The Superfund Research Program at Boston University (BU SRP) is an NIEHS-funded program that studies the effects of exposures to substances commonly encountered in hazardous waste disposal on reproduction and development in humans and wildlife. CHE has partnered since 2011 with their Research Translation Core, and together, our goal is to bring BU’s research on environmental exposures and disease endpoints into the public spotlight through a variety of ways. Learn more about this partnership.
Research to Real Life: How Scientific Research Affects YOU
Boston University Superfund Research Project scientists and researchers are often asked questions by community partners, health professionals, health advocates, agency personnel and the public about what their research means in real life settings and the scientific methods they use to conduct the research.
2019 Webinar Series: Climate Change and Toxic Hazards: Preparing for Before, During, and After the Storm
When storms from climate change flood and devastate communities, the dangers of hazardous waste sites and other sources of chemical pollution may not be foremost in the minds of residents. However, these chemical time bombs can render water undrinkable, expose people to toxic fumes, and send contaminated soils from basements to beaches. We’ve seen the stark images: North Carolina hog farm lagoons breached during hurricane Florence sending rivers of hog waste into waterways, the polluted Gowanus canal flooding New Yorker’s basements during hurricane Sandy, Superfund sites flooded by rains from hurricanes Katrina and Maria.
More than half of the US population lives within three miles of a hazardous waste site or storage area. EPA’s inventory of Superfund sites shows that over 500 Superfund sites are within a 100-year floodplain or are less than six feet above mean sea level (American Society of Civil Engineers). However, more than half the flooding from hurricane Harvey that struck Texas happened outside of any flood zone—including FEMA’s so-called “500-year flood-zone” (The New Republic). Industrial facilities such as chemical production plants also pose risks to workers, residents, and responders when they are flooded, lose power, or catch fire.
This series will explore three time frames of preparedness and mitigation – before, during and after a storm - to help individuals and communities prepare to face climate change calamities and prevent exposures to toxic chemicals in and around their homes and places of work.
First Webinar: Before the Storm
January 24, 2019 at 10am PT / 1pm ET
After 30 years of Superfund site cleanups, where are we? Where does the cleanup waste go? How are communities and businesses changing preparation processes based on lessons learned from prior storms/cleanups like Maria, Harvey, Irma, and Florence?
- Tiffany Skogstrom, MPH, Outreach and Chemical Policy Analyst for the Building Chemical Safety Into Climate Change Resiliency Project at the Massachusetts Office of Technical Assistance
- Jennifer Horney, PhD, MPH, CPH, Professor and Founding Director of the Program in Epidemiology and Core Faculty at the Disaster Research Center at the University of Delaware
Second Webinar: During the Storm
February 14, 2019 at 10am PT / 1pm ET
How can people best protect themselves from toxic exposures in air, water, soil during the storm? How can we best protect sites that have been cleaned up or are in the cleanup process? What forms of prevention are in place to act as barriers during storms and are they sufficient? Are evacuations effective?
- Elena Craft, PhD, senior health scientist at the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF)
- Catherine Kastleman, MPH, Community Engagement Coordinator for the Duke University Superfund Research Program,
- David Coffey, training manager at the Emergency Response, Incident Command, and Emergency Management Department at the New England Consortium, University of Massachusetts, Lowell
Third Webinar: After the Storm
March 28, 2019 at 10am PT / 1pm ET
What’s the best cleanup process and the best way to protect people during that process? How do people deal with home and business contamination? What are the roles of individuals, agencies, businesses, and governments in the process, and what about our aging infrastructure?
- Tom Estabrook, PhD, Project Director of The New England Consortium, an NIEHS-funded worker health and safety training project based at University of Massachusetts Lowell
- Richard Rabin, MS, Volunteer with MassCOSH (Massachusetts Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health) for over 30 years, former Director of the Occupational Lead Poisoning Registry at the Massachusetts Department of Labor
Webinars and Calls from the CHE BU Superfund Research Program Partnership
March 30, 2021
December 8, 2020
March 28, 2019
February 14, 2019
January 24, 2019
May 1, 2018
March 13, 2018
December 4, 2017
May 25, 2017
April 24, 2017
December 20, 2016
July 26, 2016
January 26, 2016
October 20, 2015
June 4, 2015
May 7, 2015
January 8, 2015
October 9, 2014
September 9, 2014
June 10, 2014
April 24, 2014
February 25, 2014
October 24, 2013
May 23, 2013