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Karlsson L.,Vermont Agency of Human Services | Karlsson L.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention | Cragin L.,Vermont Agency of Human Services | Center G.,Vermont Agency of Human Services | And 4 more authors.
American Journal of Public Health | Year: 2013

In 2009, after resident calls regarding an odor, the Vermont Department of Health and state partners responded to 2 scenarios of private drinking water contamination from utility poles treated with pentachlorophenol (PCP), an organochlorine wood preservative used in the United States. Public health professionals should consider PCP contamination of private water if they receive calls about a chemical or gasoline-like odor with concurrent history of nearby utility pole replacement. Copyright © 2012 by the American Public Health Association®.

Kim J.J.,Vermont Geological Survey | Comstock J.,Vermont Agency of Agriculture | Ryan P.,Middlebury College | Heindel C.,Waite Heindel Environmental Management | Koenigsberger S.,Middlebury College
Science of the Total Environment | Year: 2016

In 2000, elevated nitrate concentrations ranging from 12 to 34 mg/L NO3[Formula presented] were discovered in groundwater from numerous domestic bedrock wells adjacent to a large dairy farm in central Vermont. Long-term plots and contours of nitrate vs. time for bedrock wells showed “little/no”, “moderate”, and “large” change patterns that were spatially separable. The metasedimentary bedrock aquifer is strongly anisotropic and groundwater flow is controlled by fractures, bedding/foliation, and basins and ridges in the bedrock surface. Integration of the nitrate concentration vs. time data and the physical and chemical aquifer characterization suggest two nitrate sources: a point source emanating from a waste ravine and a non-point source that encompasses the surrounding fields. Once removed, the point source of NO3 (manure deposited in a ravine) was exhausted and NO3 dropped from 34 mg/L to < 10 mg/L after ~ 10 years; however, persistence of NO3 in the 3 to 8 mg/L range (background) reflects the long term flux of nitrates from nutrients applied to the farm fields surrounding the ravine over the years predating and including this study. Inferred groundwater flow rates from the waste ravine to either moderate change wells in basin 2 or to the shallow bedrock zone beneath the large change wells are 0.05 m/day, well within published bedrock aquifer flow rates. Enrichment of 15N and 18O in nitrate is consistent with lithotrophic denitrification of NO3 in the presence of dissolved Mn and Fe. Once the ravine point-source was removed, denitrification and dilution collectively were responsible for the down-gradient decrease of nitrate in this bedrock aquifer. Denitrification was most influential when NO3[Formula presented] was > 10 mg/L. Our multidisciplinary methods of aquifer characterization are applicable to groundwater contamination in any complexly-deformed and metamorphosed bedrock aquifer. © 2016 Elsevier B.V.

Lewis C.B.,Vermont Agency of Agriculture | Peters C.J.,Tufts University
Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems | Year: 2012

Demand for locally and regionally produced meat has stimulated increased interest in livestock production among New England farmers. The region's livestock producers lament lack of access to slaughter and processing infrastructure. However, there is very little research on New England's slaughter industry to document this perceived problem. For this reason, we tested the hypothesis that a shortage of slaughter and processing infrastructure constrains the production of livestock for meat in New England. The region's large animal slaughter facility owners and managers were surveyed to determine current slaughter and processing capacity and identify challenges facilities face in meeting increased producer demand. The estimates of current capacity were then compared to USDA data on livestock slaughter and large animal marketings. The region's existing abattoirs could slaughter 63-84% of all animals marketed, but could process only 29-43%. New England's infrastructure for slaughter operated at only 38% of total physical capacity in 2009, while on-site processing infrastructure operated at 66% of total physical capacity (78% if only on-site inspected capacity is considered). Moreover, surveys with facility operators showed that the primary constraints faced by existing slaughterhouses are a shortage of skilled labor and the seasonality of the livestock industry, with periods of very high demand for slaughter in the fall and very low demand in the spring and early summer. Additional infrastructure, particularly for processing, would be needed were regional livestock production to increase. However, simply increasing physical capacity will not address the issues of labor availability and demand seasonality expressed by slaughter facility owners. © 2011 Cambridge University Press.

Saxton-Shaw K.D.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention | Ledermann J.P.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention | Kenney J.L.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention | Graham A.C.,Vermont Agency of Agriculture | And 3 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2015

The first known outbreak of eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) in Vermont occurred on an emu farm in Rutland County in 2011. The first isolation of EEE virus (EEEV) in Vermont (VT11) was during this outbreak. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that VT11 was most closely related to FL01, a strain from Florida isolated in 2001, which is both geographically and temporally distinct from VT11. EEEV RNA was not detected in any of the 3,905 mosquito specimens tested, and the specific vectors associated with this outbreak are undetermined.Copyright: This is an open access article, free of all copyright, and may be freely reproduced, distributed, transmitted, modified, built upon, or otherwise used by anyone for any lawful purpose. The work is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. © 2015, Public Library of Science. All rights reserved. This is an open access article, free of all copyright, and may be freely reproduced, distributed, transmitted, modified, built upon, or otherwise used by anyone for any lawful purpose. The work is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication.

Nelson C.A.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention | Hayes C.M.,University of Vermont | Markowitz M.A.,University of Vermont | Flynn J.J.,University of Massachusetts Boston | And 4 more authors.
Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases | Year: 2016

Reducing exposure to ticks can help prevent Lyme disease and other tickborne diseases. Although it is currently recommended to dry clothes on high heat for one hour to kill ticks on clothing after spending time outdoors, this recommendation is based on a single published study of tick survival under various washing conditions and a predetermined one-hour drying time. We conducted a series of tests to investigate the effects of temperature, humidity, and drying time on killing nymphal and adult blacklegged ticks (Ixodes scapularis). Muslin bags containing 5 ticks each were washed then dried or dried only with six cotton towels during each drying cycle. All nymphal and adult ticks were killed when exposed to wash cycles when the water temperature reached ≥54. °C (≥130. °F); however, 50% of ticks survived hot water washes when the water temperature was <54. °C. The majority (94%) of ticks survived warm washes [temperature range, 27-46. °C (80-115. °F)] and all ticks survived cold washes [15-27. °C (59-80. °F)]. When subsequently dried on high heat setting [54-85. °C (129-185. °F)], it took 50. min to kill all ticks (95% confidence limit, 55. min). Most significantly, we found that all adult and nymphal ticks died when placed directly in the dryer with dry towels and dried for 4. min on high heat (95% confidence limit, 6. min). We have identified effective, easily implemented methods to rid clothing of ticks after spending time outdoors. Placing clothing directly in a dryer and drying for a minimum of 6. min on high heat will effectively kill ticks on clothing. If clothing is soiled and requires washing first, our results indicate clothing should be washed with water temperature ≥54. °C (≥130. °F) to kill ticks. When practiced with other tick-bite prevention methods, these techniques could further reduce the risk of acquiring tickborne diseases. © 2016.

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