and presented on NIMH's specialized Web-site (http://info.meteo.bg/ews/). The accidental part is applied when radioactive releases are reported or in case of emergency exercises. BERS is based on numerical weather forecast information and long-range dispersion model accounting for the transport, dispersion, and radioactive transformations of pollutants. The core of the accidental part of the system is the Eulerian 3D dispersion model EMAP calculating concentration and deposition fields [2]. The system is upgraded with a 'dose calculation module' for estimation of the prognostic dose fields of 31 important radioactive gaseous and aerosol pollutants. The prognostic doses significant for the early stage of a nuclear accident are calculated as follows: the effective doses from external irradiation (air submersion + ground shinning); effective dose from inhalation; summarized effective dose and absorbed thyroid dose [3]. The output is given as 12, 24, 36, 48, 60 and 72 hours prognostic dose fields according the updated meteorology. The BERS was upgraded to simulate the dispersion of nuclear materials from Fukushima NPP [4], and results were presented in NIMH web-site. In addition BERS took part in the respective ENSEMBLE exercises to model 131I and 137Cs in Fukushima source term. In case of governmental request for expertise BERS was applied for environmental impact assessment of hypothetical accidental transboundary

  12. How to Visualize and Communicate Challenges in Climate and Environmental Sciences?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vicari, R.; Schertzer, D. J. M.; Deutsch, J. C.

    2014-12-01

    The challenges of climate and environmental sciences need a renewed dialogue with a large spectrum of stakeholders, ranging from the general publics to specialists. This requires a better use of sophisticated visualization techniques to both forward the information and to follow the corresponding flow of information. A particular case of interest is the question of resilience to extreme weather events that also relies on increasing awareness of urban communities. This research looks at the development of exploration techniques of unstructured Big Data. Indeed access to information on environmental and climate sciences has hugely increased in terms of variety and quantity, as a consequence of different factors, among others the development of public relations by research institutes and the pervasive role of digital media (Bucchi 2013; Trench 2008). We are left with unthinkable amounts of information from blogs, social networks postings, public speeches, press releases, articles, etc. It is possible now to explore and visualize patterns followed by digital information with the support of automated analysis tools. On the other hand these techniques can provide important insights on how different techniques of visual communication can impact on urban resilience to extreme weather. The selected case studies correspond to several research projects under the umbrella of the Chair "Hydrology for resilient cities" aimed to develop and test new solutions in urban hydrology that will contribute to the resilience of our cities to extreme weather. These research projects - ranging from regional projects (e.g. RadX@IdF), European projects (e.g. Blue Green Dream and RainGain), to worldwide collaborations (e.g. TOMACS) - include awareness raising and capacity building activities aimed to foster cooperation between scientists, professionals, and beneficiaries. This presentation will explore how visualization techniques can be used in the above mentioned projects in order to support

  13. Extent of fungal growth on fiberglass duct liners with and without biocides under challenging environmental conditions.

    PubMed

    Samimi, Behzad S; Ross, Kristen

    2003-03-01

    Eight brands of fiberglass duct liners, including three that contained biocides, were exposed to challenging environmental conditions that would promote fungal growth. Twenty-four rectangular sheet metal ducts in three groups of eight ducts per group were lined with the eight selected liners. Each group of ducts was exposed to one of the three test conditions within an environmental chamber for a period of 15 days. These conditions were a) 75 percent RH, b) 75 percent RH plus water spray, c) 75 percent RH plus dry nutrient, and d) 75 percent RH plus water plus nutrient. Viable spores of Aspergillus niger were aerosolized into each duct as seed. On the 16th day, air and surface samples for fungal spores were collected from inside ducts. The results of air sampling using N6 sampler and visual inspection indicated that two out of three biocide-containing liners, Permacote and Toughgard, inhibited fungal growth but only under condition A. The third biocide-containing liner, Aeroflex Plus, was effective even when it was wet (conditions A and B). All three biocide-containing liners failed to inhibit fungal growth under conditions C and D. Among the five other types of liners that did not contain biocides, ATCO Flex with a smooth Mylar coating was more preferable, exhibiting lower fungal activity during conditions A, B, and C. All liners failed under condition D when nutrient and water were added together. Surface sampling using adhesive tape failed to produce representative results, apparently due to rough/porous surface of duct liners. It was concluded that duct liners with biocide treatment could be less promoting to microbial growth under high humidity as long as their surfaces remain clean and water-free. A liner with an impermeable and smooth surface seems to be less subject to microbial growth under most conditions than biocide-containing liners having porous and/or rough surfaces. PMID:12573965

  14. Heat Stress Illness Emergency Department Visits in National Environmental Public Health Tracking States, 2005-2010.

    PubMed

    Fechter-Leggett, Ethan D; Vaidyanathan, Ambarish; Choudhary, Ekta

    2016-02-01

    Variability of heat stress illness (HSI) by urbanicity and climate region has rarely been considered in previous HSI studies. We investigated temporal and geographic trends in HSI emergency department (ED) visits in CDC Environmental Public Health Tracking Network (Tracking) states for 2005-2010. We obtained county-level HSI ED visit data for 14 Tracking states. We used the National Center for Health Statistics Urban-Rural Classification Scheme to categorize counties by urbanicity as (1) large central metropolitan (LCM), (2) large fringe metropolitan, (3) small-medium metropolitan, or (4) nonmetropolitan (NM). We also assigned counties to one of six US climate regions. Negative binomial regression was used to examine trends in HSI ED visits over time across all counties and by urbanicity for each climate region, adjusting for pertinent variables. During 2005-2010, there were 98,462 HSI ED visits in the 14 states. ED visits for HSI decreased 3.0% (p < 0.01) per year. Age-adjusted incidence rates of HSI ED visits increased from most urban to most rural. Overall, ED visits were significantly higher for NM areas (IRR = 1.41, p < 0.01) than for LCM areas. The same pattern was observed in all six climate regions; compared with LCM, NM areas had from 14 to 90% more ED visits for HSI. These findings of significantly increased HSI ED visit rates in more rural settings suggest a need to consider HSI ED visit variability by county urbanicity and climate region when designing and implementing local HSI preventive measures and interventions. PMID:26205070

  15. Emerging and re-emerging infections.

    PubMed

    Lim, V K

    1999-06-01

    An emerging infection is defined as an infection which has newly appeared in a population while a re-emerging infection is one which has existed in the past but its incidence is rapidly increasing. The reasons for the emergence and re-emergence of infections are not well understood but appear to be associated with factors that involve the pathogen, the host and the environment. These factors are often inter-related and act together in a complex manner to bring about changes in patterns of infection. Pathogens are extremely resourceful and possess mechanisms to adapt to new hosts and environments as well as to acquire new virulence traits. Host factors include herd immunity, social behaviour and demographics. Environmental factors like the climate, deforestation and new technologies have an impact on the emergence of infections. The challenge is to contain an infection when it emerges but more importantly to prevent its emergence in the first place. As the emergence of an infection is complex and multifactorial, a multidisciplinary approach is required. Health based strategies alone are insufficient. Social, economic and environmental measures and the political will to implement appropriate policies are equally important. PMID:10972048

  16. Emerging geriatric challenge.

    PubMed

    Dhar, H L

    2005-10-01

    India is a vast country with diversity, both physical and cultural. 72% of World's second largest population live in rural experiencing varying degrees of socioeconomic change. However, there is no nationwide registry of older people and exact statistics about elderly population is not available. Community-based data on morbidity and disability are also not available. India is one of the few countries in the world where men out number women at all ages till about 70 years and only in very old age (80+) there are more women than men. One of the main social effect of extension of life in later years is the extended period of widowhood for women mainly due to cultural practice of men marrying younger women and widow marriage as well as divorce are uncommon. Much progress has been made in the health care services in the last 50 years giving much emphasis to mother and child programme with special emphasis on controlling population. But elderly population has been neglected, there is no separate ward for elderly in hospitals, no specialized courses in the Universities for training doctors and nurses for elderly care. Recently, Indian Medical Association has organized an ambitious project for rural elderly with emphasis on Geriatric care. Still recently, emphasis has been given for developing infrastructural facilities including creating training, courses on Geriatric Medicine and integrating with alternative system for better care of elderly. However, due to increasing awareness of policy makers to multiple issues related to aging, some progress has been made like old age pension scheme, income tax rebate for elderly, old homes and day care centers and law to help retired citizens in evicting tenants etc. but environment is not as elderly-friendly as in European countries, as the State is not likely to have adequate resources in the presence of other priorities in the country. PMID:16459531

  17. Hands-On Activities and Challenge Tests in Agricultural and Environmental Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poudel, D. D.; Vincent, L. M.; Anzalone, C.; Huner, J.; Wollard, D.; Clement, T.; DeRamus, A.; Blakewood, G.

    2005-01-01

    Many agricultural and environmental problems are interrelated and overlapping. Several agencies, including nonprofit organizations, have developed programs to educate schoolchildren about agricultural and environmental issues; however, programs that integrate both agricultural and environmental learning, especially among middle and high school…

  18. An alternate method for extracting DNA from environmentally challenged teeth for improved DNA analysis.

    PubMed

    Hughes-Stamm, Sheree; Warnke, Frauke; van Daal, Angela

    2016-01-01

    A grinding-free method to extract DNA from teeth via a direct minimal-invasive retrograde approach to the pulp cavity and dentine was compared to a standard grinding/pulverisation method. This alternate method uses endodontic dental files to access the root canals and pulp cavity for tissue and dentine harvest via the apical end of the roots and avoids mechanical damage to the crown and root morphology. In contrast, other methods require pulverisation of the whole root or tooth, transection or destruction of the occlusal surface to gain access to the DNA in the root canals and pulp chamber. This study compared two methods for preparing dentine powder from the roots of environmentally challenged teeth for forensic DNA analysis. We found that although the filing method was more laborious, and produced less dentine powder, the amount of amplifiable DNA per milligram of powder was substantially higher with the filing method compared to grinding the entire root. In addition, the number of short tandem repeat (STR) alleles detected and the peak height ratios of the STR profiles were notably higher. Although several other methods of extracting DNA-rich tissue from the pulp chamber of teeth have previously been reported, the method presented in this study is minimally invasive, thereby allowing the preservation of tooth and crown morphology. PMID:26832373

  19. Challenges for environmental epidemiology research: are biomarker concentrations altered by kidney function or urine concentration adjustment?

    PubMed

    Weaver, Virginia M; Kotchmar, Dennis J; Fadrowski, Jeffrey J; Silbergeld, Ellen K

    2016-01-01

    Biomonitoring has become a standard approach for exposure assessment in occupational and environmental epidemiology. The use of biological effect markers to identify early adverse changes in target organs has also become widely adopted. However, the potential for kidney function to affect biomarker levels in the body and the optimal approach to adjustment of biomarker concentrations in spot urine samples for hydration status are two important but underappreciated challenges associated with biomarker use. Several unexpected findings, such as positive associations between urine nephrotoxicant levels and estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), have been reported recently in research using biomarkers. These and other findings, discussed herein, suggest an impact of kidney glomerular filtration or tubule processing on biomarker levels. This is more commonly raised in the context of decreased kidney filtration, traditionally referred to as reverse causality; however, recent data suggest that populations with normal kidney filtration may be affected as well. Misclassification bias would result if biomarkers reflect kidney function as well as either exposures or early biological effect outcomes. Furthermore, urine biomarker associations with eGFR that differ markedly by approach used to adjust for urine concentration have been reported. Associations between urine measures commonly used for this adjustment, such as urine creatinine, and specific research outcomes could alter observed biomarker associations with outcomes. Research recommendations to address the potential impact of kidney function and hydration status adjustment on biomarkers are provided, including a range of approaches to study design, exposure and outcome assessment, and adjustment for urine concentration. PMID:25736163

  20. W(h)ither the Oracle? Cognitive biases and other human challenges of integrated environmental modeling

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Glynn, Pierre D.

    2014-01-01

    Integrated environmental modeling (IEM) can organize and increase our knowledge of the complex, dynamic ecosystems that house our natural resources and control the quality of our environments. Human behavior, however, must be taken into account. Human biases/heuristics reflect adaptation over our evolutionary past to frequently experienced situations that affected our survival and that provided sharply distinguished feedbacks at the level of the individual. Unfortunately, human behavior is not adapted to the more diffusely experienced, less frequently encountered, problems and issues that IEM typically seeks to address in the simulation of natural resources and environments. While seeking inspiration from the prophetic traditions of the Oracle of Delphi, several human biases are identified that may affect how the science base of IEM is assembled, and how IEM results are interpreted and used. These biases are supported by personal observations, and by the findings of behavioral scientists. A process for critical analysis is proposed that solicits explicit accounting and cognizance of potential human biases. A number of suggestions are made to address the human challenges of IEM, in addition to maintaining attitudes of watchful humility, open-mindedness, honesty, and transparent accountability. These include creating a new area of study in the behavioral biogeosciences, using structured processes for engaging the modeling and stakeholder community in IEM, and using “red teams” to increase resilience of IEM constructs and use.

