Research in Progress
Community Environmental Health

Humans depend on the quality of their home, urban, and recreational environments for health. However, hazards such as air pollution, exposure to chemicals, biological contaminants, noise, particulates and vibration frequently occur in community environments causing ill-health and disease.

CHER researchers focus on community environmental health issues such as urban smog, damp housing, bio-aerosols and noisy classrooms. By investigating these issues, researchers can assess exposures evaluate effects and suggest limits that protect health .

Current Research

Research Project Description More information
Acoustics and Noise Research Group The Group's objective is to optimize acoustical environments to the benefit of the health, safety, education, well-being and comfort of people. This involves Ecological and Engineering Acoustics Research. The objective is being achieved by the theoretical and experimental study of sound and its effects, and by the development of prediction tools, measurment techniques, control measures and strategies. Research group's website
Border Air Quality Study (BAQS) A combination of research projects aimed at evaluating the health impacts of air pollution in the Georgia Basin-Puget Sound International airshed.
BAQS Project website
Chemicals, Health and Pregnancy Study This study is investigating whether chemicals used as flame retardants (Polybrominated diphenyl ethers, or PBDEs) and stain repellants (Perfluorinated Compounds, or PFCs), which are found at low levels in all Canadians, have an influence on thyroid hormone levels during pregnancy. Study website
Cycling in Cities Cycling in Cities is a program of research that is investigating what factors encourage or discourage the use of bicycles for urban transportation. This research program includes a number of studies, outlined in the table below and described in more detail throughout the website. Cycling in Cities Project website
Cryptococcus gattii project Cryptococcus gattii is a microscopic yeast that is typically found in eucalyptus and other tropical and sub-tropical trees. It started showing up on Vancouver Island in 1999 - the first time ever the tropical fungus has been found in a temperate climate. Since 2001, the University of British Columbia, the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control, and the Vancouver Island Health Authority have been working together to deal with the problem. Project website
Firesmoke Portal CHER researchers have assembled the Firesmoke Portal to provide residents, health-care providers and public health authorities with easy-to-access, near-real-time information about fires, smoke and air-quality-related weather trends in British Columbia. Portal website
Langley Water & Health Study Water quality is one major factor that affects public health. In turn, there are many environmental factors that influence water quality. This study is examining the relationship between factors that influence water quality and the risk of gastrointestinal illnesses. Study website
West Nile Virus: A Study of Public Health Responses The goal of this study is to assess various public health responses to West Nile virus in order to prevent virus cases in British Columbia and elsewhere. Study website
Woodstove Exchange Study The Woodstove Exchange STudy (WEST) is a series of linked projects to assess the impacts of the stove exchange program in the Bulkley Valley Lakes District on community air quality and to investigate the potential improvements in health arising from the change to certified wood stoves. Study Website

Last reviewed November 19, 2007

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November 19, 2007