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Now showing 1 - 10 of 340
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    Assessing variability of optimum air temperature for photosynthesis across site-years, sites and biomes and their effects on photosynthesis estimation
    (Elsevier, 2021) Chang, Qing; Xiao, Xiangming; Doughty, Russell; Wu, Xiaocui; Jiao, Wenzhe; Qin, Yuanwei; Earth and Environmental Sciences, School of Science
    Gross primary productivity (GPP) of vegetation is affected by air temperature. Biogeochemical models use the optimum air temperature (Topt) parameter, which comes from biome-specific look-up tables (Topt−b−LT). Many studies have shown that plants have the capacity to adapt to changes in environmental conditions over time, which suggests that the static Topt−b−LT parameters in the biogeochemical models may poorly represent actual Topt and induce uncertainty in GPP estimates. Here, we estimated biome-specific, site-year-specific, and site-specific optimum air temperature using GPP data from eddy covariance (EC) flux tower sites (GPPEC) (Topt−b−EC, Topt−sy−EC, Topt−s−EC), the Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI) from MODIS images (Topt−b−EVI, Topt−sy−EVI, Topt−s−EVI), and mean daytime air temperature (TDT). We evaluated the consistency among the four Topt parameters (Topt−b, Topt−sy, Topt−s and Topt−b−LT), and assessed how they affect satellite-based GPP estimates. We find that Topt parameters from MODIS EVI agree well with those from GPPEC, which indicates that EVI can be used as a variable to estimate Topt at individual pixels over large spatial domains. Topt−b, Topt−sy, and Topt−s differed significantly from Topt−b−LT. GPP estimates using Topt−b and Topt−sy were more consistent with GPPEC than when using Topt−b−LT for all the land cover types. Our use of Topt−sy substantially improved 8-day and annual GPP estimates across biomess (from 1% to 34%), especially for cropland, grassland, and open shrubland. Our simple calculation shows that global GPP estimates differ by up to 10 Pg C/yr when using our suggested Topt−sy−EVI instead of using the static Topt−b−LT. Our new approach on estimating Topt has the potential to improve estimates of GPP from satellite-based models, which could lead to better understanding of carbon-climate interactions.
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    Effect of short-term exposure to air pollution on daily cardio- and cerebrovascular hospitalisations in areas with a low level of air pollution
    (Springer, 2023) Hasnain, Md Golam; Garcia‑Esperon, Carlos; Tomari, Yumi Kashida; Walker, Rhonda; Saluja, Tarunpreet; Rahman, Md Mijanur; Boyle, Andrew; Levi, Christopher R.; Naidu, Ravi; Filippelli, Gabriel; Spratt, Neil J.; Earth and Environmental Sciences, School of Science
    Exposure to air pollution is associated with increased cardio- and cerebrovascular diseases. However, the evidence regarding the short-term effect of air pollution on cardio- and cerebrovascular hospitalisations in areas with relatively low air pollution levels is limited. This study aims to examine the effect of short-term exposure to different air pollutants on hospital admissions due to cardio- and cerebrovascular diseases in rural and regional Australia with low air pollution. The study was conducted in five local Government areas of Hunter New England Local Health District (HNE-LHD). Hospitalisation data from January 2018 to February 2020 (820 days) were accessed from the HNE-LHD admitted patients' dataset. Poisson regression model was used to examine the association between the exposure (air pollutants) and outcome variables (hospitalisation due to cardio- and cerebrovascular disease). The concentrations of gaseous air pollutants, Sulphur Dioxide (SO2), Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2), Ozone (O3), Carbon Monoxide (CO), and Ammonia (NH3) were below national benchmark concentrations for every day of the study period. In single pollutant models, SO2 and NO2 significantly increased the daily number of cardio- and cerebrovascular hospitalisations. The highest cumulative effect for SO2 was observed across lag 0-3 days (Incidence Rate Ratio, IRR: 1.77; 95% Confidence Interval, CI: 1.18-2.65; p-value: 0.01), and for NO2, it was across lag 0-2 days (IRR: 1.13; 95% CI: 1.02-1.25; p-value: 0.02). In contrast, higher O3 was associated with decreased cardio- and cerebrovascular hospitalisations, with the largest effect observed at lag 0 (IRR: 0.94; 95% CI: 0.89-0.98; p-value: 0.02). In the multi-pollutant model, the effect of NO2 remained significant at lag 0 and corresponded to a 21% increase in cardio- and cerebrovascular hospitalisation (95% CI: 1-44%; p-value = 0.04). Thus, the study revealed that gaseous air pollutants, specifically NO2, were positively related to increased cardio- and cerebrovascular hospitalisations, even at concentrations below the national standards.
