Contaminants and Hazards


Identifying hazards posed by infectious diseases, chemicals, radiation, and noise, in homes and personal service establishments.

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A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Childhood Leukemia and Parental Occupational Pesticide Exposure

Many Canadian municipalities or provinces have banned or restricted cosmetic pesticide use and other jurisdictions are considering similar bans or facing continuous public pressure for such action.…
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Adverse effects after medical, commercial, or self-administered colon cleansing procedures

Primary inquiry: What information is available regarding the environmental health-related risks of colonics in the academic literature, and how can environmental health practitioners help reduce…
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An Evaluation of Interventions Designed to Reduce Ultraviolet Radiation Exposure

Ultraviolet radiation from sunlight is the main risk factor for the development of skin cancer. This risk factor can be greatly reduced by following responsible sun protection measures and avoiding…
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Carbon Dioxide in Indoor Air

A Public Health Inspector calls about an issue flagged at an older elementary school.  As part of a teacher complaint process, the provincial health and safety agency has been conducting a workplace…
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Cellular/Mobile Phone Use and Intracranial Tumours

Cell phone use is increasingly prevalent in Canada. Public concerns of a potential associated risk with intracranial tumours have been raised. Further, recent media attention has focused on disparate…
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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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Chlorination Disinfection By-Products in Drinking Water

The challenge of judging and managing public health risks “caused by” chlorination disinfection by-products (DBPs) in drinking water is likely the most complex issue faced by the drinking water…
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Church/Community Suppers: What is the Evidence for Risk of Food-borne Illness?

We estimate that 3% to 16% of food-borne outbreaks investigated by public health agencies are associated with community events including church suppers, fairs, potlucks, picnics, etc. However, there…
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Clandestine Amphetamine-Derived Drug Laboratories: Remediation Guidelines for Residential Settings - revised

Clandestine labs produce illegal substances using a variety of chemicals and manufacturing processes. Clandestine labs can be housed in a variety of structures, including residential and non-…
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Cleaning, disinfection, and sterilization at PSEs - revised*

Health concerns regarding the transmission of infections at personal service establishments (PSEs) are often mitigated by public health inspectors (environmental health officers). Inspection of PSEs…
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Cleanup Instructions for Small Mercury Spills - revised

Exposure to the small amount of mercury found in common household devices, such as fever thermometers, thermostats, or fluorescent light bulbs, is not likely to cause serious health problems. Humans …
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Comparison of the prevalence of bacterial enteropathogens, potentially zoonotic bacteria and bacterial resistance to antimicrobials in organic and conventional poultry, swine and beef production

The prevalences of zoonotic and potentially zoonotic bacteria or bacteria resistant to antimicrobials in organic and conventional poultry, swine and beef production were compared using systematic…
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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 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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Cyanobacteria in Freshwater

What are cyanobacteria? Are cyanoblooms preventable? Who is at risk and how does exposure occur? Is there testing for cyanotoxins?This NCCEH document provides a brief outline of these key questions…
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Disinfectants and Sanitizers for Use on Food Contact Surfaces - revised

Health Canada has approved the sale of disinfectants for food premises which contain chlorine compounds (e.g., bleach), peroxide and peroxyacid mixtures, carboxylic acids, quaternary ammonium…
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Does Eating Organic Food Reduce Pesticide Exposures and Health Risks?

Diet is an important source of pesticide exposure, particularly for children, but data are lacking on the amount of pesticides consumed in the diet relative to exposures from other sources. Available…
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