  1. Comparison of nasal steroid with antihistamine in prophylactic treatment against pollinosis using an environmental challenge chamber.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Heizaburo; Yonekura, Syuji; Sakurai, Daiju; Katada, Koji; Inamine, Ayako; Hanazawa, Toyoyuki; Horiguchi, Shigetoshi; Okamoto, Yoshitaka

    2012-01-01

    Environmental challenge chambers (ECC) have been used to expose people to pollen allergens within a stable atmosphere and to examine the efficacy of treatment. Although pollinosis is one of the typical IgE-mediated type I allergic diseases, allergic inflammation is thought to contribute to the fundamental pathogenesis and prophylactic treatment may reduce exacerbations of pollinosis. The purpose of this study was to compare the efficacy of prophylactic treatment with nasal steroid (mometasone furoate nasal spray) or an antihistamine (fexofenadine) in the control of cedar pollinosis using the ECC. In a randomized, double-blind two-way crossover study, 48 patients received nasal steroid or antihistamine for 7 consecutive days (days 1-7). On day 8, patients were exposed to cedar pollen (8000 grains/m(3)) in the ECC for 3 hours. Nasal symptoms induced by pollen exposure were assessed. Total nasal symptom scores (TNSSs) during the exposure in the ECC were not significantly different between the antihistamine and the nasal steroid groups. Nasal symptoms induced by pollen exposure using the ECC persisted for up to 3 days. TNSSs after pollen exposure on days 8-11 were significantly lower in the nasal steroid group compared with the antihistamine group. Prophylactic treatment with nasal steroid is more effective than antihistamine against pollinosis, particularly in the late phase. Clinical trial registration JAPIC CTI 101182 (www.clinicaltrials.jp/user/ctiMain_e.jsp). PMID:23026181

  2. Livestock waste treatment systems of the future: A challenge to environmental quality, food safety, and sustainability. OECD Workshop

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This Special Issue of Bioresource Technology is dedicated to selected contributions presented at the international Workshop: “Livestock waste treatment systems of the future: A challenge to environmental quality, food safety, and sustainability,” held 2-4 April, 2008, in Florence, South Carolina (US...

  3. Correlates of Sense of Control among Older Korean-American Immigrants: Financial Status, Physical Health Constraints, and Environmental Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jang, Yuri; Kim, Giyeon; Chiriboga, David A.

    2006-01-01

    Responding to the need for more research on minority older populations, the present study assessed sense of control among older Korean-American immigrants. The association of sense of control with financial status, physical health constraints, and environmental challenges was examined with a sample of 230 older Korean-Americans (M[age] = 69.8,…

  4. Emerging proteomic technologies for elucidating context-dependent cellular signaling events: A big challenge of tiny proportions.

    PubMed

    Parker, Sarah J; Raedschelders, Koen; Van Eyk, Jennifer E

    2015-05-01

    Aberrant cell signaling events either drive or compensate for nearly all pathologies. A thorough description and quantification of maladaptive signaling flux in disease is a critical step in drug development, and complex proteomic approaches can provide valuable mechanistic insights. Traditional proteomics-based signaling analyses rely heavily on in vitro cellular monoculture. The characterization of these simplified systems generates a rich understanding of the basic components and complex interactions of many signaling networks, but they cannot capture the full complexity of the microenvironments in which pathologies are ultimately made manifest. Unfortunately, techniques that can directly interrogate signaling in situ often yield mass-limited starting materials that are incompatible with traditional proteomics workflows. This review provides an overview of established and emerging techniques that are applicable to context-dependent proteomics. Analytical approaches are illustrated through recent proteomics-based studies in which selective sample acquisition strategies preserve context-dependent information, and where the challenge of minimal starting material is met by optimized sensitivity and coverage. This review is organized into three major technological themes: (i) LC methods in line with MS; (ii) antibody-based approaches; (iii) MS imaging with a discussion of data integration and systems modeling. Finally, we conclude with future perspectives and implications of context-dependent proteomics. PMID:25545106

  5. Emerging proteomic technologies for elucidating context-dependent cellular signaling events: A big challenge of tiny proportions

    PubMed Central

    Parker, Sarah J; Raedschelders, Koen; Van Eyk, Jennifer E

    2015-01-01

    Aberrant cell signaling events either drive or compensate for nearly all pathologies. A thorough description and quantification of maladaptive signaling flux in disease is a critical step in drug development, and complex proteomic approaches can provide valuable mechanistic insights. Traditional proteomics-based signaling analyses rely heavily on in vitro cellular monoculture. The characterization of these simplified systems generates a rich understanding of the basic components and complex interactions of many signaling networks, but they cannot capture the full complexity of the microenvironments in which pathologies are ultimately made manifest. Unfortunately, techniques that can directly interrogate signaling in situ often yield mass-limited starting materials that are incompatible with traditional proteomics workflows. This review provides an overview of established and emerging techniques that are applicable to context-dependent proteomics. Analytical approaches are illustrated through recent proteomics-based studies in which selective sample acquisition strategies preserve context-dependent information, and where the challenge of minimal starting material is met by optimized sensitivity and coverage. This review is organized into three major technological themes: (1) LC methods inline with mass spectrometry; (2) Antibody-based approaches; (3) MS Imaging with a discussion of data integration and systems modeling. Finally, we conclude with future perspectives and implications of context-dependent proteomics. PMID:25545106

  6. Use of multisensor fusion technology to meet the challenges of emerging EO and RF threats to a combat aircraft

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shukla, Arvind K.; Parthasarathy, T.; Rao, P. N. A. P.

    2003-04-01

    The pilot on-board a combat aircraft encounters during any mission a dynamically varying threat environment of diverse EO and RF threats. Different sensors are carried on-board the aircraft to combat these threats. However, these sensors have their own limitations and no single sensor is able to perform in all kinds of situations. In addition, the technological advances in the threat scenario - in terms of higher speeds, small signatures and multimode guidance - and increased complex threats in the battlefield leading to generation of large amount of data input to the pilot make his decision making task very difficult due to increased workload. These challenges can be efficiently handled by deployment of a system on-board the aircraft with a comprehensive goal of autonomous target detection and tracking, situation and threat assessment and decision making based on multi-sensor data fusion techniques. In this paper, major emerging EO and RF threats for a combat aircraft and some important EO and RF sensors on-board the aircraft have been discussed. A design approach for the development of a multi-sensor data fusion system for a combat aircraft to provide better threat assessment than that provided by any single stand alone sensor has also been presented.

  7. Utilizing hydropower for load balancing non-storable renewable energy sources - technical and environmental challenges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alfredsen, K. T.; Killingtveit, A.

    2011-12-01

    About 99% of the total energy production in Norway comes from hydropower, and the total production of about 120 TWh makes Norway Europe's largest hydropower producer. Most hydropower systems in Norway are based on high-head plants with mountain storage reservoirs and tunnels transporting water from the reservoirs to the power plants. In total, Norwegian reservoirs contributes around 50% of the total energy storage capacity in Europe. Current strategies to reduce emission of greenhouse gases from energy production involve increased focus on renewable energy sources, e.g. the European Union's 202020 goal in which renewable energy sources should be 20% of the total energy production by 2020. To meet this goal new renewable energy installations must be developed on a large scale in the coming years, and wind power is the main focus for new developments. Hydropower can contribute directly to increase renewable energy through new development or extensions to existing systems, but maybe even more important is the potential to use hydropower systems with storage for load balancing in a system with increased amount of non-storable renewable energies. Even if new storage technologies are under development, hydro storage is the only technology available on a large scale and the most economical feasible alternative. In this respect the Norwegian system has a high potential both through direct use of existing reservoirs and through an increased development of pump storage plants utilizing surplus wind energy to pump water and then producing during periods with low wind input. Through cables to Europe, Norwegian hydropower could also provide balance power for the North European market. Increased peaking and more variable operation of the current hydropower system will present a number of technical and environmental challenges that needs to be identified and mitigated. A more variable production will lead to fluctuating flow in receiving rivers and reservoirs, and it will also

  8. Responses to Environmental & Societal Challenges for our Unstable Earth (RESCUE) foresight initiative - towards a European response to grand challenges in sustainability research and learning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Avril, B.; et al.

    2012-04-01

    The "Responses to Environmental and Societal Challenges for our Unstable Earth" (RESCUE; www.esf.org/rescue) foresight initiative - a joint COST-ESF "Frontiers of Science" initiative - aimed to help Europe address the societal and scientific challenges related to global environmental change and the related resilience issues. In RESCUE, the focus of attention was on people and the goal was to stimulate an integrated, innovative response from natural, social and human sciences. The RESCUE foresight initiative began in September 2009 and has recently been completed. RESCUE had the following key objectives: 1. To propose a strategic process for natural, social and human sciences to improve their ability and capacity to work together to address global environmental change through interdisciplinary synergy and to respond effectively to societal and policy-relevant needs; 2. To articulate new scientific issues related to global environmental change and the related resilience issues, especially those of transdisciplinary nature and of major relevance to society; 3. To explore new approaches towards truly integrated, interdisciplinary science, and to facilitate the 'revolution' in education and capacity building it requires. The work of RESCUE focused on the following themes: · Contributions from social sciences and humanities in developing responses to challenges of the Anthropocene; · Collaboration between the natural, social and human sciences in global environmental change and resilience studies; · Requirements for research methodologies and data; · Education and capacity building - towards a 'revolution'; · The interface between science and policy, communication and outreach. The RESCUE recommendations include the following issues to be addressed by science-funders, science policy-makers, researchers, practitioners, educators and a range of other societal actors: · develop an institutional framework for an open knowledge society, · re-organise research so

  9. Crew Exploration Vehicle Environmental Control and Life Support Emergency Gas Consumable Sizing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lewis, John F.; Peterso, Laurie

    2007-01-01

    As part of preparing for the Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) worked on developing the requirements that drive the emergency gas consumables. Emergency gas is required to support Extravehicular Activities (EVA), maintain the cabin pressure during a cabin leak for the crew to don their suits, and to recover the cabin following a toxic even or a fire.

  10. Environmental and social influences on emerging infectious diseases: past, present and future.

    PubMed Central

    McMichael, A J

    2004-01-01

    During the processes of human population dispersal around the world over the past 50 000-100 000 years, along with associated cultural evolution and inter-population contact and conflict, there have been several major transitions in the relationships of Homo sapiens with the natural world, animate and inanimate. Each of these transitions has resulted in the emergence of new or unfamiliar infectious diseases.The three great historical transitions since the initial advent of agriculture and livestock herding, from ca. 10 000 years ago, occurred when: (i) early agrarian-based settlements enabled sylvatic enzootic microbes to make contact with Homo sapiens; (ii) early Eurasian civilizations (such as the Greek and Roman empires, China and south Asia) came into military and commercial contact, ca. 3000-2000 years ago, swapping their dominant infections; and (iii) European expansionism, over the past five centuries, caused the transoceanic spread of often lethal infectious diseases. This latter transition is best known in relation to the conquest of the Americas by Spanish conquistadores, when the inadvertent spread of measles, smallpox and influenza devastated the Amerindian populations.Today, we are living through the fourth of these great transitional periods. The contemporary spread and increased lability of various infectious diseases, new and old, reflect the combined and increasingly widespread impacts of demographic, environmental, behavioural, technological and other rapid changes in human ecology. Modern clinical medicine has, via blood transfusion, organ transplantation, and the use of hypodermic syringes, created new opportunities for microbes. These have contributed to the rising iatrogenic problems of hepatitis C, HIV/AIDS and several other viral infections. Meanwhile, the injudicious use of antibiotics has been a rare instance of human action actually increasing 'biodiversity'.Another aspect of this fourth transition is that modern hyper-hygienic living

  11. The Agricultural Policy/Environmental Extender (Apex) Model: An Emerging Tool for Landscape and Watershed Environmental Analyses

    SciTech Connect

    Gassman, Philip W.; Williams, Jimmy R.; Wang, Xiuying; Saleh, Ali; Osei, Edward; Hauck, Larry; Izaurralde, Roberto C.; Flowers, Joan

    2010-06-01

    The Agricultural Policy Environmental eXtender (APEX) model was developed by the Blacklands Research and Extension Center in Temple, Texas. APEX is a flexible and dynamic tool that is capable of simulating a wide array of management practices, cropping systems, and other land uses across a broad range of agricultural landscapes, including whole farms and small watersheds.

  12. Selection of pigs for improved coping with health and environmental challenges: breeding for resistance or tolerance?

