EESA10 Midterm Notes.docx

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Environmental Science
Jovan Stefanovic

Lecture 1: Introduction What is environmental health? 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: chemical, physical, 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,  *Air, *Water, *Soil, *Manmade environment 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,  Environmental factors responsible for 25 % of all preventable diseases,  Diarrhea and respiratory infections heading in the list,  Rich & poor, *African Americans & Hispanic & Whites,  Developed & developing countries Types of Hazards Chemical hazards (chemicals in air, water, soil and food) Biological hazards (bacteria, viruses, parasites, allergens, animals such as bees and poisonous snakes) Cultural (social) hazards (unsafe working conditions, poor diet, drugs, drinking, driving, poverty) Physical hazards (radiation, fire, tornado, hurricane, volcanic eruption, and earthquake) Lecture 2: Airborne Hazards and Human Health Case Study 1: London Smog 1952  Since the beginning of the industrial revolution, the use of coal was extensive  Winter 1952: 6-10 day smog o Air was stagnant o Air was colder than usual o Coal was the main eating source during the smog (soft coal releases sulphurs when burned) o No air circulation, low pressure, air was stagnant with sulphuric acid and particulate present o Burning sensation in the throat, difficult tow work or go outside o 4000 people died during the 6 days, mostly people with chronic diseases (asthma) and some healthy people  High amounts of sulfur dioxide and smoke were directly proportional with number of deaths  Waited for nature to raise temperature and redistribute the air  British government changed approach in coal use and started using other sources of energy Case Study 2: Indonesian Fires, 1997  Burning the forests to clear for agriculture  Controlled by monsoon rains that extinguished the fires  Masnoon rains: 1997  Mansoons arrived late and area as huge as continental USA burned  Even air plane crashed due to extensive smoke 1 OUTDOOR AIR QUALITY: Six common Air Pollutants Health Effects of Outdoor Pollution  Asthma o Particulates and/or SO2 can irritate bronchial passages leading to severe difficulties in breathing o From 1983-1993 prevalence in the US increased 34% o The incidence among children in Australia was one in five, a doubling of the rate in less than 20 years o Indoor air pollution is also significant  Chronic Bronchitis o Occurs when an excessive amount of mucus is produced in bronchi which results in a lasting cough o SO2 and smoking is related to Chronic bronchitis  Pulmonary emphysema o Weakening of the wall of alveoli, they become enlarged and lose their resilence o NO2 is related to emphysema  Lung cancer, heart disease, toxic poisoning, eye irritation, birth defects: caused by exacerbated by exposure to air pollution Seven Common Outdoor Air Pollutants  Primary air pollutants o Particulate matter o Carbon monoxide o Nitrogen oxides o Sulphur oxides o VOC (volatile organic compounds) o Lead  Secondary air pollutant o Ground level ozone 1. Particulate matter (PM)  Particles found in the air (dust, soot, smoke, and liquid droplets). Can be big or small  Vehicles, factories, construction sites, tilled fields, stone crashing, burning  Some are formed in the air  can cause serious health effects 2. Carbon monoxide  Odourless, colourless gas  Incomplete burning of carbon containing fuels  Heaters, woodstoves, gas stoves, fireplaces, water heaters, automobile exhaust, tobacco smoke  1 000 people die each year in USA as result of CO poisoning  Sometimes confused with flu or food poisoning  Fetuses, infants, elderly and people with heart and respiratory illnesses are at high risk for adverse health effects  Interferes with the delivery of oxygen in the blood to the rest of the body  Worsen cardiovascular conditions, fatigue, headache, weakness, confusion, disorientation, loss of coordination, nausea, dizziness, and death. Prevention of carbon monoxide poisoning  Never leave a car engine running in a shed or garage or in any enclosed space  Proper selection, installation, and maintenance of appliances  Correct use -Good ventilation -Use CO detectors 2 3. Nitrogen oxides (NOx)  Form in any type of combustion process  Involve in formation of ground level ozone, they dissolve in water  Form nitrate particles, acid aerosols  Contribute in formation of acid rain  Transported over long distances  Nitric acids are not that much soluble in the water, that is why they travel far in respitory air ways, that’s why they can damage lungs more than sulfuric acids 4. Sulphur oxides (SOx)  Burning of coal and oil, extraction of metals from ore  SO2 dissolve in water vapor to form acids  Acids react with other gases and particles and form sulphates  Transported over long distances  Respiratory illnesses, aggravates existing heart and lung diseases  Sulfuric acids are mostly damaging the upper air ways 5. VOC volatile organic compounds  Look for paint that is free of VOC, less smell  They valproate at room temperature  They contribute information of photochemical smoke  Variety of organic compounds used as solvent in industry, automobiles  Hydrocarbons: methane, butane, propane 6. Lead (Pb)  Metal  Vehicles and industrial sources  Leaded gasoline  Particularly effect young children  Deposit on soil and water  Children accidentally can