Environmental Health


Create a Healthy Home

The places we live, work, learn and play can have a crucial impact on our health and quality of life. Take time to learn about indoor health hazards and take action to keep your family safe and healthy.


Climate & Health

DHS Website - Climate & Health

DHS Website - Infectious Diseases and Climate Change in Wisconsin


Air Quality

Informational Links: 

CDC - Cold weather and carbon monoxide safety (safe heating)
DNR - Investigations related to citizen complaints of poor outdoor air quality
EPA - Indoor air quality issues


Water Quality

Blue-Green Algae: WI DNR Website

Drinking Water Informational Links:

CDC - Lead in drinking water
DNR - Well water information

To learn more about the drinking water in your community, you can visit the following websites for more information: 

Glendale/Whitefish Bay/Fox Point

Bayside

Shorewood

Brown Deer


Hazardous / Toxic Materials

Informational Links:

Household hazardous waste disposal - MMSD
Computer and electronic device disposal - EPA 

 

Pesticides

When spraying pesticides, follow the directions on the label that tells you not to spray when the wind speed is above a certain threshold. In the absence of specific label directions, the wind speed should be AT LEAST 3 and NO MORE THAN 8 miles per hour blowing in a direction away from sensitive areas. Wind speeds above 8 mph substantially increase the risk of spray drift to downwind areas adjacent to the application site. Wind speeds below 3 mph are often variable and may change direction rapidly (Source).

More information on pesticides is available in this WI DNR publication: Wisconsin Forest Management Guidelines

 

Lead

Lead is a naturally occurring element found in small amounts in the earth’s crust. No safe blood lead level has been identified. For infants and young children, lead levels of 5 micrograms or more in a deciliter of blood are levels of concern and can damage ability to learn. Young children face the most danger from exposure to lead because their growing bodies are more prone to harm and also children absorb lead more easily than do adults' bodies. 

Lead Safe Wisconsin - DHS Website

For more information on protecting your child from lead poisoning, visit the CDC's website: Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program

 

Radon

WI Department of Health Services - Radon Information

We sell short-term radon testing kits at NSHD for a fee of $7. Call us at 414-371-2980 for more information.

 

Mold

WI Department of Health Services Mold Toolkit

Mold is a type of fungi that is everywhere around us. However, mold can become a problem when it grows unchecked inside a home. If there is sufficient moisture, along with an organic food source, mold may proliferate in your home. To learn more about mold, including how it may affect your health and how to remove it from your home, visit the EPA's website: Mold 

5 Key Points About Mold
1. Moisture control is key—find the source of moisture, repair, and clean the mold.
2. Testing is usually not necessary. If you can see or smell mold, it is present.
3. Most people do not react to mold, but people with allergies, respiratory conditions, or weakened immune systems can experience health effects.
4. Tenant and landlord resources are available to help navigate conflict, repair, and cleaning issues.
5. Additional information and resources can be found by visiting the DHS mold webpages or by calling a mold contractor, building inspector, or indoor air consultant.

 

Needles/Sharps

Medication Drop Off Sites
Sharps Disposal Sites

For information on managing household medical sharps visit: http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/healthwaste/householdsharps.html


Wisconsin Beaches

NSHD Wisconsin Beaches Webpage - Learn about beach water testing in the North Shore!

To view beach water conditions for Wisconsin beaches visit the WI DNR website

Prior to swimming at any of the beaches in the North Shore, it is important to consult https://www.weather.gov/greatlakes/beachhazards for information on the weather and temperature conditions to determine current risks for swimming.


Food Safety For Consumers

North Shore Environmental Health Consortium Licensing

Guidelines for Eating Fish:

Federal and State agencies suggest limits for how much locally-caught fish people should eat. Limits for many fish are lower for children and women who are or may become pregnant, than they are for men. These advisories exist because of mercury and polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) contaminants found in fish. Check out the Wisconsin DNR Fishing Wisconsin website for more information about potential contaminants in fish caught from Wisconsin waters. 

Several reference guides concerning safe fish consumption are available, including the City of Milwaukee Health Department: 2013 Guidelines for Eating Fish from Milwaukee Waters with recommendations specific to Milwaukee area residents. 
 

In addition, the Wisconsin DNR has issued their 2016 Choose wisely: A health guide for choosing fish in Wisconsin available for review or print. They have also produced the Fish Consumption Advice for the Milwaukee Estuary Area of Concern guide for fish information regarding the Milwaukee region.

The FDA and EPA issue advice about how much store-bought fish (generally ocean-caught) to eat. Mercury is the main contaminant of concern in ocean-caught fish. Click here for the most current information from the FDA.


Visit the following pages for more environmental health information:


Frequently Asked Environmental Health Questions:

What are head lice and how to I get rid of them?
Head Lice Fact Sheet
CDC - Head Lice

What do I do if I have rats/mice?
Rats/Mice Fact Sheet
CDC - Rodents

What are bed bugs? 
Bed Bugs Fact Sheet
CDC - Bed Bugs
EPA - Bed Bugs