Pollution: Treating Environmental Toxins

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Green Technology is an eight-volume set that examines the relationship between human activities and their sometimes harmful consequences for the environment and explores new methods of repairing and restoring the Earth. Approaching environmental issues confronting society from a technological perspective has spawned significant controversy, and the books in this set present all sides of the debate. Designed to complement science curricula, the set also covers relevant history and new green technologies and innovations that will contribute to the field in the future.

Pollution: Treating Environmental Toxins is a fascinating overview of environmental medicine, an interdisciplinary field including physiology, chemistry, and environmental science, and its development into an important area within human and veterinary medicine. The book looks at how pollution has become pervasive-few places are left where people or animals can live without being exposed to pollution-and how toxic substances travel through the air and fall, for example, onto growing crops or open bodies of water. Sidebars, figures, and case studies enhance fundamental concepts and give the reader a sense of the urgency of the issues related to toxic substances and their impact on the environment.

The volume includes information on

air and water quality

animal health

climate change and infectious diseases


the global status of environmental health and medicine

greenhouse gases and the ozone layer

health hazards in food

pollution and cancer

populations at risk


The book contains more than 50 color photographs and line illustrations, five appendixes, a glossary, a detailedlist of print and Internet resources, and an index. Green Technology is essential for high school students, teachers, and general readers who seek information on the important issues that affect the environment worldwide.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780816072026
  • Publisher: Facts on File, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 10/1/2009
  • Series: Green Technology Series
  • Pages: 248
  • Age range: 14 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 7.50 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface ix

Acknowledgments xi

Introduction xiii

1 The Emergence of Environmental Medicine 1

The Growth of Environmental Medicine 2

The Global Status of Environmental Health 9

Environmental Health Specialties 12

The World Health Organization 13

Defining Environmentally Triggered Illnesses 17

Toxicogenomics 18

Health Risk and Demographics 19

Case Study: Climate Change and Infectious Diseases 20

Biomagnification 23

DDT 24

Conclusion 25

2 Epidemiology of Environmental Diseases 28

Epidemiology 29

Statistics in Environmental Science 31

Environmental Diseases 36

The Survivorship Curve 39

Diagnosis 40

Tools Used in Diagnosing Disease 42

Case Study: New Views on Homeostasis 42

Toxicology 45

Chronic Exposure 47

Bioaccumulation and Persistence 49

Pollution and Cancer 50

Conclusion 52

3 Environmental Toxins 54

Toxin Accumulation on Earth 56

The Bhopal Accident 60

Classifying Toxicity 61

Point and Nonpoint Pollution Sources 63

The Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) 64

How Toxins Enter the Body 64

Pesticides 68

Organic Compounds and Solvents 70

Endocrine Disrupters 72

Heavy Metals 72

Tissue and Cell Function 75

Case Study: San Francisco's Ban on Toxic Toys 78

Gene function 81

Natural Detoxification 82

Toxin Poisoning Therapy 83

Toxin Poisoning Prevention 86

Conclusion 88

4 Hazards in the Air 90

Earth's Air Quality 92

Measuring and Forecasting Air Quality 94

Indoor Air Quality 100

Greenhouse Gases and the Ozone Layer 102

Carbon Dioxide 104

The Kyoto Protocol 106

Radiation 109

Electromagnetic Fields 112

Particulates 114

Noise Pollution 116

Case Study: Why Are AllergiesIncreasing World wide? 117

Case Study: The Industrial Revolution 120

Air Pollution Reduction Technology 120

Conclusion 122

5 Food and Water Hazards 124

The Importance of Water Quality 125

Case Study: The Aral Sea 128

Health Hazards in Food 128

Contamination Routes 130

Food-borne and Waterborne Illnesses 132

Bioaccumulation 135

Measuring Food and Water Quality 135

Water Treatment 138

Thermal Water Pollution 141

Global Food Distribution 142

Energy Costs of Food Production 143

Managing the World's Safe Water Supply 144

Conclusion 145

6 Populations at Risk 146

Population Growth 148

Populations and Demographics 150

Case Study: Linking Life Expectancy to Environment 153

Age and Health 154

Living Near Toxic Sites 155

Hazardous Site Workers 157

Environmental Disasters 158

Preventive Medicine for Ac-Risk People 160

Chernobyl 161

Conclusion 164

7 Veterinary Environmental Medicine 167

Wildlife Medicine 168

Urbanization and Farming 170

Disease Indicators 171

Environmental Toxicities in Animals 173

Captive Populations 177

Environmental Detection Dogs 178

The Human and Animal Health Connection 181

A Day in the Life of a Rescued Harbor Seal 182

Clinical Advances in Wildlife Health 186

Case Study: Condors Reintroduced to Baja California, Mexico 187

Conclusion 191

8 Future Needs 192

Appendixes 194

Glossary 202

Further Resources 209

Index 220

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