Title: Scrutinising Environmental Monitoring - Challenges for Environment and Health
Citation: ATMOS. CHEM. PHYS. (DISCUSS.) vol. 6 p. 1867-1913
Publication Year: 2006
JRC N°: JRC34801
URI: http://publications.jrc.ec.europa.eu/repository/handle/JRC34801
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: The European Commission’ Environment and Health Strategy in 2003 and the European Environment and Health Action Plan in 2004 have set the objectives to reduce the human exposure to environmental factors in the EU and to identify and prevent new health threats caused by the environment. In order to strengthen the capacity for policy making in this area researchers are called upon to recognize the novel potential of smart technologies and deployment of new technological tools. These tools utilise advances in many technological fields with innovative capabilities for monitoring the status of atmospheric pollution in a way that is relevant for characterising the dangers to human health. This presentation focuses on how to extend our current understanding on environmental and health monitoring taking into account the capacity of research efforts for identifying and classifying sensitive gases and/or toxic substances and for coupling these with tools for assessing on “real time” environmental hazards which affect human health. This work reflects the need of the ENHIS-2 programme. The population living in the vicinity of highways and other hot spot area can change drastically the concepts of health effects from outdoor and indoor pollution. The main issues which will be addressed during this presentation are: • High spatial resolution of attributed population density. • A review of local conditions related with monitoring and population exposure. • The prospect of future European efforts in order to identify and prevent threats on human health. It also focuses on: • Improvements on geographical coverage and provide higher spatial and temporal resolution, especially in pollution “hot spots”, and allow real-time monitoring and rapid intervention. • Monitoring of both outdoor and indoor air exposure, particularly in public spaces (e.g. hospitals, schools, office buildings, aircraft cabins). • Improved environmental monitoring and control of chemicals and toxins with simple and cost-effective techniques. Detection of pathogens and chemicals using biosensors and automated high throughput bio-analytical techniques. • Identification of priority target substances and present technological capabilities and limitations (sensitivity, rapidity of analysis, detection thresholds, cost-effectiveness). • Suitability of monitoring the randomness of human activities and its relation with environmental hazards and ethical concerns, that ubiquitous sensor systems and informatics networks could pause for privacy issues and respect for rights of the individual.
JRC Directorate:Sustainable Resources

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