U.S. EPA Aging Initiative List Serve February 2011
- EPA Recognizes Four Communities that are Improving the Environment and Quality of life for their Older Residents
- Supporters of Building Healthy Communities for Active Aging
- Administrator Lisa P. Jackson, Opening Statement Before the House Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Energy and Power
- Occupational Solvent Exposure and Brain Function
- Evaluation of the Cardiovascular Effects of Methylmercury Exposures
- Applications for 5th annual Building Healthy Communities for Active Aging the 2011 are due July 11, 2011
- Location Efficiency and Housing Type - Boiling it Down to BTUs
- America Walks Campaign to Make America a Great Place to Walk
- EPA Request for Letters of Interest on Technical Assistance for Sustainable Communities Building Blocks
- FY2011 Community Action For A Renewed Environment (CARE) RFP
- Fiscal Year 2011 Pollution Prevention Grant Program
- The Environmental Justice Small Grants Program
- Extreme Event Impacts on Air and Water Quality with a Changing Global Climate
- 2011 Environmental Education Grants
- ASA Applications For New Ventures in Leadership
- Transdisciplinary Research on Fatigue and Fatigability in Aging (R01)
- Functional Links between the Immune System, Brain Function and Behavior (R21)
- Using Systems Science Methodologies to Protect and Improve Population Health
- Translational Research at the Aging/Cancer Interface (TRACI) (R01)
EPA Recognizes Four Communities that are Improving the Environment and Quality of life for their Older Residents
EPA recently recognized four communities for helping to reduce air pollution and improve the quality of life through smart growth efforts, which refers to the design of neighborhoods that reduce driving and environmental harm.
These four communities are receiving EPA's Building Healthy Communities for Active Aging awards because of their commitment to active lifestyles that are supported by creating extensive walking and biking opportunities for older adults and persons of all abilities. Communities that are creative in their design of how they grow not only protects the environment by reducing air pollution and reducing water contaminants, but also fosters economic vitality and enhances quality of life.
"Communities that recognize that design matters contribute to the quality of life of persons of all ages and the environment," said John Frece, director of EPA's Office of Sustainable Communities. "When communities invest in diverse means to get around and build active aging into our daily lives, they receive the environmental dividends of both a healthy environment and a better quality of life for residents of all ages."
The Building Healthy Communities for Active Aging awards recognizes communities that have excelled in strategies, planning and programs that support active aging and smart growth. The Achievement Award, the top honor, is awarded to communities for overall excellence in building healthy communities for active aging. The Commitment Award recognizes communities that have developed and begun to initiate a specific plan to implement smart growth and active aging principles.
- Fairfax County Department of Neighborhood and Community Services, VA.
- Philadelphia Corporation on Aging, PA.
This year's awards booklet includes updates on previous winners including;
Communities self nominate for the award. A panel of judges selects the winners each year. Applications for 5th annual Building Healthy Communities for Active Aging the 2011 are due July 11, 2011.
Supporters of Building Healthy Communities for Active Aging
Twenty new organizations added their support to the award and recognition program Building Healthy Communities for Active Aging bring the total number of supporters to 60 organizations. Supporters help us spread the word about past winners and opportunities for new communities to apply to be recognized. If your organization would like to join this movement, please contact Kathy Sykes at email@example.com or (202) 564-3651.
- American Planning Association (APA)
- Association of Jewish Aging Services
- B'nai B'rith International
- Catholic Health Association of the United States
- Cleveland Foundation
- Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups
- Easter Seals Project ACTION
- Gray Is Green: The National Senior Conservation Corps
- Gray Panthers
- National Asian Pacific Center on Aging
- National Association of Regional Councils
- National Caucus and Center on Black Aged
- National Center on Senior Transportation
- New York Academy of Medicine
- Partners for Livable Communities
- Rails-to-Trails Conservancy
- Walkable and Livable Communities Institute
- WellMed Charitable Foundation
II. News, Research, Reports and Presentations
Administrator Lisa P. Jackson, Opening Statement Before the House Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Energy and Power
As prepared for delivery - Mr. Chairman and members of the Committee, thank you for inviting me to testify about Chairman Upton's draft bill to eliminate portions of the Clean Air Act, the landmark law that all American children and adults rely on to protect them from harmful air pollution.
The bill appears to be part of a broader effort in this Congress to delay, weaken, or eliminate Clean Air Act protections of the American public. I respectfully ask the members of this Committee to keep in mind that EPA's implementation of the Clean Air Act saves millions of American children and adults from the debilitating and expensive illnesses that occur when smokestacks and tailpipes release unrestricted amounts of harmful pollution into the air we breathe.