eat soil 1. Ozone (03) also known as “ground level ozone” VOC + NOx + Heat + Sunlight = Ozone  Summertime pollutant, time of the day, seasonal, climate  Good in stratosphere *Bad on a ground *Transported on long distances  Lung damage (small airways)  Shortness of breath, chest tightness, coughing and nausea  Irritate and damage eyes, nose, sinuses and throat  Affects people who exercise a lot outdoors Smog  Smoke + fog + smog (first used in 1905)  2 types: o Photo chemical smog: L.A type of smog, or brain air o Sulphurous smog: London type of smog, or industrial smog  Don’t need to know chemical formulas INDOOR AIR POLLUTION:  Contains 2-5 times higher concentration of hazardous pollutants than outdoor air 3  Buildings more airtight to conserve energy inadequate ventilation  People spend about 90% of their time indoors  Children, pregnant women, elderly, people with chronic illnesses Sources of Pollutants  Building materials and furnishing  Asbestos insulation  Wet or damp carpet  Furniture made of certain pressed wood products  Cleaning products and air fresheners  Personal care and hobbies  Pesticides, Cooking, Bathing, Heating (combustion of oil, coal, wood), Radon, Smoking, Outdoor pollution Health Effects of Indoor Air Pollution…  Hard to detect by our senses  Symptoms are similar, need years to develop  Headaches, tiredness, dizziness, nausea, itchy nose, scratchy throat, Cancer, asthma Sic Common Indoor Air Pollutants  Asbestos  Formaldehyde  Mold and Moisture  Secondhand Smoke  Radon Gas  Air Dust Asbestos  Group of six different fibrous minerals  Have separable long strong and flexible heating resistant fibers o Used in: Building materials (roofing shingles, ceilings and floor tiles, paper products, and asbestos cement products), Friction products (automobile brake and transmission parts), Heat resistant fabrics, packaging and coatings. Asbestos in environment  Do not evaporate into air or dissolve in water, do not break down  It is safe if you leave it in the walls, but if you change stuff it will disturb the fires n the ceiling and it will become airborne fibers  Fibers and particles may remain suspended in the air and carried long distances  Not able to move through soil, they do not dissolve in water, and do not evaporate How might you be exposed to asbestos?  People working in some industries  People living near these industries  During demolition work and re-modeling  From drinking water (natural or asbestos containing cement pipes) Health effects of Asbestos  Affect the lungs and the membrane that surrounds the lungs  Asbestosis- Scar-like tissue, not in general public  Difficulty breathing, often cough, heart enlargement, lead to disability and death  Plaques in the pleural membranes  Increase of cancer (lung, stomach, esophagus, pancreas, kidney),risk increase with smoking 4  Not related to birth defects  Low levels can be measured in urine, faces, mucus Formaldehyde in Indoor Air  Volatile organic compound (VOC), naturally occurring gas, colorless, strong smell  Become a gas at normal room temperature  Also released by burning wood and natural gas, by automobile and by cigarettes  Glue or adhesives in press wood products (particleboards, MDF, plywood)  Preservatives in some paints and cosmetics  Coatings that provide permanent press quality to fabrics and draperies  Finish used to coat paper products  Certain insulation materials Health effects of Formaldehyde  Watery eyes, burning sensation in the eyes, nose and throat  Nausea, coughing, chest tightness, Asthmatic reactions  Skin rashes, Allergic reactions, cancer Mold, Moisture and Indoor Air Quality  Need moisture, do not need standing water, high relative air humidity o Bathrooms and kitchens, Gym areas, Locker rooms, Leaky roof areas, Damp basements  On or within wood, paper, carpet and foods  The way to control indoor mold growth is to control moisture (maintaining the relative humidity between 30-60%)  Often undiscovered  Produce tiny spores  Discoloration and odor problems Mold Health effects  Major source of indoor allergens, Trigger asthma, Produce Toxins, Produce Irritants Secondhand Smoke  Contain 4 000 compounds (CO and Formaldehyde), 40 are carcinogens  Each year 3 000 lung cancer deaths in nonsmoking adults in USA  Eye, nose and throat irritation  Affect the cardiovascular system, Higher risk of asthma, pneumonia, ear infection, bronchitis in children Radon Gas  Colourless, odourless, tasteless  Naturally occurring  Radioactive decay of uranium  From soil and rock into basements and lower floors  Dissolved in groundwater, pumped into wells and then into homes  In construction building bocks Air Dust and Indoor Air Quality  Heating and cooling systems of force air systems  Dust particles, Pollen or other debris  Duct Cleaning Service Providers Lecture 3: Waterborne Hazards and Human Health 5 Liquid natural capitol  We are surrounded by water, even our body, and our planet is a watery planet. 71% of earth’s surface is covered with water, but not all the water is available for our consumption because the water is mainly salty water like oceans and sea. Not much fresh water that we can use for human and animal consumption. Water is important because no animal or species can live without water. We always think about drinking and everything like household, cleaning, cooking and everything like industrial purposes (a lot of water used) and more for agricultural; for watering plants to get crops and food.  