The Canadian Urban Environmental Health Research Consortium – CANUE

Photo source: CANUE

Canada is an urbanized country with over 80 per cent of Canadians living in urban areas and growing numbers of new immigrants that tend to settle in urban areas. To meet the need to learn how to design and modify cities to improve population health, the Canadian Urban Environmental Health Research Consortium (CANUE) was established in June 2016. Continue reading

Impacts assessment to support policy-making across scales: regional implications of global mercury policy

Source: CBS

Mercury is a toxic pollutant that poses risks to both human health and the ecosystem when emitted into the air and water. Public policies and treaties have been established in attempt to address these impacts. In the 1990s, Canadian policies targeting emissions from the metal production industry resulted in a reduction in mercury emissions. Recently, the United Nation’s Minamata Convention that was adopted in 2013 is expected to have shifts in the mercury emissions on a global scale. Continue reading

Investigating the Role of Transportation Models in Epidemiologic Studies of Traffic Related Air Pollution and Health Effects

It’s widely known that traffic related air pollution is associated with long-term health effects like cancers, cardiovascular or respiratory illnesses. But there’s more that could be learned about the short-term exposure to traffic-related air pollution.  In the first SOCAAR Seminar for 2015-16, Marianne Hatzopoulou, Associate Professor in the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Toronto discussed the application of transportation and emission models to investigate air pollution in the city of Montreal. The main research questions presented were: i) How can we improve measures of exposure? ii) What is the role of integrated transportation-dispersion models? Can transportation models replace atmospheric dispersion modelling? Continue reading

Engineering and DLSPH faculty secure internal grant to create new initiative on exposomics—the use of ‘omics to characterize environmental exposures

Many chronic diseases are now believed to be due to a combination of an individual’s genome and their cumulative environmental exposure.  Exposome, analogous to genome, is an emerging approach to assessing this exposure. Internationally very large research initiatives are planned or underway in this new field but there has been little activity to date in Canada. Internal funding has just been awarded to a team lead by Prof. Greg Evans to launch an exposomics research initiative, as a multi-disciplinary collaboration between the faculty of Applied Science and Engineering and the Dalla Lana School of Public Health. This three year project will bring together and leverage existing infrastructure, expertise, and research activities across our University. The objective will be to put in place a foundation of people, methods and pilot data needed to support large research proposals and help position our University to become a leader in this exciting new research field.