Last year alone, EPA's implementation of the Clean Air Act saved more than 160,000 American lives; avoided more than 100,000 hospital visits; prevented millions of cases of respiratory illness, including bronchitis and asthma; enhanced American productivity by preventing millions of lost workdays; and kept American kids healthy and in school.
EPA's implementation of the Act also has contributed to dynamic growth in the U.S. environmental technologies industry and its workforce. In 2008, that industry generated nearly 300 billion dollars in revenues and 44 billion dollars in exports.
Yesterday, the University of Massachusetts and Ceres released an analysis finding that two of the updated Clean Air Act standards EPA is preparing to establish for mercury, soot, smog, and other harmful air pollutants from power plants will create nearly 1.5 million jobs over the next five years.
To see the entire opening statement, read more...
Road traffic noise and stroke: a prospective cohort study
Eur. Heart J. 2011: ehq466v1-ehq466.
Epidemiological studies suggest that long-term exposure to road traffic noise increases the risk of cardiovascular disorders. The aim of this study was to investigate the relation between exposure to road traffic noise and risk for stroke, which has not been studied before.
Methods and results: In a population-based cohort of 57,053 people, the researchers identified 1,881 cases of first-ever stroke in a national hospital register between 1993-1997 and 2006. Exposure to road traffic noise and air pollution during the same period was estimated for all cohort members from residential address history.
Conclusion: The authors found that "...residential exposure to road traffic noise was associated with risk for stroke, with a 14% higher risk per 10 dB higher exposure to noise for all participants and a 27% higher risk per 10 dB higher exposure to noise for participants above 64.5 years. This is the first study on the association between transport noise and risk for stroke, as previous studies on transport noise focused mainly on hypertension and ischaemic heart disease." Read more..
Occupational Solvent Exposure and Brain Function
Tang CY, Carpenter DM, Eaves EL, Ng J, Ganeshalingam N, Weisel C, et al. 2011. Occupational Solvent Exposure and Brain Function: an fMRI Study. Environ Health Perspect :-. doi:10.1289/ehp.1002529
Background: Deficits in cognitive function have been demonstrated among workers chronically exposed to solvents, but the neural basis for these deficits has not been shown.
Objectives: Functional MRI (fMRI) was used to compare pathophysiological changes in brain function between solvent exposed and control workers.
Methods: Painters, dry-wall tapers, and carpenters were recruited from the following unions: International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, District Council 9 in New York City; District Council 21 in Philadelphia; Carpenters union in New Jersey. Twenty-seven solvent exposed and 27 control subjects of similar age, education, and occupational status completed the N-Back working memory test during fMRI. After control for confounders (age, lifetime marijuana, cocaine and alcohol use, blood lead, symptoms of depression, verbal intelligence), voxelwise group analysis and regional activation levels were compared and then correlated with an index of lifetime solvent exposure.
Results: Solvent-exposed workers' performance on the N-Back was significantly worse than controls. Activation of the anterior cingulate, prefrontal and parietal cortices, areas serving working memory function and attention, was also significantly lower for solvent-exposed relative to controls. After control for confounders, a negative correlation between lifetime solvent exposure and activation in these same regions was observed among the solvent-exposed.
Conclusions: This study is one of the few to document neural structures affected by exposure to solvents. Our findings provide a biological mechanism for the neurobehavioral deficits in working memory and attention that have previously been reported by other groups studying the effects of chronic exposure to solvents. These imaging markers, that are consistent with the neurobehavioral measures in our subject population, are consistent with altered brain pathology caused by prolonged exposure to solvent mixtures during construction work. Read more...
Evaluation of the Cardiovascular Effects of Methylmercury Exposures
Roman HA, Walsh TL, Coull BA, Dewailly E, Guallar E, et al. 2011 Evaluation of the Cardiovascular Effects of Methylmercury Exposures: Current Evidence Supports Development of a Dose-Response Function for Regulatory Benefits Analysis. Environ Health Perspect doi:10.1289/ehp.1003012
A growing body of evidence suggests methylmercury (MeHg) exposure can also lead to increased risks of adverse cardiovascular impacts in exposed populations. EPA assembled authors of this paper to participate in a workshop, where we reviewed the current science concerning cardiovascular health effects of MeHg exposure via fish and seafood consumption and provided recommendations concerning whether cardiovascular health effects should be included in future Hg regulatory impact analyses.