Geomorphology- discusses about sculpting the earths surfaces (change the shape): water is one of the factors that change the shape water erosion or water/water soil erosion (moving of the soil) Moderating climate  water is universal solvent (known in chemistry)  dissolve many different chemicals, its dissolving rocks and doing great jobs even in long time, like dissolving and moving particles  With water flow pollutants and waste are moved to rivers/lakes/pounds/ocean  Withdrawal- total amount of water removed from a river, lake or aquifer for any purpose.  Some may be returned to the source for reuse  Use about 54% of the world's reliable runoff of surface water and could be using 70-90% by 2025 How much fresh water is available?  Not much fresh water on earth st  1 circles represents total amount of water mostly in ocean and saline lakes (Only 2.6% fresh water is available). In 2.6% fresh water mostly is captured as ice caps and glaciers and is not readily available  It MIGHT be available if this trend of global warming continues because it is melting self so quickly  Ground water is significant amount of the fresh water  Only .014% is readily accessible fresh water, most of the water is possible to find in lakes due to soil moisture  Huge amount of water is from soil, but we tend to forget about it  Some amount of water is from atmosphere or Biote (living things, forest, water stroes from leaves or animals, living organism), and water from river How do we use this water? World’s problems  Some areas have lots, but the largest rivers are far from agricultural and population centers  Lots of precipitation arrives during short period but cannot be collected and stored  Shrinking of lakes and rivers How do we use the world’s fresh water? Canada  Most fresh water we use for power plant cooling 64%, industry (15%) and public sector (12%) and only 9% in Agriculture United States  much more water is used for agriculture sector which means, U.S use much water for irrigation or agriculture  Power Plant cooling (38%), Agriculture (41%), Public (10%), Industry (11%) China  Much more use in Agriculture (67%), Public (6%), Industry (7%)  Note: 85% of water use for irrigation is consumed and not returned to it’s water basin How do we use water in households?  Flushing toilet is always the problem; too much water used for conventional toilet (30%),  Showering (35%),Laundry (20%) , drinking (10%), and cleaning (5%)  Canada has plenty of water supplies for us, but some people in other places in the world don’t have water for basic things like drinking and cooking. 6 Hydrological poverty  One out of six people do not have regular access to clean water; safe water to drink (Northern parts of Africa, and Asia people travel many km just to get a bucket of fresh water and they spend half of the day doing it )  Diarrheal deaths kill over 2 million children annually. Diarrheal is very common in developing countries, it is number 1 cause of death in children younger than 5yrs old. The biggest risk. Adults are also under high risk, but kids are in a huger risk. Kids are dying now. Water and Your health Drinking water  Annual reports on local drinking water quality o It is our right to know what we are drinking, what chemicals we are consuming in one glass of water. Our municipal must provide us with records, they have to check our tap water every day and provide annual report  Naturally pure water & distillate water o There is no such thing is 100% NATURALLY PURE WATER, water naturally has to have minerals which are good for our health like calcium, potassium, magnesium, sodium, salt; we need salt, carbonate sulfate we need all that. IF THERE was PURE WATER it is called DISTALLATE WATER  Natural content of minerals in water  Surface water- In urban areas mostly rivers, lakes and reservoirs o Our water comes from Lake Ontario. Lakes, rivers, and reservoirs are called surface water and is used for our water supply  Ground water- In rural areas (wells) How is drinking water treated?  Water from rivers, lakes and reservoirs  When municipals take water from lakes they need to clean it because it’s not ready for drinking FIRST  Settling tanks o Leave water in tanks to settle down for coarse particles, because after it is easier to clean and purify it then add coagulant agents  Addition of coagulants- dirt and contaminants form clumps that settle to the bottom of the tank o Add specialized designed chemicals called Coagulants are added to the purify water to make clumps. Clumps that settle down in the bottom that coagulate together and are heavier so they settle down on the bottom so therefore easier to remove then it is moved to filtering  Filtering o Water goes through filtering for bacteria, viruses and protozoa’s; some microbes found in water o Filtering is very good for bacteria but not so much for viruses o Special techniques are needed for viruses  Chemical treatment (disinfection, granulated activated charcoal, ion exchange resins, reverse osmosis) o Chlorine is one type of disinfectant o Granulated activated charcoal; chemical mainly cleaning organic contaminants o Ion exchange resins better with heavy metals like mercury, lead o Reverse osmosis good technique for metals and inorganic contamination Groundwater  Groundwater is cleaner with less concentration of toxic elements, because it is naturally filtered  The reason why it is naturally filtered because of soil; soil is working