The toxic effects of plastics pollution on human health
—Belinda McFadgen, for OEC
In early March of 2019, a Cuvier’s beaked whale washed up dead in the Philippines. The whale had died of gastric shock, brought on by the 88 lbs. of plastic bags found in its stomach.
The sheer volume of plastic waste and its brutal impact on marine wildlife is shocking. But just as disturbing is the emerging story of how the toxicity of plastic pollution is affecting human health and the health of the planet as a whole.
A growing understanding of toxic effects
More than twenty years ago, a health hazard from widespread plastic use made headlines. In 1993, ...
“Everything we buy and use has impacts on the environment. By using cutting-edge science, such as life-cycle analysis and green chemistry, we can identify where the biggest impacts are and discover and develop much safer alternatives.”
In anticipation of this week's March for Science - we wanted to share with you a few scientists who we think are doing great things right here in Oregon.
I’m a sucker for science. I am inclined to believe it. So when politics and science get whipped into a froth and poured over a debate about protecting health and the environment, I need a refresher on what science can and cannot do.
"Do you know what chemicals you're exposed to on a daily basis? Pollutants we encounter every day come from any number of sources – cars, factories, shampoos, lotions, carpets and more. Some chemicals are benign but others could be hazardous to your health..." So begins an article about the toxics around us.
This week, KGW Investigates examines a new bracelet that can measure the toxics that we're exposed to in our daily life. Reporter Keely Chalmers and OEC Emerging Leaders Board Member Bethany Thomas are wearing these revolutionary bracelets developed by OSU to examine what chemicals they are exposed to in their everyday life.
Inspired Innovation: Expanding Oregon’s Advantage in Sustainable Chemistry and Materials
Research indicates that the global market for chemicals and materials designed and
manufactured using sustainable chemistry, also known as green chemistry, will continue to grow.
It’s estimated that the market will expand from about $3 billion in 2011, to almost $100 billion by
2020.A Oregon is poised to become a national leader in the development and commercialization
of the next generation of affordable, high performance chemicals and materials.
Materials are at the heart of the global economy. The availability and performance of chemicals and ...
If we desire a more sustainable society, one in which our goods and services are designed to regenerate life rather than jeopardize it, we must design products to be safer from the start by eliminating toxic chemicals through the use of green chemistry.
Green chemistry is the application of 12 principles in the design, manufacture and use of chemicals and chemical products, as defined by Paul Anastas and John Warner. The principles are focused on reducing hazards, increasing efficiency and transitioning to renewable feedstocks.
Through the application of these principles, products become safer for employees and customers alike, helping ...
Oregon Environmental Council facilitates the Healthy Purchasing Coalition, a group of governments, universities, ports, businesses, and nonprofits engaged in leading edge public procurement policy. This coalition, which includes the City of Portland, Metro, Multnomah County, City of Hillsboro, Port of Portland, City of Eugene, City of Corvallis, Portland State University, Portland Community College, San Diego County, District of Saanich, British Columbia, and the University of British Columbia, is working together to integrate human health, chemical hazard, and safer alternatives into institutional purchasing decisions.
Why? Changing the way ...
Tom Schneider is a chemist with insight about a major challenge for buildings in the northwest: Keeping moisture out. In addition to being a chemist, Tom is also the co-owner of Clackamas-based Building Envelope Innovations, LLC. He’s responsible for the development and commercialization of a product called “Fast Flash” that’s unique in the way it helps protect buildings from moisture.
The problem with moisture is that once it gets inside a building’s walls, it doesn’t readily evaporate. Since it can’t escape, the moisture rots the wood and other materials. Repairing this type of damage to buildings is very expensive.
About a ...