The National Science Foundation's Division of Ocean Sciences and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences created four Centers for Oceans and Human Health
(COHH) around the country, including one in Woods Hole, Mass.
Frederick Tyson, who administers the Centers for Oceans and Human Health
program, says, "We have galvanized the talents we have to give us important answers to a public health crisis that is happening right now and that will impact public health in that region." Suk adds that Katrina has offered "an experiment that no one wanted but which we now have in place to study real problems that will allow us to gain a better understanding of environmental health risks."
2001), ocean health (Knowlton 2004), and coastal zone health (Stegeman and Solow 2002) and recently has described the four new Centers for Oceans and Human Health
. They will not be duplicated here, nor will tsunamis, hurricanes, and other coastal disasters be discussed, although the terrible personal and community devastation the world has recently witnessed in the Pacific will not soon be forgotten.
(1) National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Marine and Freshwater Biomedical Sciences Center and National Science Foundation-National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Oceans and Human Health
Center, University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences, Miami, Florida, USA; (2) National Center for Environmental Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA; (3) Center for Marine Science, University of North Carolina at Wilmington, Wilmington, North Carolina, USA
In December 2004, Congress passed the Oceans and Human Health
Act, which the president signed into the law.
This program offers tremendous promise for developing more comprehensive linkages between oceans and human health
as the world's population continues to depend on one of our greatest natural resources for food, commerce, transportation, and recreation.
The four new Centers for Oceans and Human Health
collaboratively sponsored by the NIEHS and the NSF (and described on p.
Senate on 24 March 2004 that the centers "show tremendous promise." Hollings, a sponsor of the Oceans and Human Health
Act, which passed the Senate in March, has said, "Because oceans act as a route of exposure for human disease through ingestion of contaminated seafood or direct contact with saltwater containing toxins and disease-causing organisms, it is vital that we learn more about how public health is affected by the marine environment."
Senate passed the Oceans and Human Health
Act (S.1218), sponsored by Senator Ernest E Hollings (D-SC).
2002) and policy makers (e.g., Oceans and Human Health
Act 2003) with the precipitous decline in the health of the oceans themselves.
In Oceans and Human Health
, the result of a December 2001 scientific roundtable sponsored by the NIEHS and the National Science Foundation, it is estimated that harmful algal blooms cause more than 60,000 individual cases and clusters of human intoxication annually in the United States.
Hoping to unlock the veritable treasure chest of medicinal potential awaiting discovery in the depths of the world's oceans, the NIEHS and the National Science Foundation announced on 21 November 2002 a $6 million grant program that will establish four Centers for Oceans and Human Health