Carleton professor finds high levels of microfibres in Ottawa River

In September, Carleton researchers found high levels of micro plastics after surveying 500 kilometres of the Ottawa River. In more recent studies, research shows that now plastic micro fibres that originate from fleece, athletic wear, and synthetic materials are the main problem. Jesse Vermaire, Carleton professor of environmental science and environmental studies who completed the research, said he narrowed the issue down to microfibres by counting the plastics that were retained in the filter under a microscope. “We were really surprised at how many were there and that we found them in every sample,” he said via email. Vermaire said the department is not sure how the microfibre got in the river in the first place, but a possibility is […]

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Divestment debate places students against academics

While delegates in Paris last month began to hash out an agreement to reduce the impact of climate change, tens of thousands of people, many of whom were students, convened on Parliament Hill to demand strong commitment from the federal government on tackling climate change. In front of a large crowd on the steps of Parliament, a spokesperson from the Canadian Federation of Students (CFS) called for the battle against climate change to be fought on post-secondary campuses through the fossil fuel divestment movement. “On more than 20 campuses across this country, students are actively lobbying to divest from the fossil fuel industry and invest in green economies,” said CFS national treasurer Anna Dubinski to a cheering crowd on Nov. […]

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Opinion: Carleton needs more environmental awareness on campus

Carleton University is a space that prides itself on its extensive array of inclusive clubs and societies. We’re host to several different student organizations that promote a wide variety of interests and identities. However, something may be missing. In an examination of the formal student clubs and societies on the Carleton University Students’ Association website, there appears to be very few groups dedicated to environmental awareness or protection. Environmental projects on campus that do exist, such as the G-Spot and the Graduate Students’ Association’s community garden, which promote sustainability and foster a connection to our local environment and food, don’t seem to be getting the support they need. On Oct. 21, there was a small demonstration in the University Centre […]

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Carleton researchers calculate monetary cost of car emissions

Carleton PhD student Amanda Pappin and professor Amir Hakami have for the first time put a dollar amount on the human health cost of specific vehicular emissions. “We model how pollution moves from emission sources to different places, and also how it is transformed,” Hakami said. These models are then combined with epidemiological models to give an estimate of how pollution that enters our system would damage our health, he said. Epidemiology is the study of health and disease conditions in defined populations. The same pollutant, when released in different locations, will impose a different level of damage to society, Hakami said. “How much damage is caused by a pollutant depends on a number of things. One thing is the […]

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