Findings: The researchers found the body of evidence exploring the link between MeHg and acute myocardial infarction (MI) to be sufficiently strong to support its inclusion in future benefits analyses, based both on direct epidemiological evidence of a MeHg-MI link and MeHg's association with intermediary impacts that contribute to MI risk. Although additional research in this area would be beneficial to further clarify key characteristics of this relationship and the biological mechanisms that underlie it, we consider the current epidemiological literature sufficiently robust to support the development of a dose-response (D-R) function. Conclusions: We recommend the development of a D-R function relating MeHg exposures with MIs for use in regulatory benefits analyses of future rules targeting Hg air emissions. Read more...
III. New Resources and Opportunities
Indoor Air Quality in Homes
The EPA protocols and DOE guidelines are intended for voluntary adoption by weatherization assistance programs, federally funded housing programs, private sector home performance contracting organizations, and others working on residential retrofit or remodeling efforts. Together, the complementary documents will: provide a robust and practical set of resources for retrofit contractors, trainers, and program administrators; help improve the quality of the work performed in this expanding industry; promote occupant health and safety; and drive consumer demand for energy efficiency retrofit services.
Why EPA is developing voluntary Healthy Indoor Environment Protocols for Home Energy Upgrades?
Millions of American homes will be retrofitted in the coming years to improve energy efficiency or make them more "green." Integrated healthy home and energy efficiency retrofit activities can lower utility costs for Americans and improve indoor air quality in homes at the same time. However, there is the potential for weatherization and other energy efficiency retrofit activities to negatively impact indoor air quality and public health - if the appropriate home assessment is not made before work begins and issues that may impact indoor air quality are not appropriately addressed. These Protocols provide guidance for conducting such home assessments and also provide the specific responses necessary to maintain or improve indoor air quality in conjunction with energy efficiency retrofits or other remodeling activities.
The Protocols are intended to enhance the ability of other federal agencies, industry standard organizations, state and local programs, and the home energy retrofit industry (i.e., home weatherization, energy efficiency retrofit, and housing rehabilitation professionals) to better integrate health protections into energy focused programs. Read more...
Department of Energy (DOE) Workforce Guidelines for Home Energy Upgrades (See the DOE Webpage on the Guidelines.
Aging and Public Health—Rural and Environment Award
The Rural and Environment Award is a new award, sponsored by the Aging and Public Health Section (A&PH) of the American Public Health Association (APHA). The purpose of the award is to recognize individuals in public health research who have made a significant difference to understanding the impact that rural location and/or environment have on aging and public health. Research can focus on rural issues and environment issues separately or jointly on both areas. An overriding goal of the award program is to recognize individuals and their research efforts that have the potential to improve the health and functional status of older people. There is interest in understanding the meaning and consequences of living in rural communities.
Deadline: February 11, 2011. Read more...
IV. Building Healthy Communities - Sustainable Communities
Applications for 5th annual Building Healthy Communities for Active Aging the 2011 are due July 11, 2011. For more information.
Location Efficiency and Housing Type - Boiling it Down to BTUs
How and where we construct our communities has an enormous effect on our energy consumption. Buildings and transportation together account for about 70 percent of energy use in the United States and are responsible for about 62 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. Creating more energy-efficient communities and buildings would reduce our impact on climate change and save people money on household energy costs. It could also help the U.S. to become less reliant on foreign fuel and other non-renewable sources of household energy.
EPA, in partnership with the Jonathan Rose Companies, has analyzed the energy use associated with a range of development approaches. The study, Location Efficiency and Housing Type - Boiling it Down to BTUs (PDF) (17 pp, 112K, About PDF) contrasts development in conventional, automobile-dependent locations with more location-efficient, transit-oriented locations; multifamily housing construction with single-family detached and attached houses; and conventional cars and homes with their energy-efficient counterparts (e.g., Energy Star homes and hybrid cars). The paper finds that a home's location and access to transit - in other words, its location efficiency - are as important to reducing energy use as are energy-efficiency measures in homes and cars. For more information.
America Walks Campaign to Make America a Great Place to Walk
America Walks is advancing "walkability," a vision that streets and neighborhoods are safe and attractive public places that encourage people of all ages, abilities, ethnicities, and incomes to walk for transportation, exercise, and recreation. Working with a national network of organizations interested in increasing walking and bicycling through changing the physical environment and developing programs and educational tools, they developed their 2011-2013 Strategic Plan, A Campaign Plan to Make America a Great Place to Walk (PDF) (11 pp, 230K, About PDF), to address:
- Promoting active, affordable and healthy daily lifestyles;
- Increasing job equity and food access; and
- Bringing safe pedestrian infrastructure to the forefront of transportation appropriations.