    PubMed

    Guy, Sarita Z Y; Thomson, Peter C; Hermesch, Susanne

    2012-01-01

    The benefits of improved health and welfare in pigs have driven refinements in management and selection practices, one of which is the production of pig phenotypes that can maintain health and productivity by improving response against pathogens. Selection has traditionally been made for host resistance; but the alternative host defence mechanism-host tolerance-is now being considered, as breeding for disease tolerance allows maintenance of high performance across environments of increasing pathogenic load. A distinction must be made between these two mechanisms as they vary in their influence on host-pathogen interactions and pathogen evolution, and consequently on the results of breeding programs. Many pig production studies have failed to distinguish between resistance and tolerance; although a distinction may not always be possible. This article reviews current perspectives in selective breeding for disease resistance and tolerance in growing pigs, and the attendant industry implications. To assess the viability of breeding for resistance and/or tolerance for improved response to disease and other environmental challenges, we propose the use of routine farm records, instead of data measurements taken from laboratory experiments. Consequently, a number of factors need to be taken into account simultaneously for a multidimensional modeling approach. This includes not only genotype and disease variables, but also descriptors of the environment, as well as any possible interactions. It may not be feasible to record individual pathogen loads, and therefore true tolerance, on farm using routinely collected data. However, it may be estimated with group (farm) means, or other proxy measures. Although this results in a bias, this may still be useful for modeling and quantifying resistance and tolerance. We can then quantify success of selection, and this may enable us to decide whether to select for disease resistance versus disease tolerance. PMID:23248641

  13. Energetic optimisation of foraging honeybees: flexible change of strategies in response to environmental challenges.

    PubMed

    Stabentheiner, Anton; Kovac, Helmut

    2014-01-01

    Heterothermic insects like honeybees, foraging in a variable environment, face the challenge of keeping their body temperature high to enable immediate flight and to promote fast exploitation of resources. Because of their small size they have to cope with an enormous heat loss and, therefore, high costs of thermoregulation. This calls for energetic optimisation which may be achieved by different strategies. An 'economizing' strategy would be to reduce energetic investment whenever possible, for example by using external heat from the sun for thermoregulation. An 'investment-guided' strategy, by contrast, would be to invest additional heat production or external heat gain to optimize physiological parameters like body temperature which promise increased energetic returns. Here we show how honeybees balance these strategies in response to changes of their local microclimate. In a novel approach of simultaneous measurement of respiration and body temperature foragers displayed a flexible strategy of thermoregulatory and energetic management. While foraging in shade on an artificial flower they did not save energy with increasing ambient temperature as expected but acted according to an 'investment-guided' strategy, keeping the energy turnover at a high level (∼56-69 mW). This increased thorax temperature and speeded up foraging as ambient temperature increased. Solar heat was invested to increase thorax temperature at low ambient temperature ('investment-guided' strategy) but to save energy at high temperature ('economizing' strategy), leading to energy savings per stay of ∼18-76% in sunshine. This flexible economic strategy minimized costs of foraging, and optimized energetic efficiency in response to broad variation of environmental conditions. PMID:25162211

  14. On the challenges of high resolution forecasting with the Global Environmental Multiscale (GEM) atmospheric model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zahid Husain, Syed; Girard, Claude

    2016-04-01

    High resolution forecasting at the sub-kilometer scale with the Global Environmental Multiscale (GEM) atmospheric model leads to a number of challenges. The three-dimensional elliptic problem resulting from vertical discretization imposes severe restrictions on the vertical resolution and the time-step size in order to maintain vertical separability that permits the use of a direct solver. Although iterative solvers do not depend on vertical separability, readjusting the contributions of the nonhydrostatic pressure perturbation is found to circumvent the separability issue for the direct solver. In addition to the vertical-separability problem, at sub-kilometer resolutions the model currently exhibits strong instability particularly over complex orography where the model may encounter mountains with steep slopes. Off-centered averaging in the semi-Lagrangian scheme as well as the explicit high order numerical diffusion scheme - available within the GEM model to control high wave number noise - are found to be inadequate in addressing this strong orography-induced instability. Increasing the level of off-centering for the equations attributable to the non-hydrostatic aspects of the atmospheric flow is found to improve model stability during preliminary tests. Furthermore, as the existing hyperdiffusion schemes in GEM does not conserve angular momentum a new Smagorinsky-type diffusion scheme is currently being developed that will be compatible with the conservation laws. The improved diffusion scheme coupled with the modified off-centering of the non-hydrostatic equations is expected to have a more meaningful impact on the orgography-induced instability. Pertinent results will be presented at the conference.

  15. Energetic Optimisation of Foraging Honeybees: Flexible Change of Strategies in Response to Environmental Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Stabentheiner, Anton; Kovac, Helmut

    2014-01-01

    Heterothermic insects like honeybees, foraging in a variable environment, face the challenge of keeping their body temperature high to enable immediate flight and to promote fast exploitation of resources. Because of their small size they have to cope with an enormous heat loss and, therefore, high costs of thermoregulation. This calls for energetic optimisation which may be achieved by different strategies. An ‘economizing’ strategy would be to reduce energetic investment whenever possible, for example by using external heat from the sun for thermoregulation. An ‘investment-guided’ strategy, by contrast, would be to invest additional heat production or external heat gain to optimize physiological parameters like body temperature which promise increased energetic returns. Here we show how honeybees balance these strategies in response to changes of their local microclimate. In a novel approach of simultaneous measurement of respiration and body temperature foragers displayed a flexible strategy of thermoregulatory and energetic management. While foraging in shade on an artificial flower they did not save energy with increasing ambient temperature as expected but acted according to an ‘investment-guided’ strategy, keeping the energy turnover at a high level (∼56–69 mW). This increased thorax temperature and speeded up foraging as ambient temperature increased. Solar heat was invested to increase thorax temperature at low ambient temperature (‘investment-guided’ strategy) but to save energy at high temperature (‘economizing’ strategy), leading to energy savings per stay of ∼18–76% in sunshine. This flexible economic strategy minimized costs of foraging, and optimized energetic efficiency in response to broad variation of environmental conditions. PMID:25162211

  16. Modeling and managing urban water demand through smart meters: Benefits and challenges from current research and emerging trends

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cominola, A.; Giuliani, M.; Castelletti, A.; Piga, D.; Rizzoli, A. E.

    2015-12-01

    Urban population growth, climate and land use change are expected to boost residential water demand in urban contexts in the next decades. In such a context, developing suitable demand-side management strategies is essential to meet future water demands, pursue water savings, and reduce the costs for water utilities. Yet, the effectiveness of water demand management strategies (WDMS) relies on our understanding of water consumers' behavior, their consumption habits, and the water use drivers. While low spatial and temporal resolution water consumption data, as traditionally gathered for billing purposes, hardly support this understanding, the advent of high-resolution, smart metering technologies allowed for quasi real-time monitoring water consumption at the single household level. This, in turn, is advancing our ability in characterizing consumers' behavior, modeling, and designing user-oriented residential water demand management strategies. Several water smart metering programs have been rolled-out in the last two decades worldwide, addressing one or more of the following water demand management phases: (i) data gathering, (ii) water end-uses characterization, (iii) user modeling, (iv) design and implementation of personalized WDMS. Moreover, the number of research studies in this domain is quickly increasing and big economic investments are currently being devoted worldwide to smart metering programs. With this work, we contribute the first comprehensive review of more than 100 experiences in the field of residential water demand modeling and management, and we propose a general framework for their classification. We revise consolidated practices, identify emerging trends and highlight the challenges and opportunities for future developments given by the use of smart meters advancing residential water demand management. Our analysis of the status quo of smart urban water demand management research and market constitutes a structured collection of information

  17. The promises and challenges of pre-exposure prophylaxis as part of the emerging paradigm of combination HIV prevention

    PubMed Central

    Cáceres, Carlos F; Koechlin, Florence; Goicochea, Pedro; Sow, Papa-Salif; O'Reilly, Kevin R; Mayer, Kenneth H; Godfrey-Faussett, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Towards the end of the twentieth century, significant success was achieved in reducing incidence in several global HIV epidemics through ongoing prevention strategies. However, further progress in risk reduction was uncertain. For one thing, it was clear that social vulnerability had to be addressed, through research on interventions addressing health systems and other structural barriers. As soon as antiretroviral treatment became available, researchers started to conceive that antiretrovirals might play a role in decreasing either susceptibility in uninfected people or infectiousness among people living with HIV. In this paper we focus on the origin, present status, and potential contribution of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) within the combination HIV prevention framework. Discussion After a phase of controversy, PrEP efficacy trials took off. By 2015, daily oral PrEP, using tenofovir alone or in combination with emtricitabine, has been proven efficacious, though efficacy seems heavily contingent upon adherence to pill uptake. Initial demonstration projects after release of efficacy results have shown that PrEP can be implemented in real settings and adherence can be high, leading to high effectiveness. Despite its substantial potential, beliefs persist about unfeasibility in real-life settings due to stigma, cost, adherence, and potential risk compensation barriers. Conclusions The strategic synergy of behavioural change communication, biomedical strategies (including PrEP), and structural programmes is providing the basis for the combination HIV prevention framework. If PrEP is to ever become a key component of that framework, several negative beliefs must be confronted based on emerging evidence; moreover, research gaps regarding PrEP implementation must be filled, and appropriate prioritization strategies must be set up. Those challenges are significant, proportional to the impact that PrEP implementation may have in the global response to HIV

  18. 1993 UPDATE OF THE U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY'S SITE EMERGING TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Emerging Technology Program (ETP), part of the U.S. EPA's Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation (SITE) Program, is continuing to create an environment where technical innovation can accelerate into field and commercial applications for treatment of hazardous waste sites....

  19. Emerging foundations: nano-engineering and bio-microelectronics for environmental biotechnology.

    PubMed

    Sayler, Gary S; Simpson, Michael L; Cox, Chris D

    2004-06-01

    The growth of nanotechnology, the emergence of 'nanobiotechnology', and the incorporation of living organisms in biomicroelectronic devices are revolutionizing the interdisciplinary opportunities for microbiologists to participate in understanding, developing and exploiting microbial processes in and from the environment. PMID:15196494

  20. Challenges and Opportunities in Mainstreaming Environmental Education into the Curricula of Teachers' Colleges in Ethiopia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Waktola, Daniel Kassahun

    2009-01-01

    Lack of environmental awareness is one of the underlying causes of severe environmental degradation in Ethiopia. As teachers' colleges are a seedbed of such awareness, assessment of college curricula should shed light on the possibilities they offer to develop capacities to address environmental degradation. This small-scale study is based on the…

  1. Emergency Victim Care. A Training Manual for Emergency Medical Technicians. Module 10. Injuries of the Eye, Ear, Nose, Abdomen, Central Nervous System and Genitalia. Burns and Environmental Injuries. Revised.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ohio State Dept. of Education, Columbus. Div. of Vocational Education.

    This training manual for emergency medical technicians, one of 14 modules that comprise the Emergency Victim Care textbook, covers injuries of the eyes, ears, nose, abdomen, central nervous system (CNS), and genitalia; burns; and environmental injuries. Objectives stated for the two chapters are for the student to be able to describe procedures…

  2. The SOLUTIONS project: challenges and responses for present and future emerging pollutants in land and water resources management.

    PubMed

    Brack, Werner; Altenburger, Rolf; Schüürmann, Gerrit; Krauss, Martin; López Herráez, David; van Gils, Jos; Slobodnik, Jaroslav; Munthe, John; Gawlik, Bernd Manfred; van Wezel, Annemarie; Schriks, Merijn; Hollender, Juliane; Tollefsen, Knut Erik; Mekenyan, Ovanes; Dimitrov, Saby; Bunke, Dirk; Cousins, Ian; Posthuma, Leo; van den Brink, Paul J; López de Alda, Miren; Barceló, Damià; Faust, Michael; Kortenkamp, Andreas; Scrimshaw, Mark; Ignatova, Svetlana; Engelen, Guy; Massmann, Gudrun; Lemkine, Gregory; Teodorovic, Ivana; Walz, Karl-Heinz; Dulio, Valeria; Jonker, Michiel T O; Jäger, Felix; Chipman, Kevin; Falciani, Francesco; Liska, Igor; Rooke, David; Zhang, Xiaowei; Hollert, Henner; Vrana, Branislav; Hilscherova, Klara; Kramer, Kees; Neumann, Steffen; Hammerbacher, Ruth; Backhaus, Thomas; Mack, Juliane; Segner, Helmut; Escher, Beate; de Aragão Umbuzeiro, Gisela

    2015-01-15

    SOLUTIONS (2013 to 2018) is a European Union Seventh Framework Programme Project (EU-FP7). The project aims to deliver a conceptual framework to support the evidence-based development of environmental policies with regard to water quality. SOLUTIONS will develop the tools for the identification, prioritisation and assessment of those water contaminants that may pose a risk to ecosystems and human health. To this end, a new generation of chemical and effect-based monitoring tools is developed and integrated with a full set of exposure, effect and risk assessment models. SOLUTIONS attempts to address legacy, present and future contamination by integrating monitoring and modelling based approaches with scenarios on future developments in society, economy and technology and thus in contamination. The project follows a solutions-oriented approach by addressing major problems of water and chemicals management and by assessing abatement options. SOLUTIONS takes advantage of the access to the infrastructure necessary to investigate the large basins of the Danube and Rhine as well as relevant Mediterranean basins as case studies, and puts major efforts on stakeholder dialogue and support. Particularly, the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) Common Implementation Strategy (CIS) working groups, International River Commissions, and water works associations are directly supported with consistent guidance for the early detection, identification, prioritisation, and abatement of chemicals in the water cycle. SOLUTIONS will give a specific emphasis on concepts and tools for the impact and risk assessment of complex mixtures of emerging pollutants, their metabolites and transformation products. Analytical and effect-based screening tools will be applied together with ecological assessment tools for the identification of toxicants and their impacts. The SOLUTIONS approach is expected to provide transparent and evidence-based candidates or River Basin Specific Pollutants in the case

  3. Challenges with Deploying and Integrating Environmental Control and Life Support Functions in a Lunar Architecture with High Degrees of Mobility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bagdigian, Robert M.

    2009-01-01

    Visions of lunar outposts often depict a collection of fixed elements such as pressurized habitats, in and around which human inhabitants spend the large majority of their surface stay time. In such an outpost, an efficient deployment of environmental control and life support equipment can be achieved by centralizing certain functions within one or a minimum number of habitable elements and relying on the exchange of gases and liquids between elements via atmosphere ventilation and plumbed interfaces. However, a rigidly fixed outpost can constrain the degree to which the total lunar landscape can be explored. The capability to enable widespread access across the landscape makes a lunar architecture with a high degree of surface mobility attractive. Such mobility presents unique challenges to the efficient deployment of environmental control and life support functions in multiple elements that may for long periods of time be operated independently. This paper describes some of those anticipated challenges.

