Pollution

Heat, fire, smoke and health in Washington’s ag industry
Blog entry | September 03, 2020
Right now, some 140,000 agricultural workers are picking apples, peaches and other crops at the peak of Washington’s harvest season, just as Gov. Jay Inslee has declared a state of emergency in response to wildfires burning across the state.
Measuring the pandemic’s impact on air pollution
Blog entry | September 02, 2020
After stay-at-home orders were issued in Washington state in response to the pandemic, some of the most harmful traffic-related air pollutants dropped significantly in Seattle, according to a research team led by the UW Department of Environmental & Occupational Health Sciences (DEOHS).
A model of scientific integrity
Blog entry | August 17, 2020
Lianne Sheppard fought recent efforts by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to suppress the role of academic scientists advising the agency on environmental policy. The University of Washington professor also battled back against attacks on her research into the link between cancer and glyphosate, a widely used herbicide.
Why are there drug-resistant bacteria in seal poop?
Blog entry | August 07, 2020
“When I explain my thesis project to people, they are always excited to hear about me working with marine animals,” Alexandria Vingino said. “And then I explain to them that I'm not really working with marine animals, I'm working with what’s in their poop.”
Facing wildfire smoke amid COVID-19
Blog entry | July 20, 2020
When Jake asked me to go on a sunset hike, I knew what was coming. We were in our favorite place: the Methow Valley of Eastern Washington. When we crested the top of the mountain, a few sunrays peeked through the clouds, lighting up the fertile valley below. Still, when he got down on one knee, I was surprised, and overcome with happiness. Life seemed full of promise.
The Duwamish, Seattle’s hometown river
Blog entry | July 06, 2020
Join author BJ Cummings for a virtual book launch on July 11 at 2 pm, hosted by the Duwamish Longhouse and Cultural Center. Register here  
Can trees clean up jet pollution?
Blog entry | June 25, 2020
  Frederick Law Olmsted, who designed New York’s Central Park, once called trees the lungs of the city. Trees and shrubs filter a variety of air pollutants, including nitrogen dioxide, ozone and particulate matter. But could they also benefit communities near airports by absorbing harmful ultrafine particles from aircraft exhaust?
Safe fishing on the Duwamish
Blog entry | June 23, 2020
Fishing for fun, food and cultural connection is a way of life in the Pacific Northwest. View the videos
Latino Center honors DEOHS scholars
Blog entry | May 19, 2020
Magali Blanco and Gabino Abarca from the University of Washington School of Public Health were selected to take part in the inaugural Latino Center for Health Student Scholars Fellowship program.
The water protector
Blog entry | April 14, 2020
Ola i ka Wai. Water is life. Tyler Gerken MS, Environmental Health Hometown: Kea’au, Hawai’i Island, HI Future plans: A career in the US Public Health Service, perhaps as an environmental health officer for the National Park Service or the Indian Health Service
Catching waterborne disease before it spreads
Blog entry | March 23, 2020
Water is essential for life, but in communities with inadequate sanitation, it can also spread diseases like polio, typhoid and hepatitis A. By monitoring wastewater and water sources contaminated by wastewater for pathogens in fecal matter, researchers and public health workers can help stop waterborne illnesses in their tracks.
Fighting children's asthma at home
Blog entry | February 25, 2020
Rural children with asthma whose homes have an indoor air cleaner are 72% less likely to have an unplanned clinic or hospital visit than children in homes with no air cleaners, according to a study from the University of Washington and partners in the Yakima Valley.
The odds of death from wildfire smoke
Blog entry | January 09, 2020
Washington is expected to face increasingly smoky summers. A few things you can do to prepare now:
Saving lives and the planet
Blog entry | January 06, 2020
 
DEOHS professor named editor of leading environmental health journal
Blog entry | December 15, 2019
As a physician with a passion for science, social justice and patient care, Dr. Joel Kaufman gravitated to public health from his earliest days as a college student pursuing BA and MD degrees in a combined six-year program.
