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2009 News and Events Archive

Featured Stories | Multimedia | People In The News | Grant Applications Sought | Grants Awarded | Past Events

Special Announcements
  • Columbia Center conference will focus on ten years of research in children's environmental health. [Read More]
Featured Stories
Dr. Alexander Kerr Coral Reef Biodiversity as a Management Tool
“20% of the world’s coral reefs have been effectively destroyed” according to The Status of Coral Reefs of the World: 2004.  In addition, the report predicts that 24% of the world’s reefs are under imminent risk of collapse.  Coastal development, global climate change, overfishing, and runoff from pollution have all contributed to the decline.  But why should we care?
[Read More]


Dr. Jose L. Jimenez is an Associate Professor in the Department of Chemistry and a Fellow of the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado at Boulder Taking the Haze out of Air Quality Models
Having a bad air day? Hard to breathe? The distant mountains are no longer visible and the stratospheric ozone hole has expanded? The probable cause -- its likely due to aerosols, those pesky particles ranging in size from nanometers to tens of millimeters that are emitted from tailpipes, smokestacks, and forest fires.
[Read More]


Dr. Will Clements from Colorado State University with a SiZeR Looks Aren’t Everything
How can you tell when a stream is just a shadow of its former self—when it’s so polluted that the fish, plants, and bugs you’d expect to find just aren’t there any more?
[Read More]


EPA Awards Competitive Grants for Students to Design Sustainable Technologies that Help Environment and Economy
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has awarded 42 grants to teams of college and university students across the country who will design creative technologies to sustainability challenges in the developed and developing world.
[Read More]


EPA STAR Research Finds Water Quality Improvement after Fertilizer Ban
Study shows a 28% total phosphorous reduction 1 year after implementing a municipal ordinance limiting the application of lawn fertilizers containing phosphorus.
[Read More]


Computational Toxicology $3.2M Awarded to the University of Houston for a Comp-Tox Developmental Toxicity Center
The Texas Indiana Virtual STAR (TIVS) Center will contribute to the evolution of more reliable chemical risk assessments by developing high throughput in vitro and in silico screening models of developmental toxicity.
[Read More]


The Learning Barge on the James River UVA Students Making the Learning Barge a Reality
UVA students are constructing a floating education center to teach students and the public about the impacts of water pollution on the James River (and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay), the importance of wetlands, and the importance of sustainable technologies.
[Read More]


Smokestack with smoke Study Provides Evidence that Prenatal Exposure to Environmental PAHs May Be Linked to Lower Children’s IQ Scores
The Columbia Center for Childrens Environmental Health (CCCEH), co-funded by EPA and NIEHS has published a study in the journal Pediatrics finding evidence of a link between levels of a common urban air pollutant and childrens IQ test scores.
[Read More]


Spraying pesticides Scientists Expect Wildfires to Increase as Climate Warms in the Coming Decades
Researchers at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences found that the smoke and particles resulting from increased wildfires, due to climate change, will adversely affect air quality. The study, funded by grants through EPA's Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, was published in the June 18th issue of Journal of Geophysical Research.
[Read More]


Spraying pesticides EPA Grant to University of Chicago for Research on Food Allergy Triggers
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has awarded a $433,100 grant to the University of Chicago to investigate how allergic reactions to food are initiated. The research is expected to lead to improved methods to assess whether pesticides produced in genetically engineered plants can trigger food allergies, which impact more than 11 million Americans each year.
[Read More]


Vitural Community Source: http://www.msphds.org/ Previous EPA STAR Fellow Dr. Ashanti Johnson Pyrtle receives the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring
Dr. Johnson Pyrtle, a a past EPA STAR fellow, was one of more than 100 science, math, and engineering teachers and mentors named today by President Obama to receive two prestigious Presidential Awards for Excellence.
[Read More]


child coughing image EPA, University of Michigan to Research Health Effects of Roadway Pollution on Children
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced a $1.4 million joint study with the University of Michigan on the health effects of air pollution on children living near the nation’s heavily traveled thoroughfares.
[Read More]


