Skip Navigation

Final Progress Reports: University of Cincinnati: Outreach Core

Superfund Research Program

Outreach Core

Project Leader: Margaret J. Kupferle
Grant Number: P42ES004908
Funding Period: 2001 - 2006

Project-Specific Links

Final Progress Reports

Year:   2005  2005  2005 


During 2005, the UC SBRP Outreach Core sought to connect SBRP research on Superfund toxics with the needs of several local communities. 


1.      Website Partner on Health and Biodefense:  The SBRP Outreach Core has been working with NetWellness, a non-profit, web-based consumer health and education service, to develop content for a website to assist consumers and professionals in understanding the health aspects of bioterrorism events.  This was an outgrowth of two Outreach Core activities from prior years: (1) The 2003 Outreach Core workshop, State and Local Environmental and Health Agencies: Surviving the Post 9/11 World that focused on potential bioterrorism issues faced by state and county health and environmental officials; and (2) a national biodefense seminar in which the Outreach Core sponsored a panel, Communicating the Threat: What Should the Public Know and When.  After the seminar, Hamilton County, Ohio held a practice exercise to test the County’s preparedness.  The Outreach Core and NetWellness recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding to clarify the roles of the parties in developing and maintaining this website. lists NetWellness as one of thirty best health web sites, placing it in the top .1% of such sites.  NetWellness receives around 2.5 million hits each month.  The stature and capacity of NetWellness will allow the Outreach Core to reach extremely large audiences.


2.      Providing Scientific Expertise to Addyston, Ohio residents:  In June 2005, the SBRP Outreach Core and scientists met with Addyston residents to discuss the health effects of exposure to butadiene, styrene and acrylonitrile from the Addyston Lanxess plant. Three members of the Outreach Core are members of the Addyston Environmental Task Force created by a state representative and the Addyston mayor to address the citizens’ concerns.  The Outreach Director chairs the Communication Subcommittee.  In September, the company announced that it would invest $1.05 million to control odors and environmental problems at the plant, added to over $1.5 million committed earlier this year.  The residents of Addyston have been very grateful for the participation of the Outreach Core, with approximately 20 citizens and interested parties attending each meeting.   The SBRP Outreach Core has helped its Subcommittee prepare a brochure, write an article for a newsletter, develop a poster and plan a large public meeting.  The meeting is planned on December 10 when the Task Force will present its recommendations and findings to the community.  Citizens hope more than 100 attend from this small village and the surrounding area.


3.      Styrene Release Explained by SBRP Outreach Core and Scientists:  In September 2005, the Outreach Core and two scientists spoke with residents of the East End of Cincinnati, Ohio about a recent release of styrene from an abandoned rail car in their community and the subsequent evacuation of residents.  In October, a scientist met with residents of the Columbia Tusculum area about the same release and reviewed the company’s response and scientific data.  That release is still under investigation by the relevant authorities and the Outreach Core has offered to provide residents training in community activism and additional scientific information as needed.  Approximately 30 residents attended each meeting.


4.      SBRP External Outreach Advisory Board:  The Advisory Board meets quarterly to advise the Outreach Core staff on meaningful outreach activities for the SBRP.  This Board reflects the concerns of their constituencies: state health and environmental agencies, environmental groups, NetWellness representatives and academics.  The members also inform their organizations of upcoming outreach activities.


5.      Attendance at EPA’s Community Involvement Conference in Buffalo  (July 12-14, 2005):  At the suggestion of NIEHS Outreach officials, the Director attended EPA’s Community Involvement Conference 13-15, networking with EPA’s community involvement staff and focusing on outcomes measurement techniques.

to Top