  4. Making Pedagogical Decisions to Address Challenges of Joint Jewish-Bedouin Environmental Projects in Israel

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alkaher, Iris; Tal, Tali

    2016-01-01

    This interpretive study identifies challenges of working with Bedouin and Jewish Israeli youth in two multicultural projects: education for sustainability and place-conscious education. It also describes the ways the adult project leaders addressed these challenges and their views on the effectiveness of their decisions. Participants comprised 16…

  5. Development of asthmatic inflammation in mice following early-life exposure to ambient environmental particulates and chronic allergen challenge

    PubMed Central

    Herbert, Cristan; Siegle, Jessica S.; Shadie, Alexander M.; Nikolaysen, Stina; Garthwaite, Linda; Hansbro, Nicole G.; Foster, Paul S.; Kumar, Rakesh K.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Childhood exposure to environmental particulates increases the risk of development of asthma. The underlying mechanisms might include oxidant injury to airway epithelial cells (AEC). We investigated the ability of ambient environmental particulates to contribute to sensitization via the airways, and thus to the pathogenesis of childhood asthma. To do so, we devised a novel model in which weanling BALB/c mice were exposed to both ambient particulate pollutants and ovalbumin for sensitization via the respiratory tract, followed by chronic inhalational challenge with a low mass concentration of the antigen. We also examined whether these particulates caused oxidant injury and activation of AEC in vitro. Furthermore, we assessed the potential benefit of minimizing oxidative stress to AEC through the period of sensitization and challenge by dietary intervention. We found that characteristic features of asthmatic inflammation developed only in animals that received particulates at the same time as respiratory sensitization, and were then chronically challenged with allergen. However, these animals did not develop airway hyper-responsiveness. Ambient particulates induced epithelial injury in vitro, with evidence of oxidative stress and production of both pro-inflammatory cytokines and Th2-promoting cytokines such as IL-33. Treatment of AEC with an antioxidant in vitro inhibited the pro-inflammatory cytokine response to these particulates. Ambient particulates also induced pro-inflammatory cytokine expression following administration to weanling mice. However, early-life dietary supplementation with antioxidants did not prevent the development of an asthmatic inflammatory response in animals that were exposed to particulates, sensitized and challenged. We conclude that injury to airway epithelium by ambient environmental particulates in early life is capable of promoting the development of an asthmatic inflammatory response in sensitized and antigen-challenged mice

  6. High-speed rail with emerging automobiles and aircraft can reduce environmental impacts in California’s future

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chester, Mikhail; Horvath, Arpad

    2012-09-01

    Sustainable mobility policy for long-distance transportation services should consider emerging automobiles and aircraft as well as infrastructure and supply chain life-cycle effects in the assessment of new high-speed rail systems. Using the California corridor, future automobiles, high-speed rail and aircraft long-distance travel are evaluated, considering emerging fuel-efficient vehicles, new train designs and the possibility that the region will meet renewable electricity goals. An attributional per passenger-kilometer-traveled life-cycle inventory is first developed including vehicle, infrastructure and energy production components. A consequential life-cycle impact assessment is then established to evaluate existing infrastructure expansion against the construction of a new high-speed rail system. The results show that when using the life-cycle assessment framework, greenhouse gas footprints increase significantly and human health and environmental damage potentials may be dominated by indirect and supply chain components. The environmental payback is most sensitive to the number of automobile trips shifted to high-speed rail, and for greenhouse gases is likely to occur in 20-30 years. A high-speed rail system that is deployed with state-of-the-art trains, electricity that has met renewable goals, and in a configuration that endorses high ridership will provide significant environmental benefits over existing modes. Opportunities exist for reducing the long-distance transportation footprint by incentivizing large automobile trip shifts, meeting clean electricity goals and reducing material production effects.

  7. *Environmental mycobacteriosis and drinking water: an emerging problem for developed countries

    EPA Science Inventory

    Background and Objective: Rates ofpulmonary environmental mycobacteriosis (EM) appear to be increasing among developed countries during the past 20 years. EM is caused by multiple species of pathogenic mycobacteria that have been recovered from soil, water, water aerosols, biofil...

  8. EPA (ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGNCY) FIELD GUIDE FOR SCIENTIFIC SUPPORT ACTIVITIES ASSOCIATED WITH SUPERFUND EMERGENCY RESPONSE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA) grants the President the authority to respond to releases of hazardous chemical substances that imminently and substantially threaten public health or welfare, or the environment. The Act, w...

  9. Identification of molecular and physiological responses to chronic environmental challenge in an invasive species: the Pacific oyster, Crassostrea gigas

    PubMed Central

    Clark, Melody S; Thorne, Michael A S; Amaral, Ana; Vieira, Florbela; Batista, Frederico M; Reis, João; Power, Deborah M

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the environmental responses of an invasive species is critical in predicting how ecosystem composition may be transformed in the future, especially under climate change. In this study, Crassostrea gigas, a species well adapted to the highly variable intertidal environment, was exposed to the chronic environmental challenges of temperature (19 and 24°C) and pH (ambient seawater and a reduction of 0.4 pH units) in an extended 3-month laboratory-based study. Physiological parameters were measured (condition index, shell growth, respiration, excretion rates, O:N ratios, and ability to repair shell damage) alongside molecular analyses. Temperature was by far the most important stressor, as demonstrated by reduced condition indexes and shell growth at 24°C, with relatively little effect detected for pH. Transcriptional profiling using candidate genes and SOLiD sequencing of mantle tissue revealed that classical “stress” genes, previously reported to be upregulated under acute temperature challenges, were not significantly expressed in any of the treatments, emphasizing the different response between acute and longer term chronic stress. The transcriptional profiling also elaborated on the cellular responses underpinning the physiological results, including the identification of the PI3K/AKT/mTOR pathway as a potentially novel marker for chronic environmental challenge. This study represents a first attempt to understand the energetic consequences of cumulative thermal stress on the intertidal C. gigas which could significantly impact on coastal ecosystem biodiversity and function in the future. PMID:24223268

  10. Differential responses to environmental challenge by common carp Cyprinus carpio highlight the importance of coping style in integrative physiology.

    PubMed

    Rey, S; Ribas, L; Morera Capdevila, D; Callol, A; Huntingford, F A; Pilarczyk, M; Kadri, S; MacKenzie, S

    2016-03-01

    Common carp Cyprinus carpio displaying proactive or reactive stress coping styles were acclimated to two environmental regimes (low oxygen and low temperature), and selected groups were tested for response to an inflammatory challenge (Escherichia coli lipopolysaccharide, LPS). Plasma glucose and lactate levels were measured, as were selected C. carpio-specific messenger (m)RNA transcript abundance, including cortisol receptor (CR), enolase (ENO), glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH) and interleukin-1-beta (IL1β) was measured in individual whole brain samples. Basal levels (in sham injected fish held in normoxic conditions at 25° C) of plasma lactate and glucose differed between coping styles, being significantly lower in proactive individuals. Both variables increased in response to LPS challenge, with the exception of plasma glucose in reactive fish held in hypoxia. Baseline levels of gene expression under control conditions were significantly different for GAPDH between behavioural phenotypes. The responses to experimental challenge were sometimes diametrically opposed between stress-coping styles in a transcript-specific manner. For CR and GAPDH, for example, the response to LPS injection in hypoxia were opposite between proactive and reactive animals. Proactive fish showed decreased CR and increased GAPDH, whereas reactive showed the opposite response. These results further highlight that screening for stress-coping styles prior to experiments in adaptive physiology can significantly affect the interpretation of data obtained. Further, this leads to a more finely tuned analytical output providing an improved understanding of variation in individual responses to both environmental and inflammatory challenge. PMID:26762295

  11. 1993 UPDATE OF THE U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY'S SITE EMERGING TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Emerging Technology Program (ETP), part of the U.S. EPA`s Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation (SITE) Program, is continuing to create an environment where technical innovation can accelerate into field and commercial applications for treatment of hazardous waste sites....

  12. U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY'S SITE EMERGING TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM: 1991 UPDATE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Emerging Technology Program (ETP) supports the development of technologies successfully tested at the bench- and pilot-scale level. The ETP is part of the Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation (SITE) Program which was established in 1986 under the Superfund Amendments an...

  13. SOME EMERGING ISSUES IN WATERSHED MANAGEMENT LANDSCAPE PATTERNS SUSTAINABILITY WITH CUMULATIVE ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Emerging issues in watershed management include the need to assess the effects of management activities on the time scale of several cutting rotations (>100 yrs) and on spatial sacles that consider factors impinging from beyond watershed boundaries. ong-range analysis reveals str...

  14. ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING AND MODELING ASSOCIATED WITH NATIONAL EMERGENCIES - EXPERIENCES GAINED FROM THE WORLD TRADE CENTER DISASTER

    EPA Science Inventory

    A workshop was held in Research Triangle Park, NC on November 18-19, 2002 to discuss scientific issues associated with measuring, modeling, and assessing exposure and risk to air containing contaminants generated as a result of national emergencies and disasters. Participants wer...

  15. 75 FR 73112 - National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences; Notification of Request for Emergency...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-11-29

    ... consequences of oil spills in general. Close ongoing community engagement will enhance scientific validity of... for Emergency Clearance; GuLF Study: Gulf Long-term Follow- up Study for Oil Spill Clean-Up Workers... information collection related to the GuLF Study: Gulf Long-term Follow-up Study for Oil Spill...

  16. Grand challenge problems in environmental modeling and remediation: Groundwater contaminant transport. Final project report 1998

    SciTech Connect

    1998-04-01

    The over-reaching goal of the Groundwater Grand Challenge component of the Partnership in Computational Science (PICS) was to develop and establish the massively parallel approach for the description of groundwater flow and transport and to address the problem of uncertainties in the data and its interpretation. This necessitated the development of innovative algorithms and the implementation of massively parallel computational tools to provide a suite of simulators for groundwater flow and transport in heterogeneous media. This report summarizes the activities and deliverables of the Groundwater Grand Challenge project funded through the High Performance Computing grand challenge program of the Department of Energy from 1995 through 1997.

  17. Young Voices: The Challenges and Opportunities That Arise in Early Childhood Environmental Education Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boileau, Elizabeth Yvonne Shaw

    2013-01-01

    The number of early childhood environmental education programs are on the rise in Canada and although young children have been quite marginalized from environmental education research, better understanding young children's relationships with the natural world is increasingly seen as important. Including young children themselves in research is…

  18. Environmental Education in Three German-Speaking Countries: Tensions and Challenges for Research and Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nikel, Jutta; Reid, Alan

    2006-01-01

    In this article, we explore a series of issues and tensions raised by the papers in this Special Issue of "Environmental Education Research." This papers focus on developments in environmental education and ESD research in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. In order to provide an alternative framework for contextualising and understanding the…

  19. Bringing the Tools of Big Science to Bear on Local Environmental Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bronson, Scott; Jones, Keith W.; Brown, Maria

    2013-01-01

    We describe an interactive collaborative environmental education project that makes advanced laboratory facilities at Brookhaven National Laboratory accessible for one-year or multi-year science projects for the high school level. Cyber-enabled Environmental Science (CEES) utilizes web conferencing software to bring multi-disciplinary,…

  20. Responding to Environmental Challenges: An Initial Assessment of Higher Education Curricula Needs by Australian Planning Professionals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hurlimann, Anna C.

    2009-01-01

    Environmental planning education has become crucial given the projected implications of climate change for human settlements and nature. However, despite the identified importance of educating planners with regards to sustainability and environmental issues, there has been limited discussion of the topic within literature. In particular, there has…

  1. Uncertainty in Environmental Decision-Making: Issues, Challenges and Future Directions

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Environmental decision-making is complicated by the complexity of natural systems and the often competing needs of multiple stakeholders. Modelling tools are often used to assist at various stages of the environmental decision-making process. If such models are to provide effective decision suppor...

  2. Preventing insulin dependent diabetes mellitus: the environmental challenge. Diabetes Epidemiology Research International.

    PubMed Central

    1987-01-01

    The epidemiology of insulin dependent diabetes mellitus was evaluated to determine the degree to which the disease results from environmental agents and therefore might be prevented. The results of research indicate that insulin dependent diabetes can be produced in animal models by environmental factors, there are major geographical variations in diabetes, certain populations have shown rapid changes in incidence over time, migrants appear to take on the risk of diabetes in their new country, and certain viruses and chemicals cause insulin dependent diabetes in humans. The results of genetic and epidemiological studies also show that at least 60% of insulin dependent diabetes world wide, and perhaps over 95%, is environmentally determined and thus potentially avoidable. It is concluded that the primary worldwide determinants of diabetes are environmental not immunogenetic and that identifying and altering the diabetogenic environmental factor(s) are likely to be more effective and less risky in preventing insulin dependent diabetes than current immunogenetic approaches. PMID:3117180

  3. Environmental Challenges Related to the Acquisition of the Trans Carpathian Wide Angle Reflection and Refraction Line

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dragut, Dorina-Alina; Schultz, Gehrig; Mocanu, Victor; Stephenson, Randell; Janik, Tomasz; Starostenko, Vitaly

    2015-04-01

    Complex structures like the Carpathian Orogen and its neighbouring platforms and related inter-orogenic basin system can be understood only by complex integration of complementary investigative tools. Most of regional geoscientific investigations in Romania have targeted the very intricate, high intermediate-depth seismicity, clustered Carpathian Bend Zone: Vrancea. Despite huge geological and geophysical efforts, the area remains a matter of robust debate, at least from the point of view of geodynamic driving mechanisms. However, other areas outside Vrancea remained somehow "orphaned". However, a large wide angle refraction and reflection (WARR) survey was carried out in the summer of 2014 by a large international partnership in order to study the transition from the East European Platform to the northern part of the Romanian Eastern Carpathians, Transylvanian Basin and the Apuseni Mountains. The main scientific objectives of the WARR project relate to three main investigation domains: crustal architecture; affinity of crystalline basement and sedimentary basins architecture. The profile is about 700 km in total, in Ukraine and Romania. Recorders were placed at 1.75 - 2.0 km intervals along an alignment forming the Romanian segment. Recorders used were stand-alone DSS Cubes from the Helmholz Center of GFZ Potsdam and from the Institute of Geophysics of the Polish Academy of Sciences. The seismic sources were explosives ("Riogel" and "Riodet" by Maxam), with shotpoints spaced at 20 - 65 km with a total of 800 - 1200 kg explosives/site in clusters of drill-holes loaded with 50 kg explosive/hole, average depth of 25 m. Very complicated and legally-challenging environmental permitting requirements represented a real issue for successful implementation of the project. The main concern of local and central authorities related to potential pollution of sensitive components. Here, we present the strategy, actions and results concluded in order to reach the scientific and

  4. Environmental contaminants of emerging concern in seafood--European database on contaminant levels.

    PubMed

    Vandermeersch, Griet; Lourenço, Helena Maria; Alvarez-Muñoz, Diana; Cunha, Sara; Diogène, Jorge; Cano-Sancho, German; Sloth, Jens J; Kwadijk, Christiaan; Barcelo, Damia; Allegaert, Wim; Bekaert, Karen; Fernandes, José Oliveira; Marques, Antonio; Robbens, Johan

    2015-11-01

    Marine pollution gives rise to concern not only about the environment itself but also about the impact on food safety and consequently on public health. European authorities and consumers have therefore become increasingly worried about the transfer of contaminants from the marine environment to seafood. So-called "contaminants of emerging concern" are chemical substances for which no maximum levels have been laid down in EU legislation, or substances for which maximum levels have been provided but which require revision. Adequate information on their presence in seafood is often lacking and thus potential risks cannot be excluded. Assessment of food safety issues related to these contaminants has thus become urgent and imperative. A database (www.ecsafeseafooddbase.eu), containing available information on the levels of contaminants of emerging concern in seafood and providing the most recent data to scientists and regulatory authorities, was developed. The present paper reviews a selection of contaminants of emerging concern in seafood including toxic elements, endocrine disruptors, brominated flame retardants, pharmaceuticals and personal care products, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and derivatives, microplastics and marine toxins. Current status on the knowledge of human exposure, toxicity and legislation are briefly presented and the outcome from scientific publications reporting on the levels of these compounds in seafood is presented and discussed. PMID:26123540

  5. Innovative Applications of EGNOS for prevention and management of environmental emergencies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cefalo, R.; Montefusco, C.; Calderan, M.

