newsFrom the budget drama on Capitol Hill to the Fukushima nuclear disaster, the year 2011 did not lack for news about occupational and environmental health and safety. Through it all, AIHA's weekly E-ssential Connections newsletter kept its readers abreast of the most significant developments in industrial hygiene and OEHS.

Below, E-ssential Connections counts down the top ten OEHS stories of 2011. Articles are ranked according to the number of clicks they received from readers, and the dates indicate when they were published in E-ssential Connections.

10 Dec. 21: Tox21 Chemical Screening Program Underway
Tox21 is a joint effort by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to test 10,000 compounds for possible toxicity.

9 Sept. 28: New Guidance Targets Nail Gun Safety
A guidance document jointly published by OSHA and NIOSH aims to prevent workplace nail gun injuries.

8 Nov. 2: CSB Report: Oil and Gas Production Sites Hazardous to Public
A report from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) on three explosions that occurred at oil and gas production facilities in Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas identified regulatory gaps at the federal and state levels.

7 Jan. 12: NIOSH Requests Information on Diacetyl Substitutes
NIOSH requested information on 2,3-pentanedione and other alpha-diketones, a class of chemicals used as substitutes for diacetyl.

6 Feb. 9: Technological, Scientific Advances Key to Protecting Workers, Suggests UMass Lowell Report
The University of Massachusetts Lowell’s Center for Sustainable Protection analyzed the successes and failures of occupational health and safety regulations over the span of 40 years.

5 Feb. 16: NIOSH Releases Beryllium Alert
NIOSH provided guidance on how workers can avoid beryllium sensitization, chronic beryllium disease and lung cancer through different training methods, cleaning procedures and medical surveillance.

4 Oct. 26: NIOSH Survey: Professionals Needed to Meet Rising OHS Demand
A NIOSH-commissioned survey predicted that future demand for occupational health and safety services will outpace the number of OHS professionals.

3 May 19: NIOSH Publishes Skin Exposure Data Online
The latest data on skin exposure is available online through the NIOSH skin notation profiles.

2 April 27: NIOSH Addresses Exposure to Fine and Ultrafine Titanium Dioxide
The NIOSH document “Current Intelligence Bulletin 63: Occupational Exposure to Titanium Dioxide” (TiO2) marked the first time NIOSH published two different guidelines for the same chemical based on size and concluded that ultrafine TiO2 is a "potential occupational carcinogen."

1 March 30: NIOSH Releases Bulletin on Asbestos Research Strategy
The NIOSH document “Current Intelligence Bulletin 62: Asbestos Fibers and Other Elongate Mineral Particles: State of the Science and Roadmap for Research” addressed current scientific questions concerning occupational exposure and toxicity issues associated with asbestos fibers and other elongate mineral particles.