Built Environment


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

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An introduction to SARS-CoV-2

[Last Updated Nov 15, 2020] An introduction to SARS-CoV-2  The emergence of a novel coronavirus in late 2019, identified as SARS-CoV-2, has resulted in a global pandemic accompanied by an…
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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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Best Safety and Hygiene Practices for Public Workspaces in the COVID-19 Environment

The National Academies’ Federal Facilities Council invites you to join us for a webinar on Tuesday, June 23 from 2-3pm ET on the challenges of operating workplaces with a public interaction component…
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Beyond Zoonosis: The Mental Health Impacts of Rat Exposure of Inner-City Residents

This work was one of the 2018 Ron de Burger Student Award winners. Author: Raymond Lam, University of British Columbia – Master of Science in Occupational and Environmental HygieneIntroductionRats…
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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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Cemetery Setback Distances to Prevent Surface Water Contamination

Primary inquiry: In Canada, as in many other countries, cemeteries are required to be setback a certain distance from waterbodies to protect drinking water sources from contaminated liquids that can…
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Connecting for active communities during COVID-19 and beyond

From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, B.C. residents have been encouraged to stay as active as possible while remaining physically distant. What can we learn from others around the province at…
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COVID-19 and outdoor safety: Considerations for use of outdoor recreational spaces

[NOTE:a printer friendly version of this document is attached at the bottom] Introduction Outdoor recreational spaces make important contributions to social well-being as well as physical and…
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COVID-19 in indoor environments — Air and surface disinfection measures

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to the closure of workplaces, public facilities, retail and commercial spaces, entertainment venues, and other indoor spaces where groups of people congregate. As cities…
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COVID-19 Precautions for Multi-unit Residential Buildings

The transmission of COVID-19, which occurs primarily through close contact with an infected person, has made it necessary for large proportions of the world’s population to self-isolate in their…
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COVID-19 Precautions for Multi-unit Residential Buildings

Multi-unit residential buildings bring together tens to hundreds of people within the same building envelope and in contact with many of the same surfaces. Although we know that COVID-19 is primarily…
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Crematoria and Air Quality Fact Sheet

[NOTE: A printer friendly version is attached at the bottom of this document] In Canada, preference for cremation is increasing. The Cremation Association of North America (CANA) estimates that…
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Crematoria emissions and air quality impacts

Primary inquiry A municipality received an application from a funeral home to install a cremator within their facility. Objections were received from nearby residents who were concerned about…
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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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Environmental public health guidance for encampments during the COVID-19 pandemic

To prevent the transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, public health guidance promotes physical distancing, staying home when ill, good hand hygiene and environmental…
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Forest Residues to Energy: Is this a pathway towards healthier communities?

Forest residues are non-merchantable woody biomass found in forests and wood waste from logging practices and industrial operations, such as sawmills. Forest residues are a convenient fuel for open-…
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Health Effects of Large LED Screens on Local Residents

In 2011, three high-definition outdoor LED video billboards were erected around a city sports stadium. The residents of the surrounding community are exposed to the lighted images of these screens…
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