IN THIS ISSUE
Spotlight on radon – School testing increases in Canada, CELA publishes radon law and policy scan
Additions to the CAREX team – Welcome Chantal
Updating resources – New profile developed for carbon nanotubes, summaries for emerging issues, webinar recordings
Communications update – Asbestos ban established in Canada
Recent publications – ON-DECK study results on occupational exposure and kidney cancer
November is Radon Awareness Month. Last year, we released our updated Radon in Schools research documenting where school testing has occurred in Canada. Since then, a number of schools have tested for radon, including:
A summary of the 2017 school testing results is available here.
CELA publishes radon law and policy scan
The Canadian Environmental Law Association (CELA), in partnership with CAREX Canada, has published an environmental scan of radon law and policy in Canada and the European Union. This report summarizes the current state of law, policy, and best practices, as well as federal, provincial/territorial, and municipal responsibilities. It also provides policy recommendations for Health Canada to more effectively deliver the National Radon Program and improve radon protection across the country. The report is available here.
The CAREX team is pleased to welcome new staff member Chantal Burnett, Research Associate. Based at Alberta Health Services in Calgary, Chantal has expertise in environmental and occupational hygiene. She’ll be working on updating our occupational exposure estimates and supporting other projects related to workplace exposures. Please join us in welcoming Chantal to the CAREX team. Her full biography can be found on Our Team page.
A profile on carbon nanotubes is now available. Carbon nanotubes are manufactured materials used in nanotechnology, electronics, and optics. In 2017, the International Agency for Research on Cancer classified a specific type of carbon nanotube (MWCNT-7) as possibly carcinogenic to humans, with links to lung cancer in animals. Workers can be exposed when generating and applying materials with carbon nanotubes, and exposure may occur in the general public from consumer products. The new profile is available here.
We also monitor substances of growing concern to Canadians, and have three new emerging issues summaries available on our website:
New webinar recordings posted on workplace diesel exposure, eRISK Online
A recording of our webinar on exposure to diesel engine exhaust in Canadian workplaces, hosted in partnership with the Occupational Cancer Research Centre (OCRC) and Ontario’s Occupational Disease Action Plan (ODAP) Working Group on Diesel Exhaust, is now available The webinar covered the importance of diesel exhaust as a workplace hazard and the ways it can be assessed and controlled. Approximately 897,000 Canadians are exposed to diesel at work. A recording of our webinar on eRISK Online is also now available. eRISK Online is an interactive tool developed by CAREX Canada that allows users to explore the cancer risk associated with exposures to known and suspected carcinogens in the environment. The webinar uses several case studies to show users how to navigate the tool and interpret the results it generates. The webinar recordings are available on our Videos page.
In October, the Government of Canada announced new regulations to prohibit the import, sale, and use of asbestos as well as the manufacture, import, sale, and use of asbestos-containing products. The regulations will come into force on December 30, 2018. Our estimates show that approximately 152,000 Canadians are exposed to asbestos at work, and many more may be environmentally exposed during home renovations, from asbestos-containing products, or through contaminated clothing from family members who work with asbestos. A number of CAREX partners have been advocating for this ban for many years, including the Canadian Environmental Law Association, the BC Federation of Labour, and the Canadian Association for University Teachers, and have used our data and resources to help support their efforts.
Visit our profile on asbestos for more information and resources related to this exposure.
Two new publications from the Ontario Study of Diesel Exhaust and Cancer of the Kidney (ON-DECK) are now available. Our co-Principal Investigator Dr. Cheryl Peters was the Study Coordinator for ON-DECK, which evaluated occupational exposure to several common agents potentially associated with kidney cancer. Results show that workplace exposure to gasoline engine exhaust, a suspected human carcinogen, increased the risk of kidney cancer in Canadian men in a dose-response fashion. Exposure to asbestos and diesel engine exhaust was also associated with kidney cancer in men, with limited evidence. High exposure to both gasoline and diesel engine exhausts nearly doubled the risk of kidney cancer.
The publications are available here (asbestos) and here (gasoline and diesel engine exhaust). Other stories and reports can be viewed on our Carcinogens in the News page. To sign up for monthly Carcinogens in the News digest, visit our Subscribe page.
Please note that the CAREX Canada e-Bulletin is now a bi-annual digest. For more regular communications from us, please subscribe to Carcinogens in the News, a monthly digest of media articles, government reports, and academic literature related to the carcinogens we’ve classified as important for surveillance in Canada.