    2009-04-01

    EGNOS (European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service)could be used to send alert messages in order to prevent and manage natural and anthropic environmental disasters. The aim is to avoid or to reduce the total human lives loss and to minimize the impact on terrestrial infrastructures cuased by environmental disasters. This could be done by means of a User Platform able to receive real time data generated by a network of in situ geodetic and geofisics sensors, process them and detect diffrent kind of environmental events (like landslides, flooding, earthquakes, fires, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis etc.) The System should be able to receive also satellite remote sensed data in order to characterize the events. The Platform will, in case of event, generate the alert messages and incapsulate them into the EGNOS SIS (Signal In Space)structure. These alert messages will be received by end user terminals with a GPS/EGNOS card and wireless access to internet able to visualize the georeferenced environmental data and decode the messages. The End Users could be civil users, like tourists, travellers and so on or Search and Rescue (i.e. Civil Protection) Teams.

  6. EMERGING TECHNOLOGIES FOR SUSTAINABLE ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY NEW TECHNOLOGIES, NEW SYSTEMS, NEW APPLICATIONS PRESENTATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    This presentation was given at the US Inter-American Association of Sanitary Engineering and Environmental Sciences VII Regional Conference in Chicago, IL. Sally Gutierrez gave a brief message from the US EPA at the opening session on March 29, 2006. This very short talk was a ...

  7. EMERGING POLLUTANTS, AND COMMUNICATING THE SCIENCE OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMISTRY AND MASS SPECTROMETRY: PHARMACEUTICALS IN THE ENVIRONMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    This paper weaves a rnulti-dimensioned perspective of mass spectrometry as a career against the backdrop of mass spectrometry's key role in the past and future of environmental chemistry. Along the way, some insights are offered for better focusing the spotlight on the discipline...

  8. EMERGING CONTAMINANTS: WHAT ARE THE CURRENT HOT ENVIRONMENTAL POLLUTANTS AND WHAT IS NEXT?

    EPA Science Inventory

    Much has been achieved in the way of environmental protection over the last 30 years. Laws have been passed that have improved the quality of our rivers and streams, the quality of the air we breathe, and the quality of the water we drink. However, as we learn more, new concern...

  9. Environmental Education as Teacher Education: Melancholic Reflections from an Emerging Community of Practice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ormond, Carlos; Zandvliet, David; McClaren, Milton; Robertson, Patrick; Leddy, Shannon; Metcalfe, Selina

    2014-01-01

    During 2011 at Simon Fraser University, the Faculty of Education hosted the implementation of a pre-service teacher education program with an emphasis on sustainability and environmental learning. This cohort, termed SEEDs (Sustainability Education in an Environment of Diversity), enrolled 32 teacher education students in an intensive 12-month…

  10. Strategic environmental management: The emergence of a new competitive requirement for American industry

    SciTech Connect

    Liddie, D.A.

    1995-09-01

    The environmental management infrastructure that has evolved in the United States over the last 25 years or so, since {open_quotes}the environment{close_quotes} burst into the national consciousness with events like Love Canal and Earth Day in the early 1970s. Increasingly, U.S. businesses must successfully compete with those of other nations to survive. Organizational re-engineering, cycle-time management, concurrent engineering, and lean manufacturing are just a few examples of corporate efforts to become better global competitors. U.S. environmental management systems, with their various inefficiencies, can hardly be excluded from these improvement initiatives. Businesses must find ways to reduce or control their environmental costs and, where possible, find ways that {open_quotes}environment{close_quotes} can add positive value to their goods and services. Secondly, although considerable progress has been made in some areas, such as the development of cleaner combustion technology, the net total impact on our global ecosystem continues to rise. Ozone depletion, global warming, reduction in biodiversity, and depletion of non-renewable natural resources are a few of the more frequently cited examples. With the Earth`s population growing at a rate of approximately 100 million people per year, these global impacts can be expected to intensify. Social, regulatory, and economic forces will increasingly be brought to bear in addressing these growing impacts on our environment. As such, the environmental protection mandates placed on corporations can also be expected to increase over time.

  11. "EMERGING" POLLUTANTS, AND COMMUNICATING THE SCIENCE OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMISTRY AND MASS SPECTROMETRY: PHARMACEUTICALS IN THE ENVIRONMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    This paper weaves a rnulti-dimensioned perspective of mass spectrometry as a career against the backdrop of mass spectrometry's key role in the past and future of environmental chemistry. Along the way, some insights are offered for better focusing the spotlight on the discipline...

  12. Challenges for environmental epidemiology research: are biomarker concentrations altered by kidney function or urine concentration adjustment?

    EPA Science Inventory

    Biological monitoring has become a standard approach to exposure assessment in occupational and environmental epidemiology. The use of biological effect markers to identify early adverse changes in target organs has also become widely adopted. Recently, nephrotoxicant research us...

  13. PREDICTIVE UNCERTAINTY IN HYDROLOGIC AND WATER QUALITY MODELING: APPROACHES, APPLICATION TO ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT, AND FUTURE CHALLENGES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Extant process-based hydrologic and water quality models are indispensable to water resources planning and environmental management. However, models are only approximations of real systems and often calibrated with incomplete and uncertain data. Reliable estimates, or perhaps f...

  14. THYROID DISRUPTING CHEMICALS: CHALLENGES IN ASSESSING NEUROTOXIC RISK FROM ENVIRONMENTAL MIXTURES.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Environmental contaminants are known to act as thyroid disrupting chemicals (TDCs). Broadly defined, TDCs are xenobiotics that alter the structure or function of the thyroid gland, alter regulatory enzymes associated with thyroid hormone (TH) homeostasis, or change circulating o...

  15. Evolutionary Influences of Plastic Behavioral Responses Upon Environmental Challenges in an Adaptive Radiation.

    PubMed

    Foster, Susan A; Wund, Matthew A; Baker, John A

    2015-09-01

    At the end of the 19th century, the suggestion was made by several scientists, including J. M. Baldwin, that behavioral responses to environmental change could both rescue populations from extinction (Baldwin Effect) and influence the course of subsequent evolution. Here we provide the historical and theoretical background for this argument and offer evidence of the importance of these ideas for understanding how animals (and other organisms that exhibit behavior) will respond to the rapid environmental changes caused by human activity. We offer examples from long-term research on the evolution of behavioral and other phenotypes in the adaptive radiation of the threespine stickleback fish (Gasterosteus aculeatus), a radiation in which it is possible to infer ancestral patterns of behavioral plasticity relative to the post-glacial freshwater radiation in northwestern North America, and to use patterns of parallelism and contemporary evolution to understand adaptive causes of responses to environmental modification. Our work offers insights into the complexity of cognitive responses to environmental change, and into the importance of examining multiple aspects of the phenotype simultaneously, if we are to understand how behavioral shifts contribute to the persistence of populations and to subsequent evolution. We conclude by discussing the origins of apparent novelties induced by environmental shifts, and the importance of accounting for geographic variation within species if we are to accurately anticipate the effects of anthropogenic environmental modification on the persistence and evolution of animals. PMID:26163679

  16. Use of comparative genomics approaches to characterize interspecies differences in response to environmental chemicals: Challenges, opportunities, and research needs

    SciTech Connect

    Burgess-Herbert, Sarah L.; Euling, Susan Y.

    2013-09-15

    A critical challenge for environmental chemical risk assessment is the characterization and reduction of uncertainties introduced when extrapolating inferences from one species to another. The purpose of this article is to explore the challenges, opportunities, and research needs surrounding the issue of how genomics data and computational and systems level approaches can be applied to inform differences in response to environmental chemical exposure across species. We propose that the data, tools, and evolutionary framework of comparative genomics be adapted to inform interspecies differences in chemical mechanisms of action. We compare and contrast existing approaches, from disciplines as varied as evolutionary biology, systems biology, mathematics, and computer science, that can be used, modified, and combined in new ways to discover and characterize interspecies differences in chemical mechanism of action which, in turn, can be explored for application to risk assessment. We consider how genetic, protein, pathway, and network information can be interrogated from an evolutionary biology perspective to effectively characterize variations in biological processes of toxicological relevance among organisms. We conclude that comparative genomics approaches show promise for characterizing interspecies differences in mechanisms of action, and further, for improving our understanding of the uncertainties inherent in extrapolating inferences across species in both ecological and human health risk assessment. To achieve long-term relevance and consistent use in environmental chemical risk assessment, improved bioinformatics tools, computational methods robust to data gaps, and quantitative approaches for conducting extrapolations across species are critically needed. Specific areas ripe for research to address these needs are recommended.

  17. Environmental engineering of navigation infrastructure: a survey of existing practices, challenges, and potential opportunities.

    PubMed

    Fredette, Thomas J; Foran, Christy M; Brasfield, Sandra M; Suedel, Burton C

    2012-01-01

    Navigation infrastructure such as channels, jetties, river training structures, and lock-and-dam facilities are primary components of a safe and efficient water transportation system. Planning for such infrastructure has until recently involved efforts to minimize impacts on the environment through a standardized environmental assessment process. More recently, consistent with environmental sustainability concepts, planners have begun to consider how such projects can also be constructed with environmental enhancements. This study examined the existing institutional conditions within the US Army Corps of Engineers and cooperating federal agencies relative to incorporating environmental enhancements into navigation infrastructure projects. The study sought to (1) investigate institutional attitudes towards the environmental enhancement of navigation infrastructure (EENI) concept, (2) identify potential impediments to implementation and solutions to such impediments, (3) identify existing navigation projects designed with the express intent of enhancing environmental benefit in addition to the primary project purpose, (4) identify innovative ideas for increasing environmental benefits for navigation projects, (5) identify needs for additional technical information or research, and (6) identify laws, regulations, and policies that both support and hinder such design features. The principal investigation tool was an Internet-based survey with 53 questions. The survey captured a wide range of perspectives on the EENI concept including ideas, concerns, research needs, and relevant laws and policies. Study recommendations included further promotion of the concept of EENI to planners and designers, documentation of existing projects, initiation of pilot studies on some of the innovative ideas provided through the survey, and development of national goals and interagency agreements to facilitate implementation. PMID:21796771

  18. Environmental impacts of the emerging digital economy: the e-for-environment e-commerce?

    PubMed

    Sui, Daniel Z; Rejeski, David W

    2002-02-01

    The Internet-led digital economy is changing both the production and consumption patterns at the global scale. Although great potential exists to harness information technology in general and the Internet in particular and improve the environment, possible negative impacts of e-commerce on the environment should also be considered and dealt with. In this forum, we discuss both the potential positive and negative impacts of e-commerce. Drawing from insights gained from the complexity theory, we also delineate some broad contours for environmental policies in the information age. Given the paradoxical nature of technological innovations, we want to caution the scientific community and policymakers not to treat the Internet as the Holy Grail for environmental salvation. PMID:11815820

  19. Effect of Environmental Factors on Germination and Emergence of Invasive Rumex confertus in Central Europe

    PubMed Central

    Kołodziejek, Jeremi; Patykowski, Jacek

    2015-01-01

    Rumex confertus is a biennial species native to Eastern Europe and Asia, where it thrives on meadow-steppes and glades in forest-steppe. This species has increased its range rapidly within central Europe, yet its biology is not well understood, which has led to poorly timed management. Effects of temperature, light, sodium chloride (NaCl), hydrogen ion concentration (pH), potassium nitrate (KNO3), and polyethylene glycol 6000 on seed germination were examined. Seedling emergence was examined for seeds sown at different depths in sand-filled pots. Seeds of R. confertus were nondormant at maturity. The germination percentage and rate of germination were significantly higher in light than in darkness. Secondary dormancy was induced in these seeds by 12 weeks of dark incubation at 4°C. The seeds of R. confertus undergo a seasonal dormancy cycle with deep dormancy in winter and early spring and a low level of dormancy in early autumn. Germination decreased as soil salinity increased. NO3− increased the percentage and rate of germination in the studied species. Decrease in seedling emergence from the seeds buried at >0.5 cm may be due to deficiency of light. From our experiments, we conclude that the weed R. confertus normally becomes established in vegetation gaps or due to disturbance of the uppermost soil layer during the growing season through the germination of seeds originating from a long-lived seed bank. PMID:26229977

  20. Effect of Environmental Factors on Germination and Emergence of Invasive Rumex confertus in Central Europe.

    PubMed

    Kołodziejek, Jeremi; Patykowski, Jacek

    2015-01-01

    Rumex confertus is a biennial species native to Eastern Europe and Asia, where it thrives on meadow-steppes and glades in forest-steppe. This species has increased its range rapidly within central Europe, yet its biology is not well understood, which has led to poorly timed management. Effects of temperature, light, sodium chloride (NaCl), hydrogen ion concentration (pH), potassium nitrate (KNO3), and polyethylene glycol 6000 on seed germination were examined. Seedling emergence was examined for seeds sown at different depths in sand-filled pots. Seeds of R. confertus were nondormant at maturity. The germination percentage and rate of germination were significantly higher in light than in darkness. Secondary dormancy was induced in these seeds by 12 weeks of dark incubation at 4°C. The seeds of R. confertus undergo a seasonal dormancy cycle with deep dormancy in winter and early spring and a low level of dormancy in early autumn. Germination decreased as soil salinity increased. NO3(-) increased the percentage and rate of germination in the studied species. Decrease in seedling emergence from the seeds buried at >0.5 cm may be due to deficiency of light. From our experiments, we conclude that the weed R. confertus normally becomes established in vegetation gaps or due to disturbance of the uppermost soil layer during the growing season through the germination of seeds originating from a long-lived seed bank. PMID:26229977

  1. School Environmental Health Programs and the Challenges of Achieving the Millennium Development Goals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ana, Godson R. E. E.; Shendell, Derek G.

