WEBINAR – As in drinking water

Free webinar, open to all, on Arsenic in drinking water. Hosted by the International Water Association.

17 August 2017, 12:00 CEST

Arsenic-laced drinking water affects the lives of over 200 million people in 105 countries worldwide. In those places, strategies to control and manage arsenic in drinking water are vital part of ensuring universal access to safe drinking water (SDG 6.1) as well as to ensure the realization of other targets. This webinar will provide with two scenarios of control and management of arsenic in drinking water supplies, including a discussion about technological, social and economic aspects that affect the choice between available remediation practices.


Reference database for volcanic ash properties

Just in accepted proof, a new article on the physicochemical and optical properties of volcanic ash. Undoubtedly will provide a great resource for people working on ash… but a shame it isn’t open access.

Reference dataset of volcanic ash physicochemical and optical properties

A Vogel, S Diplas, AJ Durant, AS Azar, MF Sunding… – Journal of Geophysical …, 2017


Crystalline silica exposure – a novel way to measure it in people

dust-mask-20027099Exciting work on quantifying crystalline silica exposure in the workplace, by a fantastic colleague – Dr Jackie Morton et al., at the Health and Safety Executive, UK:

http://bit.ly/2hP8NHm (and another win for Unpaywall!)

This could present exciting possibilities for environmental exposures too!

Online journals – a step towards fully open access?

For those of us without access to journals through a university/research institute, I can highly recommend ‘unpaywall‘ – a free download add on to Chrome/Firefox that helps you search for the freely accessible and legal versions of the full article.


PhD studentship – geospatial analysis of podoconiosis occurrence

Superb opportunity to work on podoconiosis on a fully-funded PhD studentship at the University of Brighton, in collaboration with some truly incredible people.

Specific research questions of the studentship:

  • Assess the links between environmental abiotic variables (chemical and mineralogical) and disease prevalence (podoconiosis), and proximities, in Ethiopia and Cameroon.
  • Integrate soil data, locations and characteristics, with multispectral and hyperspectral remotely sensed data for use in podoconiosis mapping. Incorporate the use of machine learning and data assimilation to determine the most accurate soil and health risk classification approaches.
  • Develop and validate spatial modelling techniques to provide supporting evidence for the role of soil properties and locations in the local development of podoconiosis with the view to expand model analysis to regional and continental scales.

Deadline 31st Aug 2017


Better quantifying the global burden of podoconiosis

Great work by Dr Kebede Deribe, at the University of Sussex and Addis Ababa University, who have funding from the Wellcome Trust to develop a global atlas of podoconiosis over the next 5 years. While there are estimates that put the figure as high as 4 million people, it is difficult to accurately assess the number of podoconiosis patients around the world because the diagnosis of this disease is challenging.


What’s in your water?

After major problems with a contaminated private well in our rental home, I’m keen to know what is in my water. Now you can too, all you need is your zip code:


FYI Environmental Working Group (EWG) are a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to protecting human health and the environment. Find out more about them here: http://www.ewg.org/

Getting back to work

I am getting back into my research after my maternity leave and reminding myself just how much I enjoy what I do. My role as a researcher in environmental health has been incredibly varied and has taken me to some truly awesome places. For example, I’ve sampled particles emitted from Villarrica volcano in Chile, quantified the contaminants in drinking water samples from rural villages in Nicaragua and visited podoconiosis patients on the volcanic plateau of Ethiopia.

This blog will highlight some of my previous research, and keep you up to date with new findings. I also plan to use this space to post any articles or literature I come across.