Venture Capital Summit Summary Report image Venture Capital Summit Summary Report Now Available
EPA has released a report that contains summaries of the comments made by participants during the EPA-Venture Capital Community Summit. The report also includes three presentations that were made at the Summit to provide background information for the participants.
[Read More]



http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/images/imagerecords/7000/7968/namerica_ceres_2007220.jpg Mapping Community Risks to Climate Change
EPA ASPH Fellow Colleen E. Reid and NCER funded researchers at the University of Michigan and Harvard have published a paper in EHP defining an approach to identify population segments in specific geographic regions susceptible to adverse effects of heat waves. Cities can use this information to help coordinate heat emergency plans and identify interventions to reduce the preventable health effects of heat waves.
[Read More]


EPAs P3 Award Winners Celebrate a Green Future
(Washington, D.C. - April 21, 2009) EPA has announced the university teams who won the annual People, Prosperity and the Planet (P3) competition. The P3 award competition encourages college students to apply technology in innovative ways to tackle global environmental challenges.

Winners of this years awards and their projects are:

    University of Arizona Columbia University Massachusetts Institute of Technology Drexel University University of Tennessee - Knoxville University of South Florida
    University of Arizona Columbia University Massachusetts Institute of Technology Drexel University University of Tennessee - Knoxville University of South Florida
[Read More]


Nice Dear, but what is Sustainability?
At this years National Sustainable Designs Expo on the Mall which ran Saturday, April 18 through Monday, April 20 we saw some amazing ideas: a solar powered water heater, wetlands for cleaning up dairy wastewater, solar panels to remove salt from water, even a method for using the sun to disinfect water.
[Read More]


The Fifth Annual National Sustainable Design Expo
Scheduled to be held April 18-20, 2009 on the National Mall in Washington, DC. We will have over 40 P3 teams and over 30 non-profit and government exhibitors demonstrating their sustainable designs for alternative energy sources, agricultural applications, green chemistry, green buildings, sustainable water use, and many more sustainable technologies.
[Read More]


EPA Greenversations Blog: Smart Investments: Technology for the Planet and the Economy
April Richards, an environmental engineer with the Office of Research and Development (ORD), discusses SBIR impacts on green technologies.
[Read More]


NCER Launches new Community Based Risk Assessment Research Web Site
The Community Based Risk Assessment (CBRA) site discusses the evaluation of multiple chemical and non-chemical stressors faced by a communities, and the goals and needs of this program.


Algal Blooms in the Environment
We have all witnessed the pond, lake or stream that is covered by foam, scum or a mat of algae. Dont swim! Dont drink! And who would want to? One of the common culprits of this problem is cyanobacteria.
[Read More]


Child with Asthma Inhaler Rise in Particles in Indoor Air Increases Asthma Symptoms in Children
Researchers at Johns Hopkins found a direct correlation between increasing concentrations of particulate matter (PM) in indoor air and increased asthma symptoms in preschool children.
[Read More]


Kristin Gardner Protecting Our Streams in Ski Country
Love to ski? Enjoying breezing down the powdery snow on a crisp winter day and then retreating to the lodge for a warming libation? Something that good must have a downside.and if you havent thought about whether the pristine mountain streams are degrading from accelerated population growth and poor land-use planning, we are lucky to have STAR fellow Kristin Gardner worrying for us.
[Read More]


Research Suggests Reductions in Particulate Air Pollution May Lead to Increased Life ExpectancyResearch Suggests Reductions in Particulate Air Pollution May Lead to Increased Life Expectancy
Researchers funded in part by an EPA STAR grant have found that life expectancy can be increased by breathing cleaner air.
[Read More]