    2011-01-01

    The United Nations (UN) mandate of achieving healthful living for all by the year 2015 through the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) is facing several challenges. In the school environment, and particularly in less developed countries (LDCs), the situation is further strained by both relatively weak infrastructure and competing governmental…

  2. Expansion of sugarcane ethanol production in Brazil: environmental and social challenges.

    PubMed

    Martinelli, Luiz A; Filoso, Solange

    2008-06-01

    Several geopolitical factors, aggravated by worries of global warming, have been fueling the search for and production of renewable energy worldwide for the past few years. Such demand for renewable energy is likely to benefit the sugarcane ethanol industry in Brazil, not only because sugarcane ethanol has a positive energetic balance and relatively low production costs, but also because Brazilian ethanol has been successfully produced and used as biofuel in the country since the 1970s. However, environmental and social impacts associated with ethanol production in Brazil can become important obstacles to sustainable biofuel production worldwide. Atmospheric pollution from burning of sugarcane for harvesting, degradation of soils and aquatic systems, and the exploitation of cane cutters are among the issues that deserve immediate attention from the Brazilian government and international societies. The expansion of sugarcane crops to the areas presently cultivated for soybeans also represent an environmental threat, because it may increase deforestation pressure from soybean crops in the Amazon region. In this paper, we discuss environmental and social issues linked to the expansion of sugarcane in Brazil for ethanol production, and we provide recommendations to help policy makers and the Brazilian government establish new initiatives to produce a code for ethanol production that is environmentally sustainable and economically fair. Recommendations include proper planning and environmental risk assessments for the expansion of sugarcane to new regions such as Central Brazil, improvement of land use practices to reduce soil erosion and nitrogen pollution, proper protection of streams and riparian ecosystems, banning of sugarcane burning practices, and fair working conditions for sugarcane cutters. We also support the creation of a more constructive approach for international stakeholders and trade organizations to promote sustainable development for biofuel

  3. Should mortality data for the elderly be collected routinely in emergencies? The practical challenges of age-disaggregated surveillance systems.

    PubMed

    du Cros, Philipp; Venis, Sarah; Karunakara, Unni

    2013-11-01

    Data on the elderly are rarely collected in humanitarian emergencies. During a refugee crisis in South Sudan, Médecins Sans Frontières developed a prospective mortality surveillance system collecting data for those aged ≥50 years and found that the elderly were dying at five times the rate of those aged 5-49 years. Practical and ethical issues arose. Were reported ages accurate? Since no baseline exists, what does the mortality rate mean? Should programmatic changes be made without evidence that these would reduce the elderly mortality rate? We outline issues to be addressed to enable informed decisions on response to elderly populations in emergency settings. PMID:24114674

  4. Should mortality data for the elderly be collected routinely in emergencies? The practical challenges of age-disaggregated surveillance systems

    PubMed Central

    du Cros, Philipp; Venis, Sarah; Karunakara, Unni

    2013-01-01

    Data on the elderly are rarely collected in humanitarian emergencies. During a refugee crisis in South Sudan, Médecins Sans Frontières developed a prospective mortality surveillance system collecting data for those aged ≥50 years and found that the elderly were dying at five times the rate of those aged 5–49 years. Practical and ethical issues arose. Were reported ages accurate? Since no baseline exists, what does the mortality rate mean? Should programmatic changes be made without evidence that these would reduce the elderly mortality rate? We outline issues to be addressed to enable informed decisions on response to elderly populations in emergency settings. PMID:24114674

  5. Social, Cultural, and Environmental Challenges Faced by Children on Antiretroviral Therapy in Zimbabwe: a Mixed-Method Study

    PubMed Central

    Macherera, Margaret; Moyo, Lindani; Ncube, Mkhanyiseli; Gumbi, Angella

    2012-01-01

    Objectives Despite the advent of antiretroviral therapy (ART), many children, particularly in the rural communities of Zimbabwe, remain vulnerable. The purpose of this study was to determine the factors and challenges facing children on antiretroviral therapy (ART) in Brunapeg area of Mangwe District, Zimbabwe. Methods A mixed-method approach involving interviewer-guided focus group discussions and piloted semi-structured questionnaires was utilized to collect data from different key population groups. The data obtained were analyzed through content coding procedures based on a set of predetermined themes of interest. Results A number of challenges emerged as barriers to the success of antiretroviral therapy for children. Primary care givers were less informed about HIV and AIDS issues for people having direct impact on the success of antiretroviral therapy in children whilst some were found to be taking the antiretroviral drugs meant for the children. It also emerged that some primary care givers were either too young or too old to care for the children while others had failed to disclose to the children why they frequently visited the Opportunistic Infections (OI) clinic. Most primary care givers were not the biological parents of the affected children. Other challenges included inadequate access to health services, inadequate food and nutrition and lack of access to clean water, good hygiene and sanitation. The lack of community support and stigma and discrimination affected their school attendance and hospital visits. All these factors contributed to non-adherence to antiretroviral drugs. Conclusions and Public Health Implications Children on ART in rural communities in Zimbabwe remain severely compromised and have unique problems that need multi-intervention strategies both at policy and programmatic levels. Effective mitigating measures must be fully established and implemented in rural communities of developing countries in the fight for universal

  6. Emerging organic contaminants in coastal waters: anthropogenic impact, environmental release and ecological risk.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Jheng-Jie; Lee, Chon-Lin; Fang, Meng-Der

    2014-08-30

    This study provides a first estimate of the sources, distribution, and risk presented by emerging organic contaminants (EOCs) in coastal waters off southwestern Taiwan. Ten illicit drugs, seven nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), five antibiotics, two blood lipid regulators, two antiepileptic drugs, two UV filters, caffeine, atenolol, and omeprazole were analyzed by solid-phase extraction and liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry (SPE-LC-MS/MS). Thirteen EOCs were detected in coastal waters, including four NSAIDs (acetaminophen, ibuprofen, ketoprofen, and codeine), three antibiotics (ampicillin, erythromycin, and cefalexin), three illicit drugs (ketamine, pseudoephedrine, and MDMA), caffeine, carbamazepine, and gemfibrozil. The median concentrations for the 13 EOCs ranged from 1.47 ng/L to 156 ng/L. Spatial variation in concentration of the 13 EOCs suggests discharge into coastal waters via ocean outfall pipes and rivers. Codeine and ampicillin have significant pollution risk quotients (RQ>1), indicating potentially high risk to aquatic organisms in coastal waters. PMID:24439316

  7. Emergency Doses (ED) - Revision 3: A calculator code for environmental dose computations

    SciTech Connect

    Rittmann, P.D.

    1990-12-01

    The calculator program ED (Emergency Doses) was developed from several HP-41CV calculator programs documented in the report Seven Health Physics Calculator Programs for the HP-41CV, RHO-HS-ST-5P (Rittman 1984). The program was developed to enable estimates of offsite impacts more rapidly and reliably than was possible with the software available for emergency response at that time. The ED - Revision 3, documented in this report, revises the inhalation dose model to match that of ICRP 30, and adds the simple estimates for air concentration downwind from a chemical release. In addition, the method for calculating the Pasquill dispersion parameters was revised to match the GENII code within the limitations of a hand-held calculator (e.g., plume rise and building wake effects are not included). The summary report generator for printed output, which had been present in the code from the original version, was eliminated in Revision 3 to make room for the dispersion model, the chemical release portion, and the methods of looping back to an input menu until there is no further no change. This program runs on the Hewlett-Packard programmable calculators known as the HP-41CV and the HP-41CX. The documentation for ED - Revision 3 includes a guide for users, sample problems, detailed verification tests and results, model descriptions, code description (with program listing), and independent peer review. This software is intended to be used by individuals with some training in the use of air transport models. There are some user inputs that require intelligent application of the model to the actual conditions of the accident. The results calculated using ED - Revision 3 are only correct to the extent allowed by the mathematical models. 9 refs., 36 tabs.

  8. Environmental and economic challenges to coal`s future in China

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, C.J.; Li, B.

    1994-11-01

    Coal accounts for approximately 75% of China`s total primary energy consumption, and is by far the largest contributor to air pollution. The highest growth sector for coal consumption is the power sector, accounting for about 36 percent of total coal consumption in 1993. Over the 1994--2010 period most new, large power plants are expected to be coal-fired. Therefore, the availability and price of coal, as well as environmental constraints will be critical to foreign investors evaluating coal and power projects in China. The purpose of this paper is to provide useful technical, economic and environmental information and analysis on coal and the power sectors of China. The target audiences are potential investors and government energy and environmental policy people. This paper suggests a number of important energy and environmental policy issues that need to be addressed in a timely fashion in order to promote adequate levels of investment in coal and power developments in China. Although this paper highlights problems faced by foreign investors in coal and power, it is important to balance these problems against the large investment opportunities developing in these sectors.

  9. FORMULATING PROTEIN IN DAIRY DIETS TO MEET ECONOMIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL CHALLENGES

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Dairy cows utilize feed CP with greater efficiency than other ruminants, but still excrete about 2 to 3 times more N in manure than they secrete in milk. This increases milk production costs plus environmental N pollution. Optimizing microbial protein formation in the rumen is the most effective way...

  10. Environmental Education Policy Research--Challenges and Ways Research Might Cope with Them

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Laessoe, Jeppe; Feinstein, Noah Weeth; Blum, Nicole

    2013-01-01

    This essay examines the relationship between research and policy and, more specifically, how researchers might relate to policy work. Given the current international policy focus on climate change, green growth and sustainability in general, it argues for strengthening and widening policy research in the areas of Environmental Education (EE),…

  11. Turkish Students' Views on Environmental Challenges with respect to Gender: An Analysis of ROSE Data

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cavas, Bulent; Cavas, Pinar; Tekkaya, Ceren; Cakiroglu, Jale; Kesercioglu, Teoman

    2009-01-01

    This paper examined high school students' attitudes toward the environment and their interest in learning about environmental protection with respect to gender. The questionnaire-based Relevance of Science Education (ROSE) Project data of 9th grade students were collected in Turkey from 1,260 students. Statistical analysis included tabulation of…

  12. Illegal Methamphetamine Drug Laboratories: A New Challenge for Environmental Health Professionals.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Skeers, Vicki M.

    1992-01-01

    Reports on clandestine drug laboratories for manufacturing methamphetamine; the formation of an interagency steering committee to address the problem; and the role Environmental Health professionals need to play as the problem becomes more prevalent across the United States. Provides background information on methamphetamine characteristics and…

  13. Environmental Education in Serbian Primary Schools: Challenges and Changes in Curriculum, Pedagogy, and Teacher Training

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stanišic, Jelena; Maksic, Slavica

    2014-01-01

    The protection of human health and the preservation of the environment are topics that form an integral part of the primary school curriculum in Serbia. However, research studies have shown that students do not have enough knowledge to contribute to the development of a healthy lifestyle and environmental awareness. The latest changes in school…

  14. Role of Iraqi Higher Education Institutes in Handling National/International Environmental and Health Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Al-Maliky, Salam J. Bash

    2012-01-01

    Huge environmental and health crises such as the use of Depleted Uranium (DU) munitions during the military activities against Iraq and the required responses are amongst the fields that Iraqi higher education institutions (HEIs) may have a crucial role. Similar international cases, such as Agent Orange (Vietnam), Three Mile Island (USA) and…

  15. 20+ Years of Environmental Education Centers in Greece: Teachers' Perceptions and Future Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yanniris, Constantinos

    2015-01-01

    For the first time after decades of expansion and systematic innovative practice, environmental education in Greece faces an uncertain future as a result of the contemporary political and economic crisis. This research aims to contribute to the international exchange of good practices by focusing on the effects and functions of the Greek network…

  16. Future Research Challenges for Incorporating Uncertainty in Environmental and Ecological Decision-Making

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Environmental decision-making is extremely complex due to the intricacy of the systems considered and the competing interests of multiple stakeholders. Additional research is needed to acquire further knowledge and understanding of different types of uncertainty (e.g., knowledge, variability, decisi...

