REHIS News

CLIMATE CHANGE IS A THREAT TO ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH

Climate change is a threat to environmental health

On the 1 June, Donald Trump confirmed that he would withdraw the US from the Paris Agreement. The aim of this climate change pact is to strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change by keeping a global temperature rise this century well below 2oC above pre-industrial levels. Additionally, the agreement aims to strengthen the ability of countries to deal with the impacts of climate change.

EU GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS FROM TRANSPORT INCREASE FOR THE SECOND YEAR IN A ROW

Total European Union greenhouse gas emissions increased by 0.5 % in 2015, according to new European Environment Agency (EEA) data. Transport was a key reason for that increase: better fuel efficiency in that sector was not enough to counter the effects of an increasing demand for transport.

EUROPEAN CONFERENCE ON ENVIRONMENT AND HEALTH

The 6th Ministerial Conference on Environment and Health is taking place this week in Ostrava, Czechia.

These series of ministerial conferences are held every five years and are coordinated by WHO/Europe. The conferences are unique, bringing together different sectors to shape European policies and actions on environment and health.

The most recent conference took place in Parma, Italy, in 2010, this resulted Parma Declaration. Governments of the 53 European Member States set clear targets to reduce the adverse health impact of environmental threats in the next decade.

MOVING TOWARDS BETTER GLOBAL FOODBORNE DISEASE SURVEILLANCE

Almost 1 in 10 people worldwide fall ill every year after eating contaminated food which commonly causes bacterial diarrhoea, resulting in 230 000 deaths each year.

In an article published in Eurosurveillance, PulseNet International advocates for public health institutes and laboratories around the world to move together towards the use of whole genome sequencing (WGS) to improve detection of and response to foodborne illnesses and outbreaks. This will save lives and money due to the superior ability of WGS to link human cases with contaminated food sources.

NATIONAL CLEAN AIR DAY

National Clean Air Day Today, 15 June, marks the UK’s first ever National Clean Air Day which is intended to bring focus to what we can do about air pollution- to both protect our health and reduce air pollution.

What is National Clean Air Day?

Air pollution is real and harms the health of millions. Unlike other risks to our health, lots of people don’t know what causes air pollution, what effects it has on our bodies or how to reduce our exposure to it.

LET’S GET COOKING CLUBS FOR SCHOOL STUDENTS

School students are completing their REHIS Elementary Food Hygiene qualification as part of their two day “Let’s Get Cooking” course.

Let’s Get Cooking in Scotland with funding from Big Lottery’s Young Start Fund the Children’s Food Trust are working in partnership with 17 secondary schools across five local authorities. There are now Let’s Get Cooking Clubs in Glasgow, Edinburgh, North Lanarkshire, East Dunbartonshire and West Dunbartonshire.

SCOTLAND’S BATHING WATER SEASON BEGINS

Scotland’s new bathing water season began on 1 June 2017 with the good news that 87% of Scotland’s bathing waters have achieved strict European water quality standards.

The final classifications, now issued by the EU, show that out of the 84 officially designated bathing waters in Scotland in 2016:

• 26 have been rated as ‘excellent’ (up from 17 previous season)

• 36 are classed as ‘good’

• 11 have achieved the ‘sufficient’ standard

• 11 have been rated as ‘poor’ (down from 17 previous season)

COULD WASHING YOUR HANDS IN COLD WATER BE AS EFFECTIVE AS HOT WATER?

A study from US researchers claim that using unheated water to wash your hands is as effective at killing bacteria as using hot water.

The small study of 20 people found using water at 15oC left hands as clean as water heated to 38oC.

The study was carried out by researchers at the Rutgers University-New Brunswick in New Jersey, and the results were published in the Journal of Food Protection.

The study examined the effect of various factors, such as soap volume, water temperature, lather time, and the hand washing efficacy of the soap as formulated on the product.

HONORARY VICE-PRESIDENT VISITS THE REHIS OFFICE

Dr Jim Smith, one of the Institute’s Honorary Vice-Presidents, visited the Institute’s offices in Edinburgh on 18 May this year at the start of a vocational trip around Europe.

Jim is a past President of Environmental Health Australia, an independent public health planning consultant, a public health policy adviser to local government in Australia and holds a number of academic appointments including that of Adjunct Associate Professor at La Trobe University and at Flinders University.

HEALTHY YOU HEALTHY ME - NEW JOINT AWARD

REHIS is delighted to announce the signing of a new joint award between the Institute and TEENS+ called Healthy You, Healthy Me.

TEENS+ (Transitional Educational, Extra Needs Support) is a full-time further education facility for young, post-school adults with severe and complex learning difficulties.

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