Although its origin is unclear, the acronym “NIMBY”, or “Not in my backyard!” reflects a state of opposition to industrial development which could adversely impact individuals living nearby. This concept applies more generally to a common public perception around environmental health—everyone typically wants and expects a clean environment. Many individuals feel that breathing clean air and drinking potable water are fundamental rights. There are many governmental agencies whose role is to specifically ensure these rights, because many environmental health issues are beyond individual control. Further investigation will likely reveal that your own “backyard” or community is not free of environmental health concerns.
Environmental health is all around you. Familiarize yourself with the terminology of environmental health, review the Howard County Health Department media for the environmental health segment, and think about how hazards are identified and environmental health risks are assessed in populations. With this knowledge as a foundation, identify an environmental issue in your community. The issue may be either local, such as in your current hometown, or broader, such as within your state or country of residence.
Complete a 2- to 3-page Reflection Paper, to include the following:
- Explain how the topic you chose is an environmental public health issue.
- Explain why people were, are, or should be concerned with this issue.
- Identify relevant aspects of exposure to the population within the community, including who is exposed and the potential for contamination of environmental media (food, water, air), and likely exposure pathways.
- Explain whether the concern arises from a precautionary approach or established risk assessments, and why.
- Consider your findings. Do you think that this is a major or a minor issue, and why? Are the public’s concerns justified or does it seem that many people are actually unaware or unconcerned? Do you see this issue as personally affecting you—why or why not? What did you know about this issue prior to this Assignment? Did your views about this issue change as a result of what you learned? If so, how?
- The paper must be 2–3 pages, double-spaced, not including references.
- Be sure to cite your sources, include your reference page at the end, and follow APA formatting throughout.
- Also be very sure you use your own words to avoid plagiarism.