Linking Disease and Tropical Forest Destruction
Flu, West Nile virus, Lyme disease, anthrax, and leptospirosis are just a few of the common diseases that keep public health officials on the alert for outbreaks What is unique about these diseases are that they are transmitted from animals to humans, a type of disease called zoonotic. Understanding how pathogens are transmitted through animal populations is one critical link in developing control strategies to manage these diseases.
[Read More]

Decline of the Akepa, a Native Hawaiian Honeycreeper
The subspecies of Akepa on the Island of Hawaii is a tiny bird, about the size of a small finch. While the males are brilliant orange, the females feature more muted colors that blend into mountain forests. However, a number of factors in the past few years seemed to have hit critical mass for the endangered Akepa.
[Read More]

Dawn Chorus: Can bird song identify environmental health?
The alarm clock just blared and you bury your head under the pillow. But not everyone goes back to sleep -- early risers are greeted by the dawn chorus. They enjoy the first birdsongs of morning and most dont wonder about its ecological significance. But former STAR fellow Karl S. Berg did wonder and his research has produced significant results of use for environmental monitoring.
[Read More]

Multimedia
The Learning Barge on the James River UVA Students Making the Learning Barge a Reality
UVA students are constructing a floating education center to teach students and the public about the impacts of water pollution on the James River (and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay), the importance of wetlands, and the importance of sustainable technologies.
[View Learning Barge Video from Newsplex.com ]


Science Works Podcast: Science Works Podcast: EPA's Sustainable Design Competition Winners


Science Works Podcast: Science Works Podcast: EPA's Sustainable Design Competition Winners
Listen to the podcasts in our Science Works series, and meet the 6 winning teams from this years P3 student design competition. P3 stands for people, prosperity and the planet, and students from any U.S. college or university can participate.
[Listen Now - University of Arizona | Read Transcript]
[Listen Now - Columbia University | Read Transcript]
[Listen Now - Drexel University | Read Transcript]
[Listen Now - Massachusetts Institute of Technology | Read Transcript]
[Listen Now - University of Tennessee - Knoxville | Read Transcript]
[Listen Now - University of South Florida | Read Transcript]


Science Works Podcast: EPA Sponsors Student Sustainable Design Competition
Listen to the fourth podcast in our Science Works series, and learn how every year, EPA sponsors the P3 student design competition. P3 stands for People, Prosperity and the Planet, and students from any U.S. college or university can participate.
[Listen Now | Read Transcript]


EPA's Administrator, Lisa Jackson Video Lisa Jackson Tasks the Next Generation of Scientists and Engineers to Seize the Moment to Develop a Green Economy
EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson addressed young researchers at the National Sustainable Design Expo on the Washington DC Mall with a rousing speech requesting them to seize the moment to solve the troubled economy and the environment by using their ingenuity to achieve a green economy promoting energy security, independent of fossil fuels.
[View Video]


Science Works Podcast: EPA Funds Development of Laser-Based Carbon Dioxide Sensor
Listen to the third podcast in our Science Works series, and learn how a small business called Bridger Photonics is developing a handheld sensor for the remote detection of carbon dioxide.
[Listen Now | Read Transcript]


Science Works Podcast: Small Business Grows Green Alternative to Styrofoam
Listen to the second podcast in our Science Works series, and learn how a small business called Ecovative Design is developing an environmentally-friendly foam that could replace polystyrene in packaging and construction materials.
[Listen Now (English) | Read Transcript (English) | Escuchar Ahora (español) | Leer Transcripción (español) | Read More]


Science Works Podcast:
The EPA Small Business Innovation Research program provides funding to small businesses to develop new environmental technologies.
[Listen Now (English) | Read Transcript (English) | Escuchar Ahora (español) | Leer Transcripción (español)]