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    Predictive modeling of indoor dust lead concentrations: Sources, risks, and benefits of intervention
    (Elsevier, 2023) Dietrich, Matthew; Barlow, Cynthia F.; Entwistle, Jane A.; Meza-Figueroa, Diana; Dong, Chenyin; Gunkel-Grillon, Peggy; Jabeen, Khadija; Bramwell, Lindsay; Shukle, John T.; Wood, Leah R.; Naidu, Ravi; Fry, Kara; Taylor, Mark Patrick; Filippelli, Gabriel M.; Earth and Environmental Sciences, School of Science
    Lead (Pb) contamination continues to contribute to world-wide morbidity in all countries, particularly low- and middle-income countries. Despite its continued widespread adverse effects on global populations, particularly children, accurate prediction of elevated household dust Pb and the potential implications of simple, low-cost household interventions at national and global scales have been lacking. A global dataset (∼40 countries, n = 1951) of community sourced household dust samples were used to predict whether indoor dust was elevated in Pb, expanding on recent work in the United States (U.S.). Binned housing age category alone was a significant (p < 0.01) predictor of elevated dust Pb, but only generated effective predictive accuracy for England and Australia (sensitivity of ∼80%), similar to previous results in the U.S. This likely reflects comparable Pb pollution legacies between these three countries, particularly with residential Pb paint. The heterogeneity associated with Pb pollution at a global scale complicates the predictive accuracy of our model, which is lower for countries outside England, the U.S., and Australia. This is likely due to differing environmental Pb regulations, sources, and the paucity of dust samples available outside of these three countries. In England, the U.S., and Australia, simple, low-cost household intervention strategies such as vacuuming and wet mopping could conservatively save 70 billion USD within a four-year period based on our model. Globally, up to 1.68 trillion USD could be saved with improved predictive modeling and primary intervention to reduce harmful exposure to Pb dust sources.
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    The impact of combined sewer outflows on urban water quality: Spatio-temporal patterns of fecal coliform in indianapolis
    (Elsevier, 2023) Orr, Isheka; Mazari, Katerina; Shukle, John T.; Li, Rui; Filippelli, Gabriel M.; Earth and Environmental Sciences, School of Science
    Many urban waterways with older stormwater drainage systems receive a significant amount of untreated or poorly treated waste from Combined Sewer Outflow (CSO) systems during precipitation events. The input of effluent waste from CSO to urban water streams during storm events often leads to elevated fecal coliform, specifically Escherichia Coli (E. Coli) in these waterways. The aim of the study is to examine fecal coliform concentration, water chemistry, and water quality parameters to better understand spatio-temporal patterns of fecal coliform associated with CSO events in three waterways from Indianapolis, Indiana (USA). The waterways are Pleasant Run Creek (PRW), Fall Creek (FC) and White River (WR). The sampling occurred biweekly over one year for PRW, nine months for FC, and an intense (∼every three days) sub-analysis of the presumed peak period of fecal coliform growth (July) for WR. All PRW and FC sampling sites significantly exceeded the EPA contact standard limit of 200 CFU/100 mL for fecal coliform concentrations during the sampling period. We found no relationship between fecal coliform levels and the number or density of CSO outfalls above a given site. The most significant predictors of increased fecal coliform concentrations were precipitation on the sampling day and cumulative degree days. The most significant predictors of decreased fecal coliform were maximum precipitation during the ten-day window prior to sampling and median discharge during a three-day window prior to sampling. These findings suggest a push-pull balance within the system where CSO activation and seasonal gradients replenish and promote fecal coliform growth. At the same time, large hydrologic events act to flush and dilute fecal coliform concentrations. The results from this study help us to better understand how different drivers influence fecal coliform growth and how this information can be potentially used to predict and remediate the conditions of urban water streams.
