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Environmental Health I. Introduction


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Title: Environmental Health I. Introduction

Environmental Health I. Introduction
  • Shu-Chi Chang, Ph.D., P.E., P.A.
  • Assistant Professor1 and Division Chief2
  • 1Department of Environmental Engineering
  • 2Division of Occupational Safety and Health,
  • Center for Environmental Protection and
    Occupational Safety and Health
  • National Chung Hsing University

  • Instructors background
  • Course overview and grading policy
  • Overview of this course
  • Grading policy
  • References
  • Introduction of Environmental Health

Instructors background
  • Ph.D., Environmental Engineering, University of
    Michigan at Ann Arbor, U.S.A. (among the top 5
    graduate programs in U.S. News ranking)
  • Award
  • Government Scholarship Sole grantee in
    Environmental Engineering in year 2000.
  • Professional qualification
  • PE, Environmental Engineering (1989)
  • PE, Industrial Safety Engineering (1997)
  • CPA, ISO 14000 (1996, Naville Clark)
  • CPA, ISO 9000 (1997, Mercedes-Benz)
  • Professional Expertise
  • Environmental microbiology and nanobiotechnology
    (8 years)
  • Bioremediation of contaminated soils and
    groundwater (6 years)
  • Integrated quality, environmental, safety, and
    health management ( 5 year)

Dissertational Research
  • Rapid detection and enumeration of mycobacteria
    in metalworking fluids technology development
    and validation
  • Tools
  • Flow cytometry
  • Fluorescent antibody and nucleic acid dyes
  • Functionalized magnetic nanoparticle
  • Statistical data analysis
  • Contributions
  • Shortened test time by more than 95
  • Single colony-forming-unit sensitivity
  • 98 specificity
  • Good correlation over 4 orders of magnitude
  • Can effectively reduce health hazards and
    environmental burdens

Extended Research
  • Nano-emulsion novel industrial fluid
    formulations, groundwater remediation enhancer,
  • Ultrafine magnetic nanoparticles (1 nm)
  • Flow-Genomics an ultrasensitive and
    high-throughput single molecule detection
  • Instantaneous characterization of microbial
    ecosystems simultaneous identification of
    structural and functional roles of numerous
    microorganisms in a microbial ecosystem
  • Peptide Nucleic Acid Probes

Dioxin Study
  • University of Michigan Dioxin Exposure Study
  • Soil, blood, dust, and questionnaire
  • Data analysis
  • Modeling
  • Pattern analysis
  • Exposure pathway modeling
  • Conclusion
  • Age, sex, and BMI account for 50 of the
    variation in serum dioxins
  • Fish and game consumption, river activity, and
    specific occupation account for 1-6 of the
    variation in serum dioxins
  • Living on the contaminated lands, living within
    Midland and Saginaw counties account for 0.21.0
    of the variation in serum dioxins

Overview of this course (1)
  • Teaching goals
  • To equip students with fundamental knowledge in
    environmental health and enhance their
    comprehension of current environmental health
  • To help students be familiar with the links
    between environmental pollution sources and their

Overview of this course (2)
  • Main topics
  • Chemical and toxicology
  • Biological agents and epidemiology
  • Workplace hazards
  • Environmental hazards
  • Law and policy
  • Risk assessment
  • Others Energy and disaster response

Overview of this course (3)
  • Style
  • Fact and Engineering oriented
  • Understanding and memorization
  • Quantification and calculation
  • Group learning
  • Finish a group term project together

Grading policy
  • 1. All lectures, assignments and tests will be
    given in English. However, questions, term paper,
    and homework are allowed to be finished in
    Chinese or English.
  • 2. Homework will be handed out every 2 to 3
    weeks and a term paper will be assigned to each
    group of students, usually 2 students in a group.
    Late homework or term paper submission is not
    acceptable. Discussion is allowed but no copying
    (will get significant loss of points).
  • 3. Composition of final score
  • Midterm (30, close-book, 90 minutes) Final
    (35, open-book, 90 minutes)
  • Homework (20) Term paper (15)
  • Participation (5)
  • 4. Term paper requirements Font in size 12 and
    double space. 7 pages minimum and 10 pages
    maximum, not including references. References
    should be no less than 7 citations as journal
    articles, preferably in English. (Again, no
    copying or plagiarism. )

Group Term Paper
  • Why
  • Promotion of group learning and interaction
  • Chance to investigate the topic you are most
    interested in within environmental health realm
  • Getting familiar with the format of typical
    journal article writing
  • Environmental professionals need better
    communication skills than any other engineering

Week Topic
1 Introduction and scope
2 Basic toxicology
3 Epidemiology and workplace
4 Ambient air quality and air pollution
5 Food
6 Drinking water
7 Liquid waste
8 Solid waste
9 Midterm
10 Rodents and insects
11 Injury Control
12 Electromagnetic radiation
13 Environmental law
14 Monitoring and auditing
15 Risk assessment and management system
16 Energy
17 Disaster response
18 Final examination
Textbook and references
  • Textbook (not required)
  • Moeller, D.W., 2005. Environmental Health.
    Harvard University Press, 3rd edition (A copy
    will be available on reserve desk in NCHU
  • References
  • Bassett, W.H. Clays handbook of environmental
    health. 19th ed. Spon Press, 2004. New York.
    (Electronic resource, NCHU Library)
  • Worthington, David. Dictionary of environmental
    health Spon Press, 2003. New York. (Electronic
    resource, NCHU Library)
  • For lecturing slides, please refer to

Office hours and others
  • Office hours
  • Wednesday 11AM (noon) 12PM
  • Other time by appointment
  • Guest speakers (TBA)

  • Definition
  • In its broader sense, environmental health (EH)
    is the segment of public health that is concerned
    with assessing, understanding, and controlling
    the impacts of people on their environment and
    the impacts of environment on them. Moeller,
    D.W., 1997.
  • For human well-being, interactions are important
  • Defined more by the problems than by the
  • Subtle differences between EH professionals and
    Public health professionals

Defining the environment (I)
  • Inner versus outer environment
  • Principle protective barriers
  • Skin
  • Gastrointestinal tract
  • Lung membrane

Defining the environment (II)
  • Personal versus ambient environment
  • Personal environment have control
  • ambient environment have no control

Defining the environment (III)
  • Gaseous, liquid, and solid environments
  • Gaseous particulates and gases
  • Liquid discharged into water
  • Solid solid wastes, esp. plastics and toxic

Defining the environment (IV)
  • Four aspects that affect peoples health
  • Chemical
  • Biological
  • Physical
  • Socioeconomic

Assessing the problems
  • Population growth and urban environments
  • Steps to assess the problems
  • Determining the sources of contaminants and
    nature of them
  • How and pathway of contact
  • Measuring the effects
  • Applying controls
  • Need an interdisciplinary team
  • Need to recognize technological advent in
    analytical instrumentation

Cancer and the personal environment
  • Tobacco use
  • Physical activity
  • Weight maintenance
  • Healthy diet
  • Alcohol

Systems approach
  • Pollution may only change into different forms
  • Examples
  • Incineration
  • Air-cleaning systems
  • Chemical treatment of liquid waste
  • Discharge of sulfur oxides and nitrogen oxides
  • Discharge of chlorofluorocarbons
  • Discharge of carbon dioxides

Intervention and control
  • Three different intervention models
  • Clinical
  • Public health
  • Environmental stewardship

  • Recognition of the problems and capability to
    control them. However, greatest good is
  • Take system approach and avoid exchange of
  • Sustainable development makes sense
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