EPA Awards $500,000 to Biomedical Institute for Air Quality Research (Audio)
The Environmental Protection Agency has awarded $500,000 to the Lovelace Biomedical and Environmental Research Institute of Albuquerque, New Mexico, to develop environmental health indicators of cardiovascular disease caused by air pollution. Exposures to particulate matter, ozone, and diesel exhaust have been identified as a possible cause for cardiovascular disease in humans, but no investigation confirms that pollutants act through known markers of atherosclerosis (e.g., C-reactive protein, tumor necrosis factor).
Listen Now]

People In The News
EPA STAR Researcher Shanna Swan awarded EHP's 2009 Paper of the Year
A paper published by Star Researcher Shanna Swan was awarded 2009 paper of the year by EHP. The 2005 paper: Decrease in Anogenital Distance among Male Infants with Prenatal Phthalate Exposure" was selected because of its high impact in both the research and legislative realms since its publication in 2005. This paper was the first to demonstrate an association between pregnant womens exposure to phthalates and adverse effects on genital development in their male children.
[Read More | Listen to EHP "Researcher Perspective" Podcast with host Ernie Hood | Read Transcript]


The Contributions of China to Global Air Pollution
STAR Fellow Julie Layshock is working toward answering questions raised about long-distance air pollution and how China might contribute to the pollution in the United States.
[Read More]


STAR Fellow Research Delivers Explosive Results
Boom! TNT (2,4,6-trinitrotoluene, C6H2(NO2)3CH3 ) is a chemical everyone associates with explosives. Because of its relative stability and low risk of accidental detonation, it has been used in military munitions and quarrying and mining activities for many years. TNT can also be used in wet environments, as it neither absorbs nor dissolves in water. Because of its military use, TNT and its by-products have been widely detected in the soils and sediments of military installations. This makes TNT an environmental contaminant of concern, especially considering its classification as a possible human carcinogen.
Read More]

Grant Applications Sought
7th Annual P3 Awards: A National Student Design Competition for Sustainability Focusing on People, Prosperity and the Planet
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as part of the P3 Award Program, is seeking applications proposing to research, develop, and design solutions to real world challenges involving the overall sustainability of human society.
[Read More]


Approaches to Assessing Potential Food Allergy from Genetically Engineered Plants
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as part of its Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program, is issuing this request for applications (RFA) for applied research on innovative or improved methods to predict whether or not a pesticide protein is a food allergen.
[Read More]


Announcement of Intent to Issue an RFA on Fate and Transport of Engineered Nanomaterials in Coordination with the EC
The EPA, NSF, USDA and NIOSH will issue a solicitation entitled "Increasing Scientific Data on the Fate, Transport and Behavior of Engineered Nanomaterials in Selected Environmental and Biological Matrices".
[Read More]


Fall 2009 STAR Fellowships For Graduate Environmental Study
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as part of its Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program, is offering Graduate Fellowships for master's and doctoral level students in environmentally related fields of study.
[Read More]


Clean Air Research Centers
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as part of its Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program, is seeking applications for Clean Air Research Centers. EPA is interested in supporting research on the health effects of exposure to particulate matter (PM), ozone, and other air pollutants, both singly and in multipollutant atmospheres.
[Read More]


Advancing Public Health Protection through Water Infrastructure Sustainability
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as part of its Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program, is seeking new and innovative research applications that link opportunities to advance public health protection with improvements in the condition and function of the water infrastructure.
[Read More]


Exploring Linkages Between Health Outcomes and Environmental Hazards, Exposures, and Interventions for Public Health Tracking and Risk Management
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as part of its Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program, is seeking applications to develop new or improved environmental public health indicators (EPHIs) to build linkages between environmental hazards, human exposures, and public health outcomes.
[Read More]


Environmental Behavior, Bioavailability and Effects of Manufactured Nanomaterials: a Joint Research Solicitation - US EPA and UK ENI
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, as part of its Science to Achieve Results program, in conjunction with the UK Environmental Nanoscience Initiative, is seeking joint applications from US and UK partners.
[Read More]