  17. Other Challenges in the Development of the Orbiter Environmental Control Hardware

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gibb, J. W.; Mcintosh, M. E.; Heinrich, S. R.; Thomas, E.; Steele, M.; Schubert, F.; Koszenski, E. P.; Wynveen, R. A.; Murray, R. W.; Schelkopf, J. D.

    1985-01-01

    Development of the Space Shuttle orbiter environmental control and life support system (ECLSS) included the identification and resolution of several interesting problems in several systems. Some of these problems occurred late in the program, including the flight phase. Problems and solutions related to the ammonia boiler system (ABS), smoke detector, water/hydrogen separator, and waste collector system (WCS) are addressed.

  18. Peace and Environmental Education for Climate Change: Challenges and Practices in Lebanon

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naoufal, Nayla

    2014-01-01

    As noted in the literature reporting on the impact of climate change, it does not only bring about environmental degradation, i.e. ecological violence, but it may also provoke increased intercommunity and interstate violence. This article examines the implications of this relationship between climate change and increased violence for environmental…

  19. The New Latino South and the Challenge to Public Education: Strategies for Educators and Policymakers in Emerging Immigrant Communities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wainer, Andrew

    2004-01-01

    The lack of resources devoted to educating Latinos in emerging immigrant communities is generating negative educational outcomes and de facto educational segregation in the South. While Latino immigrants continue to dominate employment in the meat processing, service, and construction sectors in these communities, they are underrepresented on…

  20. Emergent Teacher-Researchers: A Reflection on the Challenges Faced when Conducting Research in the English Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Blakemore, Helen

    2012-01-01

    The following narrative reflects on the dilemmas and problems faced by inexperienced researchers working within the field of education. Focusing on a research project completed in fulfilment of an MA in Teaching and Learning, the article recounts the decisions made by one emergent researcher and evaluates how far the chosen methods may have helped…

  1. Environmental sustainability assessments of pharmaceuticals: an emerging need for simplification in life cycle assessments.

    PubMed

    De Soete, Wouter; Debaveye, Sam; De Meester, Steven; Van der Vorst, Geert; Aelterman, Wim; Heirman, Bert; Cappuyns, Philippe; Dewulf, Jo

    2014-10-21

    The pharmaceutical and fine chemical industries are eager to strive toward innovative products and technologies. This study first derives hotspots in resource consumption of 2839 Basic Operations in 40 Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient synthesis steps through Exergetic Life Cycle Assessment (ELCA). Second, since companies are increasingly obliged to quantify the environmental sustainability of their products, two alternative ways of simplifying (E)LCA are discussed. The usage of averaged product group values (R(2) = 3.40 × 10(-30)) is compared with multiple linear regression models (R(2) = 8.66 × 10(-01)) in order to estimate resource consumption of synthesis steps. An optimal set of predictor variables is postulated to balance model complexity and embedded information with usability and capability of merging models with existing Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) data systems. The amount of organic solvents used, molar efficiency, and duration of a synthesis step were shown to be the most significant predictor variables. Including additional predictor variables did not contribute to the predictive power and eventually weakens the model interpretation. Ideally, an organization should be able to derive its environmental impact from readily available ERP data, linking supply chains back to the cradle of resource extraction, excluding the need for an approximation with product group averages. PMID:25244162

  2. Responses of Emergent Behaviour in Headwater Catchments to Long-term and Short-term Environmental Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tetzlaff, D.; Soulsby, C.; Malcolm, I. A.; Brewer, M. J.

    2007-12-01

    Emergent behaviour of hydrological processes at the catchment scale often results in relatively simple and predictable functional characteristics which are underpinned by heterogeneous, complex processes at the small scale. It is unclear how such small-scale processes are affected by long- and short-term perturbations in forcing factors affected by various environmental changes. This leads to uncertainty in how emergent behaviour will change and how hydrology and hydrochemistry will respond at the catchment scale. A powerful resource in improving predictions of such responses is applying advanced statistical analysis to long-term data sets of conservative tracers, particularly in gauged catchments that are subject to marked environmental change. Changes in tracer behaviour can provide an integrated insight into the emergent response of system functioning and its non-linear characteristics. In this paper, we present the analysis of long-term tracer data collected since 1982 in 2 small (ca. 1km2) experimental catchments in the Scottish highlands. These have been affected by marked change and variability in driving variables of climate, land cover and rainfall chemistry: Annual rainfall ranged between 1490 and 2500mm and an average 1°C increase in air temperatures was observed over the monitoring period. In addition, forestry operations resulted in 70% of each catchment being clear felled. Finally, air pollution legislation targeting acid emissions has improved the quality of precipitation, resulting in a marked reduction in acid deposition. Long-term (20 year, weekly) time-series analyses of two tracers are used to assess changes in emergent catchment behaviour. Chloride input-output time series are analysed using a range of residence time models which highlighted non-stationarity in the catchment mean residence times (which ranged between 2-11 months for individual years) and corresponding residence time distributions. At the catchments scale these were driven

  3. Endocannabinoid Catabolic Enzymes Play Differential Roles in Thermal Homeostasis in Response to Environmental or Immune Challenge.

    PubMed

    Nass, Sara R; Long, Jonathan Z; Schlosburg, Joel E; Cravatt, Benjamin F; Lichtman, Aron H; Kinsey, Steven G

    2015-06-01

    Cannabinoid receptor agonists, such as Δ(9)-THC, the primary active constituent of Cannabis sativa, have anti-pyrogenic effects in a variety of assays. Recently, attention has turned to the endogenous cannabinoid system and how endocannabinoids, including 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) and anandamide, regulate multiple homeostatic processes, including thermoregulation. Inhibiting endocannabinoid catabolic enzymes, monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL) or fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), elevates levels of 2-AG or anandamide in vivo, respectively. The purpose of this experiment was to test the hypothesis that endocannabinoid catabolic enzymes function to maintain thermal homeostasis in response to hypothermic challenge. In separate experiments, male C57BL/6J mice were administered a MAGL or FAAH inhibitor, and then challenged with the bacterial endotoxin lipopolysaccharide (LPS; 2 mg/kg ip) or a cold (4 °C) ambient environment. Systemic LPS administration caused a significant decrease in core body temperature after 6 h, and this hypothermia persisted for at least 12 h. Similarly, cold environment induced mild hypothermia that resolved within 30 min. JZL184 exacerbated hypothermia induced by either LPS or cold challenge, both of which effects were blocked by rimonabant, but not SR144528, indicating a CB1 cannabinoid receptor mechanism of action. In contrast, the FAAH inhibitor, PF-3845, had no effect on either LPS-induced or cold-induced hypothermia. These data indicate that unlike direct acting cannabinoid receptor agonists, which elicit profound hypothermic responses on their own, neither MAGL nor FAAH inhibitors affect normal body temperature. However, these endocannabinoid catabolic enzymes play distinct roles in thermoregulation following hypothermic challenges. PMID:25715681

  4. Grand Challenge Problems in Environmental Modeling and Remediation: Groundwater Contaminant Transport (Partnerships in Computational Science)

    SciTech Connect

    Sharpley, Robert C.

    1997-12-01

    The over-reaching goal of the Groundwater Grand Challenge component of the Partnership in Computational Science (PICS) was to develop and establish the massively parallel approach for the description of groundwater flow and transport and to address the problem of uncertainties in the data and its interpretation. This necessitated the development of innovative algorithms and the implementation of massively parallel computational tools to provide a suite of simulators for groundwater flow and transport in heterogeneous media. This report summarizes the activities and deliverables of the University of South Carolina component of the Groundwater Grand Challenge project funded through the High Performance Computing grand challenge program of the Department of Energy from 1995 through 1997. Seven institutions were primarily involved in this project: Brookhaven National Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Princeton University, SUNY at Stony Brook, Texas A&M University, The University of South Carolina, and the University of Texas at Austin, with contributing efforts from the Westinghouse Savannah River Technology Center. Each institution had primary responsibility for specific research components, but strong collaboration among all institutions was essential for the success of the project and in producing the final deliverables. PICS deliverables include source code for the suite of research simulators and auxiliary HPC tools, associated documentation, and test problems. These materials will be available as indicated from each institution's web page or from the Center for Computational Sciences Oak Ridge National Laboratory in January 1998.

  5. Status of Environmental Management Initiatives to Accelerate the Reduction of Environmental Risks and Challenges Posed by the Legacy of the Cold War

    SciTech Connect

    2009-01-01

    Fifty years of nuclear weapons production and energy research in the United States during the Cold War generated large amounts of radioactive wastes, spent nuclear fuel (SNF), excess plutonium and uranium, thousands of contaminated facilities, and contaminated soil and groundwater. During most of that half century, the Nation did not have the environmental regulatory structure or nuclear waste cleanup technologies that exist today. The result was a legacy of nuclear waste that was stored and disposed of in ways now considered unacceptable. Cleaning up and ultimately disposing of these wastes is the responsibility of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). In 1989, DOE established the Office of Environmental Management (EM) to solve the large scale and technically challenging risks posed by the world's largest nuclear cleanup. This required EM to build a new nuclear cleanup infrastructure, assemble and train a technically specialized workforce, and develop the technologies and tools required to safely decontaminate, disassemble, stabilize, disposition, and remediate unique radiation hazards. The sites where nuclear activities produced legacy waste and contamination include the original Manhattan Project sites--Los Alamos, New Mexico; Hanford, Washington; and Oak Ridge, Tennessee--as well as major Cold War sites, such as Savannah River Site, South Carolina; the Idaho National Laboratory, Idaho; Rocky Flats Plant, Colorado; and Fernald, Ohio. Today EM has responsibility for nuclear cleanup activities at 21 sites covering more than two million acres in 13 states, and employs more than 30,000 Federal and contractor employees, including scientists, engineers and hazardous waste technicians. This cleanup poses unique, technically complex problems, which must be solved under the most hazardous of conditions, and which will require billions of dollars a year for several more decades. The EM program focus during its first 10 years was on managing the most urgent risks and

  6. A Study of the Emergence of Student Tacit Knowledge in Response to Environmental Images and Science Instruction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glass, Rory J.

    The purpose of this study was to identify the presence of students' tacit understandings as they apply to environmental science content, and to discover how these understandings emerge and are viewed and interpreted by teachers. Towards that end over ten hours of classroom video was recorded and analyzed, from both large urban and smaller urban classrooms. Additionally, interviews were conducted with 15 students and two teachers to gain insight into their thinking on an array of topics related to the environment and environmental reasoning. It was hypothesized that students' understandings and teachers' interpretations of them may be influenced by their personal experiences with the natural world. For that reason, demographic information and self-reports of experiences were used to determine the extent to which tacit understandings are influenced by environmental experiences, and whether tacit understandings differed significantly by gender. The results indicate that there are significant differences between students from larger and smaller urban school districts, and males and females, in their interpretation of various environmental scenes. The data suggests that at least some of these differences are directly related to the students' experiences. The data also suggests that teachers are well aware of the importance of these less formal understandings though they are not always able to integrate them into their instruction in a timely manner. It is argued here that science education must change its focus if it is going to meet the needs of a 21st Century citizenship, making it necessary to find ways to embrace the understandings that students bring with them to school; including those, perhaps even especially those, that are mainly tacit.

  7. Life cycle assessment for emerging materials: case study of a garden bed constructed from lumber produced with three different copper treatments

    EPA Science Inventory

    Although important data and methodological challenges facing LCA and emerging materials exist, this LCA captures material and process changes that are important drivers of environmental impacts. LCA methods need to be amended to reflect properties of emerging materials that deter...

  8. Environmental exposures to Florida red tides: Effects on emergency room respiratory diagnoses admissions

    PubMed Central

    Kirkpatrick, Barbara; Fleming, Lora E.; Backer, Lorraine C.; Bean, Judy A.; Tamer, Robert; Kirkpatrick, Gary; Kane, Terrance; Wanner, Adam; Dalpra, Dana; Reich, Andrew; Baden, Daniel G.

    2010-01-01

    Human exposure to Florida red tides formed by Karenia brevis, occurs from eating contaminated shellfish and inhaling aerosolized brevetoxins. Recent studies have documented acute symptom changes and pulmonary function responses after inhalation of the toxic aerosols, particularly among asthmatics. These findings suggest that there are increases in medical care facility visits for respiratory complaints and for exacerbations of underlying respiratory diseases associated with the occurrence of Florida red tides. This study examined whether the presence of a Florida red tide affected the rates of admission with a respiratory diagnosis to a hospital emergency room in Sarasota, FL. The rate of respiratory diagnoses admissions were compared for a 3-month time period when there was an onshore red tide in 2001 (red tide period) and during the same 3-month period in 2002 when no red tide bloom occurred (non-red tide period). There was no significant increase in the total number of respiratory admissions between the two time periods. However, there was a 19% increase in the rate of pneumonia cases diagnosed during the red tide period compared with the non-red tide period. We categorized home residence zip codes as coastal (within 1.6 km from the shore) or inland (>1.6 km from shore). Compared with the non-red tide period, the coastal residents had a significantly higher (54%) rate of respiratory diagnoses admissions than during the red tide period. We then divided the diagnoses into subcategories (i.e. pneumonia, bronchitis, asthma, and upper airway disease). When compared with the non-red tide period, the coastal zip codes had increases in the rates of admission of each of the subcategories during the red tide period (i.e. 31, 56, 44, and 64%, respectively). This increase was not observed seen in the inland zip codes. These results suggest that the healthcare community has a significant burden from patients, particularly those who live along the coast, needing emergency

  9. Somatic and heritable effects of environmental genotoxins and the emergence of evolutionary toxicology

    SciTech Connect

    Bickham, J.W.; Smolen, M.J.

