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Oregon State University

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Superfund Research Program

Community Engagement Core

Project Leader: Molly L. Kile
Co-Investigator: Jamie Donatuto (Swinomish Indian Tribal Community)
Grant Number: P42ES016465
Funding Period: 2009-2025
View this project in the NIH Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tools (RePORT)

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Project Summary (2020-2025)

The mission of the Oregon State University Superfund Research Program (SRP) is to identify polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in the environment, characterize their toxicity, and specify the environmental concentration below which they pose no threat to human health. The Community Engagement Core (CEC) will help the Center achieve this goal by responding to the concerns of communities impacted by hazardous substances and identifying effective public health intervention and prevention strategies that reduce the amount and toxicity of PAHs and other harmful substances. Specifically, the CEC will partner with the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community, the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Pine Meadow Campground, and citizens who live adjacent to the Portland Harbor Superfund Site. By leveraging resources of the SRP and its partners, the CEC will 1) identify and prioritize Tribal environmental research questions and concerns, 2) identify and evaluate strategies that promote public health and reduce the amount and toxicity of PAHs and other hazardous substances in food and the environment, 3) evaluate how personalized chemical exposure data collected by a novel silicone wristband affects individual and community-level awareness of pollution prevention strategies. By engaging and participating in community-based participatory research practices, the CEC will foster trust, shared knowledge, scientific capacity, and cultural competency among its partners and the SRP. Collectively, these efforts will advance knowledge of how individuals in diverse communities can promote public health by preventing exposure to hazardous substances found in their homes, their community, and/or their environment.

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