New Grants to Measure Progress of Environmental Programs in Protecting Human Health
(Washington, D.C. March 16, 2009) EPA has awarded 10 grants totaling $5 million to develop a new generation of markers or indicators.
[Read More]


EPA's SBIR Phase 1 Solicitation now open.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) invites small business firms to submit research proposals under this Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Solicitation.
[Read More]


Novel Approaches to Improving Air Pollution Emissions Information
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of Research and Development (ORD), National Center for Environmental Research (NCER), in cooperation with the EPA Clean Air Research Program, announces an extramural funding competition supporting research into the development and improvement of air pollution emission inventories.
[Read More]

USDA and EPA Announce $4.5 Million Available for Research on Ecosystem Services provided by Agricultural Lands
The USDA and USEPA are seeking applications proposing research on the ecosystem services provided by agricultural lands.
[Read More]

Understanding the Role of Nonchemical Stressors and Developing Analytic Methods for Cumulative Risk Assessments
$8 Million EPA STAR research competition opens on role of non-chemical stressors and analytic methods for cumulative risk assessments. RFA calls for research on techniques to analyze disparate data types, and evaluate the combined effects of nonchemical and chemical stressors on communities.
[Read More]


Children outside jumping into the air. Two Funding Opportunities Now Open under EPA and NIEHS Joint Children's Environmental Health Centers Program
NIEHS and EPA have jointly issued two funding opportunities to support the next phase of the Childrens Environmental Health Research Centers (CEHCs) program.
[Read More]


Novel Approaches to Improving Air Pollution Emissions Information
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as part of its Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program, is seeking applications proposing research to improve air pollution emissions information.
[Read More]


Grants Awarded
EPA and Mount Sinai Investigate Food Allergy Triggers
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today announced a $466,125 research grant to the Mount Sinai School of Medicine to investigate the mechanisms that make food allergies occur and pinpoint what triggers them.
[Read More]


EPA Awards $3.5 Million in Grants for Particulate Matter Research
(Washington, D.C. April 3, 2009) EPA awarded four grants to universities to research the relationship between the chemical composition of particulate matter (PM) and health effects.
[Read More]


Five Mass. Companies Get Contracts for Small Business Innovation Research
(Boston, Mass. March 26, 2009) Five small businesses in eastern Massachusetts have received a total of $1.125 million from EPA to commercialize innovative technologies that address pressing environmental problems.
[Read More]


Grants to Develop Green Technology Go to 3 New England Companies
Three New England-based companies will share nearly $210,000 from EPA for the research and development of green technology.
[Read More]


Texas company awarded $70,000 for enzyme bioremediation research
Austin-based Agave BioSystems, Inc. has been awarded $70,000 in funding from the Environmental Protection Agencys Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program to develop a new enzyme engineering system used to remediate contaminated properties.
[Read More]


Small Businesses Receive Contracts for Green Technology
(Washington, D.C. Feb. 20, 2009) - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency awarded $1.6 million in contracts to 23 small companies to assist their efforts to bring promising new green technologies to market. This award is part of EPAs Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, which helps small business throughout America develop technologies that are more protective of our air and water quality and promote alternative sources of energy.
[Read More]


University of Iowa Receives $899,401 Research Grant to Develop Better Air Quality Estimates for U.S. Cities
(Kansas City, Kan., Feb. 17, 2009) - EPA's National Center for Environmental Research has awarded a $899,401 grant to the University of Iowa for a research project that will develop techniques to identify the most harmful fractions and sources of air particulate matter in major U.S. cities, including Chicago.
[Read More]


University of Nebraska-Lincoln Receives $372,982 Grant to Improve Toxicity Testing of Genetically-Engineered Foods
(Kansas City, Kan., Feb. 17, 2009) - EPA's National Center for Environmental Research has awarded a $372,982 grant to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln for a research project designed to improve the testing of genetically-engineered foods.
[Read More]


