Environmental health

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The environment we live in can dramatically affect our health and well-being. Monitoring and responding to problems that arise in the environment is essential to ensuring the safety and health of our environment, as well as ourselves and our communities. We are exploring the potential impacts COVID-19 response measures may have had on natural and built environments, including air, water, soil and infrastructure.

We have divided the reports that concern environmental health by:

With fewer people moving and commuting, due to non-essential travel warnings and more people working from home, we believe there will be benefits to the natural environment, such as less air pollution . On the flip side, we also know that there has been an increase in single-use products, increased use of packaging (more take-out food services and online shopping), as well as possible increases in exhibits. potentially dangerous cleaning and disinfection products.

COVID-19 response measures have reduced the amount of travel and travel for the general population, as well as resulted in decreased production and activity in some industries, which may improve the pollution level of the air and carbon emissions. Air pollution is associated with short and long term health effects (eg, asthma).

Coming report

There has been widespread use of chemicals and non-recyclable, non-compostable and disposable materials to minimize potential exposures and transmission of COVID-19 (eg, gloves, masks, bags). Single-use plastics pose problems for human health and the environment.

Coming report

The use of chemicals and single-use items can pollute the oceans, but reducing industrial shipping traffic can improve water quality. Assessment of drinking water quality may be delayed in small water supply systems.

Coming report

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Man-made environments include the designs and infrastructure of urban, suburban and rural communities. These built environments can contribute to the health and well-being of the population, including by ensuring the safety of roads and other infrastructure, as well as by facilitating access to green spaces. We examine how response measures to the COVID-19 pandemic have created less traffic on the roads and increased use of community green spaces, which has both potential advantages and disadvantages for infrastructure.

The federal and provincial governments are responding to the impact of the pandemic on communities in British Columbia by funding infrastructure maintenance and improvement projects. This funding will target local and indigenous government buildings, health and education infrastructure, transportation networks, disaster mitigation and adaptation infrastructure, and other infrastructure projects that will support resilience. , safety and sustainability in communities.

Coming report

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