Mapping jet pollution at Sea-Tac Airport
Blog entry | December 03, 2019
Communities underneath and downwind of jets landing at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport are exposed to a type of ultrafine particle pollution that is distinctly associated with aircraft, according to a new University of Washington study that is the first to identify the unique "signature" of aircraft emissions in Washington state.
Collaborating on clean air research
Blog entry | September 23, 2019
  A group of air pollution researchers from the University of Washington, led by the Department of Environmental & Occupational Health Sciences (DEOHS), met with Chinese counterparts in Beijing earlier this month and returned enthusiastic about opportunities for future research collaborations.
Air pollution and emphysema
Blog entry | August 13, 2019
Long-term exposure to air pollution—especially ozone pollution—accelerates the progression of emphysema of the lung, according to a newly published study
Mapping environmental inequality
Blog entry | July 15, 2019
Washington is on the road to 100 percent clean energy with the passage of a new law championed by Gov. Jay Inslee that sets targets for achieving zero-carbon electricity by 2045.
Well water safety
Blog entry | May 31, 2019
Kori VanDerGeest MPH, Environmental Health Hometown Albuquerque, NM Future plans To conduct community-based public health research. “What really excites me about what I did in the last two years is being able to respond to a community need.” - Kori VanDerGeest
“What are they getting exposed to out there?”
Blog entry | April 29, 2019
J.C. Harris lives on a cul-de-sac directly in the flight path of Sea-Tac International Airport’s third runway. For Harris, a University of Washington study analyzing air traffic’s impact on air quality in communities near and below Sea-Tac flight paths is far from academic.
Traffic pollution and dementia
Blog entry | April 22, 2019
How much traffic-related air pollution are you exposed to every year in Seattle? UW researchers will drive tens of thousands of miles this year along a meticulously mapped route through Seattle to answer that question. (In a hybrid vehicle, of course.)
Changing the rules on toxic emissions
Blog entry | January 17, 2019
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to change how it tallies up the costs and benefits of rules limiting mercury emissions—a move two University of Washington experts say would make it harder to protect people from the harmful health effects of air pollution.   
Mapping Washington’s environmental health disparities
Blog entry | January 09, 2019
It was at the height of California’s worst drought on record that Esther Min saw for herself the power of data to help low-income families. “People’s water bills were skyrocketing, wells were drying up, families were driving miles away to buy bottled water,” said Min, who was working on a water-access study in the Salinas Valley in 2014.
A matter of scientific integrity
Blog entry | December 19, 2018
A group of 15 air pollution experts—including three scientists from the UW Department of Environmental & Occupational Health Sciences (DEOHS)—say recent changes made by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have damaged the quality and credibility of the EPA’s scientific review process for federal clean air standards.
Let's talk about wildfire smoke and your health
Blog entry | October 17, 2018
[Reprinted with permission from the new 2018 edition of Northwest Public Health magazine.]  For the past two summers, the western part of the United States has experienced extraordinary wildfire seasons.
A splash of color in a smoke-choked summer
Blog entry | August 30, 2018
The Pacific Northwest’s “new normal” is starting to feel like old normal in Washington’s Methow Valley. This is the fifth summer in a row that wildfire season has hit the Methow Valley especially hard, causing hazardous smoke conditions that persist for weeks and leaving residents feeling trapped and isolated.
Dirty skies and your health
Blog entry | August 09, 2018
We’re learning more all the time about the health risks of breathing dirty air—and the news is alarming. Michael Yost, DEOHS professor and chair.
Arsenic in the water
Blog entry | June 04, 2018
Nothing about Lake Killarney’s idyllic appearance hints at the potential cancer risk lying below the surface. The shallow lake in South King County, Washington, is ringed with homes and the headquarters of the international relief organization World Vision. The lake is favored by waterfowl, rich with aquatic plants and stocked with rainbow trout, largemouth bass and other fish.
What’s in the air
Blog entry | May 24, 2018
Graeme Carvlin PhD, Environmental and Occupational Hygiene Hometown Flemington, NJ