Built Environment


Recognizing the health impacts of the natural and human-made surroundings in which we live, work, and play.

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Announcing the new NCCEH Healthy Built Environment Online Discussion Forum

In recent years, research evidence on the influence of healthy built environments (HBE) on human physical, mental, and social health has increased drastically. As a result, public health agencies and…
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Artificial Turf and Crumb Rubber

Modern artificial turf is used indoors and outdoors in a wide variety of settings, including multipurpose recreational and professional sports fields, playgrounds, residential areas, and public…
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Bed Bugs

Bed bugs (Cimex lectularius) are small, elusive, and resilient insects that live by feeding on the blood of mammals, including humans. Bed bug infestations have become prominent worldwide, generating…
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Bike Sharing During COVID-19

Bicycle-sharing services (bike shares) allow individuals to use bicycles on membership or fee-per-trip bases and can be a convenient, inexpensive alternative to owning a bicycle. These services may…
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Building Shutdown and Re-opening during the COVID-19 Pandemic

During the extended “new normal” of the COVID-19 pandemic, it may be necessary to periodically close public buildings and facilities, followed by re-opening when safe again. Periods of low or no…
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Environmental Health Resources for the COVID-19 Pandemic

The transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, occurs primarily via direct contact with or respiratory droplets from an infected person. However, there is evidence to suggest that…
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Food Environments

The foods that people choose to consume are influenced by the availability, affordability, and accessibility of foods in the environments in which they live, work, and play. Defined by the built and…
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From ship to shore: Sightings of Asian Giant Hornets in Canada’s west coast

Recent sightings of the Giant Asian Hornet- dubbed the murder hornet by some sources- have left many wondering whether these enormous, aggressive insects are a new insect of concern.   Their usual…
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Green space can reduce ADHD symptoms in children

In Canada, almost 4 out of 5 of us live in medium or large cities. Surrounded by buildings, concrete, traffic, noise, and pollution all day every day takes a toll on our physical and mental health,…
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Healthy Built Environment

BackgroundAspects of the built environment, including man-made and natural features, impact human health directly and indirectly through air quality, traffic injuries, and toxic substances. These…
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Healthy Housing Environments: Public Health, Cooperative and Co-housing 101

Social isolation is an increasingly important issue in Canada which has been associated with negative health outcomes such as depression, anxiety, and cognitive decline among those with dementia. …
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Incorporating Health in Urban Planning: Quebec City Case Study

For over 50 years the importance of protecting health has been recognized in many areas of public policy. Concepts and approaches for actually including heath considerations in assessment processes,…
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Legionella

Legionella is an opportunistic premise plumbing pathogen (OPPP) that can cause illnesses including Pontiac fever and Legionnaires’ disease, a severe pneumonia named after an outbreak that resulted in…
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Make our communities healthier with better air quality during and post-pandemic: CANUE

The abrupt change in our lives brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic is and will continue to affect us all deeply.  There are obvious changes of limited movement and social interaction with many…
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Massive Carbon Monoxide Exposure Event in a Primary School

On January 14, 2019, a massive carbon monoxide exposure event occurred in a Montreal-area primary school. The event appears to have been caused by a faulty heating system and there are still…
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Regrettable Replacements: The Case of Chemical Flame Retardants

In the 1970s, fire regulations began requiring the addition of chemical flame retardants (CFRs) to a variety of consumer products. Now, we find these compounds in products as diverse as cell phones,…
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Safety Considerations for Cycling During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Over the past few months, there have been numerous reports of increasing numbers of people riding bicycles in many Canadian cities. There are also expectations that during the warmer months, cycling…
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Summer is coming: Wildfire Smoke + COVID-19

It is meant as an ominous threat when characters in the popular Game of Thrones series utter “winter is coming”, and I feel the same way about the summer of 2020. The catastrophic wildfire seasons of…
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The invasive European fire ant: Are they more than picnic pests?

Why do European fire ants matter for Canadians? The European fire ant is an emerging problem insect across Canada. Formally named Myrmica rubra, the European or ruby fire ant is a very small,…
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When hand washing is not handy: Cautions for hand sanitizer use

Washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds is the most effective strategy for removing the COVID-19 virus from hands. In some situations, hand sanitizers can be used as a substitute if…
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