What’s in Your Basement?: Rutgers Trains Professionals on Radon Measurement and Mitigation

How to Educate Homeowners on the Need for Radon Testing - Video for Radon ProfessionalsRadon professionals know radon is a silent, invisible killer, but many homeowners don’t think it could be a serious problem in their homes. The Eastern Regional Radon Training Center (ERRTC), a part of Rutgers NJAES Office of Continuing Professional Education, provides training for professionals to become certified as radon measurement or mitigation service providers. ERRTC is one of four Regional Radon Training Centers established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

What Exactly Is The Microwave Doing To Your Food? Here’s The Science

Americans have been using microwave ovens for about 60 years, and we finally seemed convinced that they’re safe as well as convenient… But it seems we just can’t stop wondering if microwaved foods are somehow less nutritious than the same foods cooked on the stove or in a conventional oven. As it turns out, scientists say, microwaved foods may be more nutritious than you probably thought… "Any process that heats a food (microwaving, baking, boiling, frying, etc.) reduces the level of heat sensitive vitamins. The details depend on the time and temperature and the specific vitamin," Dr. Don Schaffner, extension specialist in food science and professor at Rutgers University in New Jersey, told The Huffington Post in an email.

Read the entire article at www.huffingtonpost.com »

Rutgers Water Resources Program and Roselle Public Works Install Rain Garden at Local School

Bob Brown, RCE Water Resources Program student intern, demonstrates proper planting techniques to the students at Grace Wilday Junior High School. Photo by Rosana Da Silva

Bob Brown, RCE Water Resources Program student intern, demonstrates proper planting techniques to the students at Grace Wilday Junior High School. Photo by Rosana Da Silva

Students at the Grace Wilday Junior High School in Roselle, NJ, returned to school this September to a newly installed rain garden, a 2,000 sq. ft. construction in the school’s front yard, thanks to the Rutgers Cooperative Extension’s (RCE) Water Resources Program, the Roselle Department of Public Works and its outgoing 8th grade class.

Constructed before the end of the last school year, the rain garden includes various native plant species and has the capacity to store, filter, and treat over 400,000 gallons of stormwater annually. [Read more…]

Opinion: Require Water Utilities to Spend More Now So They Will Cost Less Later

This article was written by Daniel J. Van Abs, Associate Professor of Practice for Water, Society and Environment at the Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences… New Jersey has many hundreds of water-supply and wastewater utilities, ranging from small systems that serve a single development to regional systems serving a million people or more. Some of these systems have treatment plants, while others only operate distribution or collection systems that are linked to regional water-supply or wastewater treatment facilities… All of these utilities shares at least two problems. First, their physical assets — the treatment plants, pumps, pipelines, and such — need to be protected and maintained. Second, their customers want low rates. When was the last time we heard the public clamor for increased rates so their infrastructure would be maintained. It isn’t happening for the gasoline tax, and there is zero public interest in higher water and sewer rates.

Read the entire article at www.njspotlight.com »

State-of-the-Art Radon Training Facility Built at Rutgers

State-of-the-art radon training slab at Rutgers.

State-of-the-art radon training lab at Rutgers.

Rutgers recently redesigned and constructed a cutting-edge radon training lab for hands-on learning.

For over 25 years, the Eastern Regional Radon Training Center (ERRTC) at Rutgers University has been providing professionals throughout the country with training in radon measurement and mitigation. To offer students an even better learning experience, the ERRTC opened a brand-new, state-of-the-art training facility on Cook Campus in July 2015.

“Watching the new radon training facility being built from the ground up has been really interesting,” said Program Coordinator Pamela Springard-Mayer. The new facility was used for the first time by students attending a Radon Mitigation class this summer.

In the past, the hands-on portions of the Rutgers three-day Radon Mitigation Proficiency Course were taught at Rutgers’ Environmental Health and Safety Building in Piscataway, affectionately known as the “slab.” For many years, the mock crawl space and attic at the slab did a great job of mimicking the conditions of real-world vapor intrusion situations; however, the building was getting dingy and dusty with age. Regardless of its interesting military history, the slab needed a face-lift. [Read more…]