Environmental and Occupational Health

Some flame retardants may affect endocrine system

Many FRs no longer produced in U.S.
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By determining the three-dimensional structure of proteins at the atomic level, researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have discovered how some commonly used flame retardants, called brominated flame retardants (BFRs), can mimic estrogen hormones and possibly disrupt the body’s endocrine system.


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Combination of long hours, demanding jobs increases depression risk

Making changes reduces likelihood
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Employees who work long hours with high job demands are more likely to develop depression, suggests a study in the August Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, official publication of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM).
 


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ISHN Editor featured in AIHA Thought Leaders Project

“No news is good news” in EHS
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ISHN Chief Editor Dave Johnson is the subject of a Thought Leaders Project video produced by the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA). The project highlights the contributions of industrial hygienists – and those who report on them – and captures the stories of influential AIHA members.


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Oil and gas extraction workers exposed to respirable crystalline silica

Research examines work crew exposures to crystalline silica during hydraulic fracturing
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A recent report published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (JOEH) found respirable crystalline silica, a human lung carcinogen, to be an occupational exposure hazard for oil and gas extraction workers. The study is the first systematic investigation of worker exposure to crystalline silica during directional drilling and hydraulic fracturing, a process used to stimulate well production in the oil and gas industry.


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Industrial bird problems

By Dr. Rob Fergus
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Industrial facilities often attract birds, some of which may cause problems for site operation and management. Bird problems at industrial sites include:Impediment to operations—birds and their nests or droppings may interfere with plant operations. Property damage—birds and their droppings are messy and can cause damage to structures and equipment.


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Radiation exposures creates thyroid cancer risk for 2,000 Fukushima workers

By Dave Johnson
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Around 2,000 people who have worked at Japan's wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant face a heightened risk of thyroid cancer, its operator in recent news reports.


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Total Worker Health concept goes global

NIOSH: “We are not alone” in our commitment
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The Total Worker Health™ (TWH) strategy developed by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) is a concept being embraced in many countries, as NIOSH Director Dr. John Howard found at a recent conference.


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Respiratory protection for workers handling engineered nanoparticles

By Dennis Viscusi and Ziqing Zhuang Ph.D.
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Each day millions of workers in the United States use National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) certified respirators to reduce exposure to harmful gases, vapors, and particulate hazards. NIOSH has certification, quality assurance, and auditing procedures in place (42 CFR Part 84) that assure purchasers and users that the products they are buying/using have been tested and manufactured to strict standards.


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Bill would force MSHA to act on dust limits

Black lung disease rates going in the wrong direction
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Frustrated by rulemaking foot-dragging on the part of the Obama administration, West Virginia Senator Jay Rockefeller has introduced a bill that would impose a deadline on the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) for finalizing a proposal to reduce respirable dust limits in mines.


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Workers dying as safety rules stall

By Mike Hall
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AFL-CIO Health and Safety Director Peg Seminario told a U.S. Senate committee on Thursday that the current system for developing and issuing worker and workplace safety rules is: A broken and dysfunctional system, which is failing to protect workers and costing workers’ lives.


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A gallery of photos from the sprawling Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, where ASSE’s annual professional development conference was held June 8-11. All photos courtesy of the American Society of Safety Engineers.

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