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Great Lakes Center for Reproductive and Children’s Environmental Health

May 2020 Newsletter
The Chicago neighborhood of Little Village was exposed to a plume of particulate matter, dirt, and dust after an old coal plant smokestack was demolished. On April 11, developers demolished a smokestack at Crawford Power Generating Station, a coal-fired power plant that shut down in 2012. The demolition resulted in a cloud of dust exposing the mostly Latino neighborhood, which already experiences higher exposure to industrial pollutants and are more likely to have adverse health outcomes, like asthma, compared to other Chicago neighborhoods. Community members said they were not notified of the demolition.
Researchers have found maternal exposure to multiple types of PFAS is associated with risk for miscarriage during the second trimester. Serum from women in the Danish National Birth Cohort was used to analyze PFAS exposure during pregnacy; all women in the cohort had detectable levels of multiple types of PFAS. Researchers found a nearly 80% - 120% increased risk for miscarriage when comparing the two most common PFAS compounds and those in the cohort with the lowest PFAS levels. The association was stronger in women who previously gave birth.
With shelter-in-place orders in effect across the country and local parks and beaches closed, many are turning to gardening as a way to stay active and enjoy the outdoors while social distancing. Spending time outdoors, especially now, can benefit your physical and mental health. Gardening is also a great activity for kids and different subjects like math (measuring plant growth), science (learning types of soil and bugs), and art (drawing a favorite flower in the garden) can easily be incorporated. Kids Gardening has gardening activities and crafts based on age too. Check out the US Department of Agriculture’s Plant Hardiness Map to find which zone you live in and which plants are good for planting. Also reference local botanic gardens and nursery websites to learn more about native plants. With the decline of honey bees and monarch butterflies, consider planting pollinator friendly plants that attract pollinators like butterflies, bees, moths, and hummingbirds which increase the health of plants.
Who We Are
The Great Lakes Center for Reproductive and Children's Environmental Health (GLRCEH)  serves as the Region 5 Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Unit (PEHSU) and is funded by EPA and ATSDR. The GLRCEH serves Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. It provides telephone consultations, technical assistance, and training from experts in pediatrics, clinical toxicology, and industrial hygiene. You can call our hotline at 866-967-7337.
This newsletter was supported by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and funded (in part) by the cooperative agreement award number 5 NU61TS000237-05 from the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). Acknowledgement: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) supports the PEHSU by providing partial funding to ATSDR under Inter-Agency Agreement number DW-75-95877701. Neither EPA nor ATSDR endorse the purchase of any commercial products or services mentioned in PEHSU publications

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Great Lakes Center for Children's Environmental Health · 1603 W Taylor St · Chicago, IL 60612-4310 · USA

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