public health

Air Pollution
4:47 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

Smoke From Distant Wildfires Poses Health Risk To Illinois And Missouri Residents

This aerial photograph of this year's Idaho wildfires shows large smoke plumes traveling eastward.
Credit via NASA

A new report released today by the Natural Resources Defense Council warns that smoke from wildfires poses health risks to people living far from the actual blaze.

The study used data from 2011, an especially bad year for wildfires in the US, to rank states with the greatest number of residents affected by wildfire smoke for longer than a week.

Illinois and Missouri were ranked second and fourth respectively, despite having no wildfires of their own.

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Public Health
5:39 pm
Tue August 6, 2013

St. Louis County Officials Call For Stricter Regulation Of Ameren's Meramec Power Plant

Map showing the location of Ameren's Meramec Power Plant.
Credit (via Google Maps)

Updated at 3:45 p.m. on August 14, 2013 and at 11:10 a.m. on August 15, 2013 (to add comment from Ameren).

Another St. Louis County official is calling for tighter pollution controls at Ameren's Meramec power plant.

St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley today released a letter he sent to the Environmental Protection Agency, urging the agency to pursue sulfur dioxide controls at the Meramec plant.

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West Nile Virus
2:39 pm
Wed July 10, 2013

Illinois' First Case Of West Nile In Birds Found In Monroe County

Mosquito feeding on a human finger.
Credit (via Center for Disease Control and Prevention)

Illinois' first case this year of West Nile virus in a bird has been confirmed. According to the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) the infected starling was collected by the Monroe County Health Department on June 27 in Waterloo, Ill.

This pattern of detection is part of an annual trend seen by health officials in which the West Nile virus is first detected in mosquitoes, followed by birds, and then, people. No cases have been reported so far this year in humans. However, according to health officials, it is only a matter of time before a person is infected.

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Global Health
4:30 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Wash U Center Aims To Increase Collaboration On Global Health

Technicians test blood for filariasis, a parasitic infection, in a field laboratory in the town of Madingou in the Republic of Congo. Their work is part of project led by Dr. Gary Weil of the Washington University Center for Global Health and Infectious Disease.
Credit Gary Weil/Washington University School of Medicine

Researchers from all over the world are gathering today at Washington University for a conference on global health.

The event is the first to be organized by the university’s recently-created Center for Global Health and Infectious Disease. St. Louis Public Radio’s Véronique LaCapra spoke with the Center’s director Bill Powderly about its mission.

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