As a result of working with America Walks' health, equity, and business partners, such as AARP, American Heart Association, America Public Transportation Association, and Safe Routes to School National Partnership, a key focus area of the plan and its measurable outcomes is transit access for aging adults, people with disabilities and launching community-based speed reduction campaigns.
The strategic plan specifically includes a goal to provide people with access to transit to jobs, and for aging adults, people with disabilities and low income persons. The plan recognizes these groups have limited access to privately owned vehicles to reach their destinations. In addition, it includes a measureable goal:
"By 2013 complete a study of the best practices of data collection techniques and efforts to improve transit and pedestrian connectivity and service levels. Include a focus on job access and aging in place."
V. Pharmaceuticals in the Environment
The Drug Enforcement Administration's Second National Drug Take Back Day
What: The purpose of this National Take Back Day was to provide a safe and secure location for persons who wanted to dispose of unwanted and unused prescription drugs. DEA, in conjunction with state and local law enforcement agencies throughout the United States, conducted the first ever National Prescription Drug Take Back Day on Saturday, September 25, 2010.
The Second National Drug Take Back Day is a great opportunity for those who missed the first event or who have subsequently accumulated unwanted, unused prescription drugs, to safely dispose of them.
When: April 30, 2011
Why: This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. More than seven million Americans currently abuse prescription drugs, according to the 2009 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration's National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Each day, approximately, 2,500 teens use prescription drugs to get high for the first time according to the Partnership for a Drug Free America. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including the home medicine cabinet.
There are also environmental consequences of disposal of unused medications. Drugs that are dumped down drains and toilets can end up in our lakes, streams, and watersheds. By participating in the drug take-back day you will protect public health and safety and protect the environment.
Where: Further information about the second National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, including a link to locate a collection site near you, will be posted on this website. Read more...
VI. Intergenerational Activities
2011 Rachel Carson Poetry, Essay, Photography and Dance Contest
The 5th Annual Rachel Carson Intergenerational Sense of Wonder Contest is underway. Teams may submit a poem, an essay, photograph or a dance video that captures the sense of wonder you see, hear, and feel in nature. Entries must be developed by a multi-generational team of two or more individuals-with at least one each representing the younger and older generations.
The contest takes its names from a book written by Carson and published posthumously 45 years ago, The Sense of Wonder. It reflects Carson's desire to have adults share with youth a sense of wonder about nature and help discover its joys and beauty. The contest seeks to spur and instill that same sense of wonder among all generations.
Teams will share through one of these distinct mediums their own interactions and reflections on the wonders of nature. Mixed media entries are also welcome, such as a photo accompanied with a poem or essay. Dance video entries can be of performers or capture movements and visible changes in nature from dawn to dusk.
The deadline for entries is Friday, June 10, 2011.
The contest is sponsored by the U.S. EPA, the National Center for Creative Aging Creative the Dance Exchange, the Rachel Carson Council, Inc., and Generations United. For more information about the contest and to see the works of previous winners please read more...
VII. EPA Funding Opportunities
EPA Request for Letters of Interest on Technical Assistance for Sustainable Communities Building Blocks
The Sustainable Communities Building Blocks Program seeks to provide technical assistance to 20 communities on the use of those tools. As a result of this technical assistance, selected local and/or tribal governments will increase their capacity to successfully implement smart growth and sustainable communities, development approaches that protect the environment, improve public health, create jobs, expand economic opportunity, and improve overall quality of life.
Letters of interest must be submitted via email to Kevin Nelson no later than February 23, 2011, at 3:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. If you have questions about this solicitation, please contact Kevin Nelson (202-566-2835, firstname.lastname@example.org).
FY2011 Community Action For A Renewed Environment (CARE) RFP
This request for proposals (RFP) announces the availability of funds and solicits proposals from eligible entities for financial assistance through the Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE) competitive grant program. CARE is a unique community-based, community-driven, multimedia demonstration program designed to help communities understand and reduce risks due to toxic pollutants and environmental concerns from all sources. For more general information on the CARE program.
Fiscal Year 2011 Pollution Prevention Grant Program
EPA is announcing the opportunity to submit proposals under the P2 grant program. Under the authority of the Pollution Prevention Act (PPA)of 1990, EPA anticipates that approximately $4.1 million will be available to support P2 projects proposed by state agencies, state colleges or universities, federally-recognized tribes, and intertribal consortia during FY 2011. The Regions will award P2 grants and/or cooperative agreements to support state and tribal technical assistance programs that address the reduction or elimination of pollution by businesses across all environmental media: air, water and land.