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    Positive outcomes from U.S. lead regulations, continued challenges, and lessons learned for regulating emerging contaminants
    (Springer, 2023) Dietrich, Matthew; Filippelli, Gabriel M.; Earth and Environmental Sciences, School of Science
    Albeit slow and not without its challenges, lead (Pb) emissions and sources in the United States (U.S.) have decreased immensely over the past several decades. Despite the prevalence of childhood Pb poisoning throughout the twentieth century, most U.S. children born in the last two decades are significantly better off than their predecessors in regard to Pb exposure. However, this is not equal across demographic groups and challenges remain. Modern atmospheric emissions of Pb in the U.S. are nearly negligible since the banning of leaded gasoline in vehicles and regulatory controls on Pb smelting plants and refineries. This is evident in the rapid decrease of atmospheric Pb concentrations across the U.S. over the last four decades. One of the most significant remaining contributors to air Pb is aviation gasoline (avgas), which is minor compared to former Pb emissions. However, continual exposure risks to Pb exist in older homes and urban centers, where leaded paint and/or historically contaminated soils + dusts can still harm children. Thus, while effective in eliminating nearly all primary sources of Pb in the environment, the slow rate of U.S. Pb regulation has led to legacy sources of Pb in the environment. More proactive planning, communication, and research of commonly used emerging contaminants of concern that can persist in the environment long after their initial use (i.e., PFAS) should be prioritized so that the same mistakes are not made again.
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    The “White Ocean” Hypothesis: A Late Pleistocene Southern Ocean Governed by Coccolithophores and Driven by Phosphorus
    (Frontiers Media, 2012-07-02) Flores, José-Abel; Filippelli, Gabriel M.; Sierro, Francisco J.; Latimer, Jennifer; Earth and Environmental Sciences, School of Science
    Paleoproductivity is a critical component in past ocean biogeochemistry, but accurate reconstructions of productivity are often hindered by limited integration of proxies. Here, we integrate geochemical (phosphorus) and micropaleontological proxies at millennial timescales, revealing that the coccolithophore record in the Subantarctic zone of the South Atlantic Ocean is driven largely by variations in marine phosphorus availability. A quantitative micropaleontological and geochemical analysis carried out in sediments retrieved from Ocean Drilling Program Site 1089 (Subantarctic Zone) reveals that most of the export productivity in this region over the last 0.5 my was due to coccolithophores. Glacial periods were generally intervals of high productivity, with productivity reaching a peak at terminations. Particularly high productivity was observed at Termination V and Termination IV, events that are characterized by high abundance of coccolithophores and maxima in the phosphorus/titanium and strontium/titanium records. We link the increase in productivity both to regional oceanographic phenomena, i.e., the northward displacement of the upwelling cell of the Antarctic divergence when the ice-sheet expanded, and to the increase in the inventory of phosphorus in the ocean due to enhanced transfer of this nutrient from continental margins during glacial lowstands in sea level. The Mid-Brunhes interval stands out from the rest of the record, being dominated by the small and highly calcified species Gephyrocapsa caribbeanica that provides most of the carbonate in these sediments. This likely represents higher availability of phosphorus in the surface ocean, especially in mesotrophic and oligotrophic zones. Under these condition, some coccolithophore species developed an r-strategy (opportunistic species; growth rate maximized) resulting in the bloom of G. caribbeanica. These seasonal blooms of may have induced “white tides” similar to those observed today in Emiliania huxleyi.