Small Business in Gainesville, Fl., Wins Aircraft Cabin Air Purification Research Contract
EPA has awarded a $69,795 Phase I contract for aircraft cabin air purification to Sol-gel Solutions, LLC (Sol-gel), in Gainesville, Fl., through its Small Business Innovation Research program.
[Read More]


Constellation Technology Corporation in Largo, FL wins EPA research contract
Constellation Technology Corporation in Largo, Fla. has been awarded $70,000 from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program to develop an integrated recovery and detection system for online water supply monitoring.
[Read More]


The Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute is a private biomedical research organization dedicated to improving public health through research on the prevention, treatment, and cure of respiratory disease.EPA Awards $500,000 to Biomedical Institute for Air Quality Research
The Environmental Protection Agency has awarded $500,000 to the Lovelace Biomedical and Environmental Research Institute of Albuquerque, New Mexico, to develop environmental health indicators (specific markers for acute exposure in humans) of cardiovascular disease caused by air pollution.
[Read More]


Past Events

The Mid-Atlantic SBIR/STTR Conference - November 30, 2009 - December 2, 2009

Hormones in the Environment Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry Annual Meeting - November 20, 2009

11th Biennial Hawaii SBIR & STTR Conference - November 16-20, 2009

The Peach State Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation Annual Fall Symposium and Research Conference - November 12-14, 2009

Interagency Nanotechnology Implications Grantees Workshop EPA, NSF, NIH/NIEHS, NIOSH and DOE - November 9 10, 2009

Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS) - November 4 - 7, 2009

2009 National Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Technology Transfer Program Conference - November 2 - 5, 2009

Computational Toxicology Centers - STAR Progress Review Workshop - October 01, 2009

2009 EPA/AAAS Graduate Fellowship Program Expo - September 21 - 22, 2009

4th Annual International Conference on Nanotechnology - Occupational and Environmental Health - August 26 - 29, 2009

Advancing the Science & Practice of Cumulative Risk Assessment: Alignment of ORD Research & Agency Needs - July 28 - 30, 2009

Early Indicators of Environmentally Induced Disease (Webinar) - July 14 - 15, 2009

CNS Webinar: Sustainable Lake Management in Maine's Changing Landscape - July 1, 2009

Innovative Approaches to Particulate Matter Health, Composition, and Source Questions Grants Kick-Off Meeting - June 10, 2009

2009 International Conference on the Environmental Implications and Applications of Nanotechnology - June 9 - 11, 2009

The Plight of Ecosystems in a Changing Climate: Impacts on Services, Interactions and Responses Workshop - May 27 - 28, 2009

The 2009 U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Workshop on Innovative Approaches for Detecting Microorganisms and Cyanotoxins in Water - May 20 - 21, 2009

Market Mechanisms and Incentives: Applications to Environmental Policy - April 29, 2009

EPA-CDC Workshop On State-of-the-Science for the Determination and Application of Dose-response Relationships in Microbial Risk Assessment - April 21 - 23, 2009

Fifth Annual National Sustainable Design Expo - April 18 - 20, 2009

1st Annual Indiana SBIR/STTR Conference - April 14 - 15, 2009

Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I Solicitation Workshop - April 8, 2009

Columbia Center for Children's Environmental Health Conference -- Translating Science to Policy: Protecting Children's Environmental Health - March 30, 2009

237th ACS National Meeting Symposium on Nanotechnology and the Environment: Emphasis on Green Nanotechnology - March 22 - 26 2009

SBIR Workshop: Ames, Iowa in collaboration with USDA and hosted by states of Iowa and Nebraska - March 26, 2009

2009 SBIR/STTR Expo - March 18, 2009

Remediation Technology Summit (REMTEC) 2009: The Future of Remediation Technology - March 5 - 9, 2009

U.S. EPA SBIR Phase I Kick-Off Meeting - February 19 - 20, 2009

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