Deadline: March 28, 2011. Read more...
The Environmental Justice Small Grants Program
The Environmental Justice Small Grants Program (EJSG) is designed to provide funding for eligible applicants for projects that address local environmental and public health issues within an affected community. The EJSG Program is a multi-statute program designed to help communities understand and address their exposure to multiple environmental harms and risks.
Deadline: March 31, 2011. Read more...
Extreme Event Impacts on Air and Water Quality with a Changing Global Climate
The EPA, as part of its Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program, is seeking applications proposing the development of assessments, tools and techniques, and demonstration of innovative technologies for providing information and capacity to adequately prepare for climate-induced changes in extreme events in the context of air and water quality management. A goal of this RFA is to seek a better understanding of the hazards (the extreme events) and to establish ways for climate scientists, impact assessment modelers, air and water quality managers, and other stakeholders to co-produce information necessary to form sound policy in relation to extreme events and their impact on air and water quality under a changing climate.
In addition to regular awards, this solicitation includes the opportunity for early career projects. The purpose of the early career award is to fund research projects smaller in scope and budget by early career PIs. Please see Section III of this Request for Applications (RFA) for details on the early career eligibility criteria.
Deadline: April 18, 2011. Read more...
2011 Environmental Education Grants
EPA is currently working on the Requests for Proposals for the 2011 Environmental Education Grant Program. It is expected to be released in February. Please sign up by clicking the blue button to the right to be electronically notified when the RFPs are available. Read more...
VIII. Other Funding Opportunities
ASA Applications For New Ventures in Leadership
The American Society on Aging (ASA) is accepting applications until February 15, 2011for the 2011-2012 class of New Ventures in Leadership (NVL), a leadership development program for professionals of color in aging.
Deadline: February 15, 2011. Read more...
Mechanisms of Functional Recovery After Stroke (R01)
The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke solicits applications from institutions/organizations that propose to find brain mechanisms to improve and develop new approaches to functional recovery after stroke.
Deadline: May 7, 2011. Read more...
Transdisciplinary Research on Fatigue and Fatigability in Aging (R01)
NIH is soliciting research grant applications on fatigue and fatigability in aging.
Deadline: May 7, 2011. Read more...
Functional Links between the Immune System, Brain Function and Behavior (R21)
The National Institute of Mental Health, solicits research grant applications to study neuroimmune molecules and mechanisms involved in regulating normal and pathological functions of the central nervous system.
Deadline: May 16, 2011. Read more...
Using Systems Science Methodologies to Protect and Improve Population Health
NIH solicits applications to apply one or more system science methodologies to public health and health care system problems and contribute knowledge that will enhance effective decision making.
Deadline: September 7, 2011. Read more...
Translational Research at the Aging/Cancer Interface (TRACI) (R01)
This announcement, issued by the National Institute on Aging, encourages research grant applications from institutions/organizations that propose translational research in the overlapping areas of human aging and cancer.
Deadline: September 7, 2011. Read more...
IX. Other Fellowships and Opportunities
Reporters and Editors Are Invited To Apply For 2011 "Medicine In The Media" Course
Medicine in the Media:
The Challenge of Reporting on Medical Research
July 13-16, 2011. Hanover, New Hampshire
Deadline: February 28, 2011
American Heart Disease Awareness Month
Great Backyard Bird Count
Feb 18-21, 2011
National Poison Prevention Month
Women's History Month
Save Your Vision Month
Groundwater Awareness Week
March 6-12, 2011
Association for Gerontology in Higher Education (AGHE) Annual Conference
March 17-20, 2011
World Water Day
March 22, 2011
Brownfields Annual Conference
April 3-5, 2011
American Planning Association Annual Conference
April 9-12, 2011
National Parks Week
Society for Human Ecology XVIIIth International Conference
Human Responsibility & Environmental Change: Planning, Process, and Policy
April 20-23, 2011
Las Vegas, Nevada
April 22, 2011
American Society on Aging /National Council on Aging Annual Conference
San Francisco, CA
May Older American's Month
Mental Health Awareness Month
Lyme's Disease Awareness Month
American Geriatrics Society
The Friesen Conference Secretariat
May 25-26th, 2011
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Environmental Design Research Association Annual meeting
XI. Call for Abstracts
APHA call for abstracts is open.
Deadlines: Feb 7-11, 2011. Read more...
"Growing Old in a Changing Climate: Exploring the Interface Between Population Aging and Global Warming"
May 25-26, 2011
Abstract Deadline: February 15, 2011. Read more...
Gerontological Association of America.
Deadline: March 15, 2011. Read more...