    1994-12-01

    The genetic effects of environmental pollutants include mutations in somatic cells or germinal cells that are the direct result of exposure to toxicants. Biomarkers that detect such mutagenic effects have been developed and tested in field studies on wildlife populations. However, another class of genetic effects resulting from pollution exposure exists. Specifically, changes in allele frequencies of populations will occur as a result of population bottlenecks, inbreeding, or selection at loci critical for survival in polluted environments. We describe how such genetic alterations can be studied at the population level using the techniques of molecular genetics, and we predict the development of a new field, evolutionary toxicology, that will address such issues. 26 refs., 1 fig., 1 tab.

  10. Somatic and heritable effects of environmental genotoxins and the emergence of evolutionary toxicology.

    PubMed Central

    Bickham, J W; Smolen, M J

    1994-01-01

    The genetic effects of environmental pollutants include mutations in somatic cells or germinal cells that are the direct result of exposure to toxicants. Biomarkers that detect such mutagenic effects have been developed and tested in field studies on wildlife populations. However, another class of genetic effects resulting from pollution exposure exists. Specifically, changes in allele frequencies of populations will occur as a result of population bottlenecks, inbreeding, or selection at loci critical for survival in polluted environments. We describe how such genetic alterations can be studied at the population level using the techniques of molecular genetics, and we predict the development of a new field, evolutionary toxicology, that will address such issues. PMID:7713028

  11. Current and emerging environmentally-friendly systems for fouling control in the marine environment.

    PubMed

    Gittens, Jeanette E; Smith, Thomas J; Suleiman, Rami; Akid, Robert

    2013-12-01

    Following the ban in 2003 on the use of tributyl-tin compounds in antifouling coatings, the search for an environmentally-friendly alternative has accelerated. Biocidal TBT alternatives, such as diuron and Irgarol 1051®, have proved to be environmentally damaging to marine organisms. The issue regarding the use of biocides is that concerning the half-life of the compounds which allow a perpetuation of the toxic effects into the marine food chain, and initiate changes in the early stages of the organisms' life-cycle. In addition, the break-down of biocides can result in metabolites with greater toxicity and longevity than the parent compound. Functionalized coatings have been designed to repel the settlement and permanent attachment of fouling organisms via modification of either or both surface topography and surface chemistry, or by interfering with the natural mechanisms via which fouling organisms settle upon and adhere to surfaces. A large number of technologies are being developed towards producing new coatings that will be able to resist biofouling over a period of years and thus truly replace biocides as antifouling systems. In addition urgent research is directed towards the exploitation of mechanisms used by living organisms designed to repel the settlement of fouling organisms. These biomimetic strategies include the production of antifouling enzymes and novel surface topography that are incompatible with permanent attachment, for example, by mimicking the microstructure of shark skin. Other research seeks to exploit chemical signals and antimicrobial agents produced by diverse living organisms in the environment to prevent settlement and growth of fouling organisms on vulnerable surfaces. Novel polymer-based technologies may prevent fouling by means of unfavourable surface chemical and physical properties or by concentrating antifouling compounds around surfaces. PMID:24051087

  12. Responding to the coal-related environmental issues challenging the People`s Republic of China

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, X.

    1998-12-31

    China faces the world`s largest coal-related environmental problems. The Chinese government is giving increased attention to coal-related environmental problems through legislation and specific restrictions on coal use in some areas. This paper reviews the seriousness of coal-related pollution at the household, industry, and power sector levels, and suggests a strategy to reduce the growth rate in coal-related pollution over the next two decades. The most vigorous action will be to reduce local pollution which has the most serious public health impacts. China will probably eventually participate in international agreements to reduce the rate of growth in greenhouse gas emissions. This might provide an important opportunity for the transfer of advanced coal technologies from the US to China.

  13. Lifesaving emergency obstetric services are inadequate in south-west Ethiopia: a formidable challenge to reducing maternal mortality in Ethiopia

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Most maternal deaths take place during labour and within a few weeks after delivery. The availability and utilization of emergency obstetric care facilities is a key factor in reducing maternal mortality; however, there is limited evidence about how these institutions perform and how many people use emergency obstetric care facilities in rural Ethiopia. We aimed to assess the availability, quality, and utilization of emergency obstetric care services in the Gamo Gofa Zone of south-west Ethiopia. Methods We conducted a retrospective review of three hospitals and 63 health centres in Gamo Gofa. Using a retrospective review, we recorded obstetric services, documents, cards, and registration books of mothers treated and served in the Gamo Gofa Zone health facilities between July 2009 and June 2010. Results There were three basic and two comprehensive emergency obstetric care qualifying facilities for the 1,740,885 people living in Gamo Gofa. The proportion of births attended by skilled attendants in the health facilities was 6.6% of expected births, though the variation was large. Districts with a higher proportion of midwives per capita, hospitals and health centres capable of doing emergency caesarean sections had higher institutional delivery rates. There were 521 caesarean sections (0.8% of 64,413 expected deliveries and 12.3% of 4,231 facility deliveries). We recorded 79 (1.9%) maternal deaths out of 4,231 deliveries and pregnancy-related admissions at institutions, most often because of post-partum haemorrhage (42%), obstructed labour (15%) and puerperal sepsis (15%). Remote districts far from the capital of the Zone had a lower proportion of institutional deliveries (<2% of expected births compared to an overall average of 6.6%). Moreover, some remotely located institutions had very high maternal deaths (>4% of deliveries, much higher than the average 1.9%). Conclusion Based on a population of 1.7 million people, there should be 14 basic and four

  14. Environmental management practices in the Lebanese pharmaceutical industries: implementation strategies and challenges.

    PubMed

    Massoud, May A; Makarem, N; Ramadan, W; Nakkash, R

    2015-03-01

    This research attempts to provide an understanding of the Lebanese pharmaceutical industries' environmental management strategies, priorities, and perceptions as well as drivers, barriers, and incentives regarding the implementation of the voluntary ISO 14001 Environmental Management System. Accordingly, a semistructured in-depth interview was conducted with the pharmaceutical industries. The findings revealed a significant lack of knowledge about the standard among the industries. The main perceived drivers for adopting the ISO 14001 are improving the companies' image and overcoming international trade. The main perceived barriers for acquiring the standard are the lack of government support and the fact that ISO 14001 is not being legally required or enforced by the government. Moreover, results revealed that adopting the ISO 14001 standard is not perceived as a priority for the Lebanese pharmaceutical industries. Although the cost of certification was not considered as a barrier for the implementation of ISO 14001, the majority of the pharmaceutical industries are neither interested nor willing to adopt the Standard if they are not exposed to any regulatory pressure or external demand. They are more concerned with quality and safety issues with the most adopted international standard among the industries being the ISO 9001 quality management system. This study highlights the aspect that financial barriers are not always the hurdles for implementing environmental management strategies in developing countries and underscores the need for regulatory frameworks and enforcement. PMID:25673269

  15. Environmental Influences on Development of Type 2 Diabetes and Obesity: Challenges in Personalizing Prevention and Management

    PubMed Central

    Ershow, Abby G.

    2009-01-01

    Recent epidemic increases in the U.S. prevalence of obesity and diabetes are a consequence of widespread environmental changes affecting energy balance and its regulation. These environmental changes range from exposure to endocrine disrupting pollutants to shortened sleep duration to physical inactivity to excess caloric intake. Overall, we need a better understanding of the factors affecting individual susceptibility and resistance to adverse exposures and behaviors and of determinants of individual response to treatment. Obesity and diabetes prevention will require responding to two primary behavioral risk factors: excess energy intake and insufficient energy expenditure. Adverse food environments (external, nonphysiological influences on eating behaviors) contribute to excess caloric intake but can be countered through behavioral and economic approaches. Adverse built environments, which can be modified to foster more physical activity, are promising venues for community-level intervention. Techniques to help people to modulate energy intake and increase energy expenditure must address their personal situations: health literacy, psychological factors, and social relationships. Behaviorally oriented translational research can help in developing useful interventions and environmental modifications that are tailored to individual needs. PMID:20144320

  16. A comparison between integrated risk assessment and classical health/environmental assessment: Emerging beneficial properties

    SciTech Connect

    Sekizawa, Jun . E-mail: sekizawa@ias.tokushima-u.ac.jp; Tanabe, Shinsuke

    2005-09-01

    Both humans and wildlife are exposed to various types of halogenated organic compounds such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), typically old chemicals, and tris(4-chlorophenyl) methane (TCPM) and brominated flame retardants, some new chemicals, simultaneously. Classical risk assessment has evaluated health and ecological risks independently by experts from different disciplines. Taking into considerations the recent concerns about endocrine disrupting chemicals and the progress of research in related areas, we integrated and assessed data on exposure and potential effects in humans and wildlife. Comparisons were made for organ concentrations, body burdens of several organochlorine compounds (OCs), metabolic capacities between humans and various wildlife. When we integrate the knowledge on effects and exposure in humans and in wildlife, new insights were suggested about similarities and/or differences in potential effects among various human populations living on different foods and having different body burdens. Combining existing information with emerging knowledge of mechanisms of actions on endocrine disrupting chemicals after exposure to above chemicals during early developmental stages will further elucidate potential risks from exposure to those chemicals.

  17. Changing risk of environmental Campylobacter exposure with emerging poultry production systems in Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Brena, M C; Mekonnen, Y; Bettridge, J M; Williams, N J; Wigley, P; Sisay Tessema, T; Christley, R M

    2016-02-01

    Campylobacter is a leading cause of diarrhoea, and its presence in chickens is a significant risk for zoonotic infection. Poultry production is becoming increasingly intensive in Ethiopia and is incorporating more high-producing breeds into traditionally managed smallholdings, especially in peri-urban areas. This cross-sectional study sampled 219 household environments in one peri-urban and two rural areas of Ethiopia, and an additional 20 semi-intensive farms in the peri-urban district. Campylobacter was detected by polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-specific assays in 44 samples; 16 of which could be identified as C. jejuni. Flocks in the peri-urban area were at significantly greater odds of detection, including those which only kept indigenous birds under a scavenging system. It was also noted that scavenging flocks of exotic high-production birds (Rhode Island Red) were at slightly greater risk, perhaps as exotic birds are under more stress when kept under traditional management systems. We suggest that changes to the system of chicken production may alter the ecology and epidemiology of Campylobacter in the environment, chickens and people, which may drive emergence of new epidemiological patterns of disease. Further research is needed to determine the extent to which the current management intensification and the distribution programmes of exotic and/or improved indigenous birds may alter Campylobacter epidemiology, ecology and public health risk, before their widespread adoption. PMID:26160752

  18. An Examination of the Demographic and Environmental Variables Correlated with Lyme Disease Emergence in Virginia.

    PubMed

    Seukep, Sara E; Kolivras, Korine N; Hong, Yili; Li, Jie; Prisley, Stephen P; Campbell, James B; Gaines, David N; Dymond, Randel L

    2015-12-01

    Lyme disease is the United States' most significant vector-borne illness. Virginia, on the southern edge of the disease's currently expanding range, has experienced an increase in Lyme disease both spatially and temporally, with steadily increasing rates over the past decade and disease spread from the northern to the southwestern part of the state. This study used a Geographic Information System and a spatial Poisson regression model to examine correlations between demographic and land cover variables, and human Lyme disease from 2006 to 2010 in Virginia. Analysis indicated that herbaceous land cover is positively correlated with Lyme disease incidence rates. Areas with greater interspersion between herbaceous and forested land were also positively correlated with incidence rates. In addition, income and age were positively correlated with incidence rates. Levels of development, interspersion of herbaceous and developed land, and population density were negatively correlated with incidence rates. Abundance of forest fragments less than 2 hectares in area was not significantly correlated. Our results support some findings of previous studies on ecological variables and Lyme disease in endemic areas, but other results have not been found in previous studies, highlighting the potential contribution of new variables as Lyme disease continues to emerge southward. PMID:26163019

  19. A billion years of environmental stability and the emergence of eukaryotes: new data from northern Australia.

    PubMed

    Brasier, M D; Lindsay, J F

    1998-06-01

    Carbon isotopes through 6km of fully cored drill holes in 1.7 to 1.5 Ga carbonates of the Mount Isa and McArthur basins, Australia (which host the earliest known eukaryote biomarkers) provide the most comprehensive and best-dated delta 13C stratigraphy yet obtained from such ancient rocks. Both basins reveal remarkably stable temporal delta 13C trends (mean of -0.6% +/- 2% PDB [Peedee belemnite]) and confirm the impression of delta 13C stasis between 2.0 and 1.0 Ga, which, together with other evidence, suggest a prolonged period of stability in crustal dynamics, redox state of surface environments, and planetary climate. This delta 13C stasis is consistent with great stability in the carbon cycle controlled, we suggest, by P limitation of primary productivity. Recent evidence shows that P depletion is a major factor in obligate associations between photosymbionts and host cells. We argue that a billion years of stability in the carbon and nutrient cycles may have been the driving force that propelled prokaryotes toward photosymbiosis and the emergence of the autotrophic eukaryote cell. PMID:11541449

  20. Out of sight, out of mind: global connection, environmental discourse and the emerging field of sustainability education

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henderson, Joseph A.

    2015-09-01

    How might we understand the complex nature of our existence in the world, and what are the implications of such examination? Moreover, how might we go about engaging others in this practice and what are the complications of such an endeavor? Expanding on Quigley, Dogbey, Che and Hallo's findings, I consider the implications of human-environment connections and examine the difficulty of articulating such connections via photovoice methods in particular places. Further, I use a Foucauldian discourse lens to situate this connective process to larger political and social dynamics at work in their paper, and in environmental education in general. Implications for sustainability and sustainability education are then developed, along with suggestions for future research in this emerging field.