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    Geochemical legacies and the future health of cities: A tale of two neurotoxins in urban soils
    (University of California Press, 2015) Filippelli, Gabriel M.; Risch, Martin; Laidlaw, Mark A. S.; Nichols, Deborah E.; Crewe, Julie; Earth and Environmental Sciences, School of Science
    The past and future of cities are inextricably linked, a linkage that can be seen clearly in the long-term impacts of urban geochemical legacies. As loci of population as well as the means of employment and industry to support these populations, cities have a long history of co-locating contaminating practices and people, sometimes with negative implications for human health. Working at the intersection between environmental processes, communities, and human health is critical to grapple with environmental legacies and to support healthy, sustainable, and growing urban populations. An emerging area of environmental health research is to understand the impacts of chronic exposures and exposure mixtures—these impacts are poorly studied, yet may pose a significant threat to population health. Acute exposure to lead (Pb), a powerful neurotoxin to which children are particularly susceptible, has largely been eliminated in the U.S. and other countries through policy-based restrictions on leaded gasoline and lead-based paints. But the legacy of these sources remains in the form of surface soil Pb contamination, a common problem in cities and one that has only recently emerged as a widespread chronic exposure mechanism in cities. Some urban soils are also contaminated with another neurotoxin, mercury (Hg). The greatest human exposure to Hg is through fish consumption, so eating fish caught in urban areas presents risks for toxic Hg exposure. The potential double impact of chronic exposure to these two neurotoxins is pronounced in cities. Overall, there is a paradigmatic shift from reaction to and remediation of acute exposures towards a more nuanced understanding of the dynamic cycling of persistent environmental contaminants with resultant widespread and chronic exposure of inner-city dwellers, leading to chronic toxic illness and disability at substantial human and social cost.
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    Exploring the Interior Exposome Using Citizen Science: Initial Results From the New DustSafe Initiative
    (Authorea, 2022-11-24) Filippelli, Gabriel; Taylor, Mark; Entwistle, Jane; Frix, Emeline; Earth and Environmental Sciences, School of Science
    Studies of interior air exposures to various human and non-human components has largely been restricted to industrial exposures for the purpose of regulation. In contrast, little attention has been paid to exposure at the residential scale, where people spend much of their day and may be exposed to particulate sources ranging from known toxins, such as lead, arsenic, and asbestos, to human-produced chemicals of yet unknown toxicity, such as flame retardants. To capitalize on experience with citizen science initiatives as they pertain to environmental health, researchers formed an international network called 360 Dust Analysis, which provides guidance on citizen science and interior dust collection, as well as research tools to examine dust through analysis in regional labs. We present initial results from the July 2018 launch of this program in the USA, called DustSafe USA and operated under approved human subjects protocols by Indiana University ( We launched via multiple media strategies, including an extended television news segment, an article in several Indiana newspapers, appearances in several statewide radio shows, and via a widely distributed press release. As of this abstract submission, well over 300 queries were received, and after only two weeks of the launch the lab has received nearly 100 dust samples. Participants are largely from central Indiana where most of the media play occurred, but samples have also come from all over the country. We will present geochemical and compositional results from the dust analysis, but perhaps more importantly we will discuss how citizens were engaged, how the funding model for such efforts might be developed, and the general approach to research translation and citizen science.
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    Carbon and Phosphorus Cycling in Arabian Sea Sediments across the Oxygen Minimum Zone
    (Longdom Publishing, 2017-11-09) Filippelli, Gabriel M.; Cowie, Gregory L.; Earth and Environmental Sciences, School of Science
    Several studies have focused on carbon, oxygen, and phosphorus dynamics across the modern oxygen minimum zone (OMZ) to constrain how signals of modern systems get “locked in” upon burial. In this study, a sequential phosphorus fractionation technique was applied to surficial and sub-surface sediments from stations at depths spanning the OMZ on the Pakistan margin of the Arabian Sea in order to test the oxygen-carbon-phosphorus connection in modern marine sediments. Some early diagenetic loss of phosphorus compared to organic carbon was observed, but a significant portion of the released phosphorus was retained by uptake on oxyhydroxides and by the formation of an authigenic phosphorus-bearing phase. This process is unaffected by station location relative to the OMZ, and results in an effective organic carbon-to-reactive-phosphorus sediment ratio that is close to the average observed for open-ocean sediments, regardless of bottom water oxygen content.
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    We have been the ladder and held the ladder": Evolving GeoHealth models for actionable, community-engaged research
    (ESS Open Archive, 2022-11-24) Hayhow, Claire; Brabander, Dan J.; Jim, Rebecca; Lively, Martin; Filippelli, Gabriel; Earth and Environmental Sciences, School of Science
    GeoHealth as a research paradigm offers the opportunity to re-evaluate common research engagement models and science training practices. GeoHealth challenges are often wicked problems that require both transdisciplinary approaches and the establishment of intimate and long term partnerships with a range of community members. We examine four common modes of community engagement and explore how research projects are launched, who has the power in these relationships, and how projects evolve to become truly transformative for everyone involved.