as filter and soil is filtered because it consists of different types of chemicals and water percolating through the soil reacting with the different 7 chemicals and purifying that way. That is why groundwater is naturally filtered, and often doesn’t need any treatments. It is pure and clean enough it doesn’t need any treatment  Ground water percolating through the soil can dissolve some minerals Chemical Treatment of the drinking Water  The most common disinfectants used for disinfection for water are chlorine, chloramines, hyper chlorate they mean chlorination Chlorination of Drinking Water: Its Benefits and Risks Risk:  That chemical reacts with organic matter in water, always have organic matter (algae etc)  Some bio-products (DBP) are formed through this process, and are so complicated  These chemicals have adverse effect to our health. Data is not completely clear that these chemicals are harmful to humans, but we do for animals. We def. Need more data regarding this problem  This chemical is cacogenics and cause spontaneous abortion in pregnant woman Benefit:  It kills all germs, and makes the water safe to drink  What she wants is for us to balance the risks and benefits of chlorine, and are there higher risks or vice- versa, and see the balance and provide her with an answer. Give her an opinion Contaminants in Drinking Water EPA sets standards for approximately 90 contaminants (EPA stands for Environmental Perfection Agency, CEPA means Canadian blah, blah, blah) This agency does a lot of work regarding many different issues, the agency also sets standards for soil, water based on research. 1. Microbes in Drinking Water  Fecal Coliform and E. coli bacteria- contamination with human and animal wastes, diarrhea, cramps, nausea, headaches, and severe symptoms like: renal failure, coagulation disorders o E. coli is a germ that comes from water in the sewage, animal, or human waste.  Salmonella typhi- typhoid fever (high fever, abdominal pain, constipation) o very common in the 19 century  Shigella sp.- more sever abdominal cramping with blood and mucus in the stool o dehydration; because lots of diarrhea  Vibrio cholere- life threatening, rice-water stools o Huge outbreak of cholera because of contact with drinking water of sewage. Many deaths in the 19th century.  Norwalk viruses, enteroviruses, adenoviruses- all results in diarrheal illness  Hepatitis A- this type is transmitted by contaminated water and causes liver inflammation. This is the ONLY WATER BORNE disease that doesn’t effect gastric intestinal tract  Cryptosporidium- parasite that enter lake and rivers through sewage and animal wastes  Giardia lamblia- enters lake and rivers through sewage and animal wastes, diarrhea, vomiting, cramps) 2. Radionuclide  Alpha emitters  Beta/photon emitters  Combined Radium 226/ 228  Radon gas- gas in the air and it can dilute in the water. Then we can consume/expose it through two ways: 1. Breathing this gas 2. Drinking water o These radionuclide chemicals change DNA, they transform and change genetic material and can lead to increase risk of getting cancer  Damage to DNA, increase risk of getting cancer 8  Radon: a colour less, odour less gas o Produced by the radioactive decay of uranium, in particular uranium- 238 with a half life of 4.5 billion years, and other radioactive minerals o Radon decays radioactive isotopes Polonium-218 and Polonium-214 which also produces alpha particles that if breathed or swallowed can cause several types of cancer o Uranium is found in several types of minerals associated with granites, metamorphic gneiss, and sedimentary rock derived from weathering and erosion of granite o Radon can build up in the basement of a home constructed on soils with high radon levels or if the basement walls are built of granite 3. Inorganic Contaminants  Arsenic o can be naturally found in water. Some reservoirs ground water can be contaminated with arsenic (after many years of drinking water, possibly experience skin damage, problems with circulatory system, higher risk of getting cancer) o Arsenic is metalloid, based on characteristic and environmental mobility it is studied with metals, and it is inorganic of course o High concentration f arsenic are poisonous and lower concentrations can cause skin cancer and melanosis (dark pigmentation of the skin) problems with circulatory system o Arsenic occurs in more than 200 different minerals that are relatively rare and usually in low concentrations o Arsenic dissolves very readily in groundwater and can move long distances form its source o When many sources combine, arsenic can concentrate in toxic level in the groundwater  Fluoride o some municipalities add fluoride into drinking water to promote dental health. Then one scientist suggested that we add fluoride in water so we can have better healthier teeth. But the BAD thing is some of us who are more sensitive may experience or get bone disease. o Fluoride concentration greater than 1.5 mg per liter can become potentially harmful, it can cause dental fluorosis and skeletal fluorosis (bone disease) o Fluoride is found in the common mineral fluorite and in certain types of micas and clay minerals, highest concentrations of fluoride are found in regions of volcanic activity o Unlike arsenic ions, the highly reactive fluoride ions in the groundwater tend to form chemicals compounds within short distanc
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