Lecture 1: Human Health and the Environment

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Environmental Science
Jovan Stefanovic

Human Health and the Environment Lecture 1: Welcome to Human Health and the Environment EESA10H3 What is environmental health? • According to the WHO: “In its broadest sense, environmental health comprises those aspects of human health, disease and injuries that are determined or influenced by factors in the environment.” • This includes the study of both the direct pathological effects of various o Chemical o Physical o Social Environment (housing, urban development, land use and transportation) What is the environment? • Environment is everything that affect a living organism • Effect of environment on human health is so great o Air o Water o Soil o Manmade environment The Environment • We cannot choose what happens in the natural environment but sure can help in changing the events that take place in the environment • Social environment – are stressed even though we do not know about it which affects health • Our health is affected by our environment • Most of them we can list some we neglect • Definitely know that the environment affects our health greatly • Factories, buildings and sewage comprise to form an artificial environment • We face the growth of the human population • Population is growing very fast – exponentially • Our consumption has increased incredibly because of the population • In a couple of decades the number of people on the planet will exceed the sustainable number of people the earth can hold • Cannot support because of resources and the environment • We are using renewable and nonrenewable resources faster than they can grow • Renewable resources (trees, water) and non renewable resources (fossil fuels, oil, coal) • The bigger question is can the resources of the earth be replenished at this rate of growth? • A change in the earth is done so by humans – a form of alteration • We are aware of issues of environmental health concerns • Due to economic growth people are drawn to money and earning and seem not to take notice of the destruction on their health • There are some people that have attempted to protect the environment • The first public health practices were installed at the end of the 19 century when Life Support EESA10H3 S there was an outbreak in cholera • It was instigated by a contaminated sewage water supply • This resulted in people drinking polluted water which contributed to them getting very sick and in many instances led to death • Diarrhea is the biggest problem in the world in children of five years of age and younger • This is again because of the consumption of impure water • It is a big difficulty in developing countries around the world Environmental health • Human population and consumption • Human alteration of Earth is substantial and growing • Protecting the environment has been a mainstay of public health practices since 1878 •
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