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Linking Earth Sciences and Health

October 9, 2015

Seven out of ten emerging human diseases originate in wildlife or domestic animals. Scientists are therefore advancing a concept of integrated wildlife, domestic animal, human and environmental health—One Health.

Welcome to the 2015 Briefing Series for Members of Congress and Staff

This year's theme is "Start with Science"

Second in the 2015 series

Linking Earth Sciences and Health

Environmental contamination and its potential impacts on human health are common concerns following most natural and human-caused disasters.

Come learn how the U.S. Geological Survey is working with the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and other Federal, State, and local stakeholders to understand complex disaster-caused contamination and its short- and long-term health implications. 

Date: October 9, 2015
Time: 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Dr. P. Patrick Leahy
American Geosciences Institute


Chris McEntee
American Geophysical Union

Aubrey Miller
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

Geoff Plumlee
U.S. Geological Survey

Powerpoint Presentations:

Full size (5.2 MB PDF)Hosted by:

Speaker Biographies

Christine W. McEntee

Christine McEntee is an association leader and innovator, building a record of achievement in leading large organizations through changes in strategy, governance, membership, programs, and the fluid public policies that confront them. She is an American Society of Association Executives Fellow and recipient of the Women Who Advance America award. McEntee was also named to Crain’s Chicago Business’s “Under 40 Movers and Shakers.”  She’s currently the Chairman of the Board of the MedStar Health Research Institute.  She served as a public member of the American Board of Ophthalmology’s Board of Trustees and on the ABMS Health and Public Policy Committee. Ms. McEntee holds a Master’s in Health Administration from The George Washington University, a bachelor’s degree in Nursing from Georgetown University, and is a graduate of Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management Advanced Executive Program.

Aubrey K. Miller

Aubrey K. Miller, is a Captain in the US Public Health Service, within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and is board certified in Occupational and Environmental Medicine. He is currently the Senior Medical Advisor to the Director of the NIH, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), where he is responsible for strategic planning and coordination of environmental health issues and activities among U.S. federal agencies, academia, and other stakeholders, as well as supervisory oversight of the NIEHS Bethesda office. He has longstanding experience with public health investigations and studies, has numerous publications, and has contributed to a wide-range of occupational and environmental health issues and policies. He currently leads the NIEHS Disaster Research Response Program and has had extensive involvement in the NIH Gulf Oil Spill response providing testimonies before the U.S. Congress, participating in a large-scale intramural research study, and coordinating a variety of ongoing scientific activities. Over his career he has had extensive involvement in a number of disaster responses including the Libby Montana Public Health Emergency involving widespread asbestos contamination, Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy, the H1N1 pandemic influenza, the World Trade Center and anthrax attacks. His career includes notable public health and medical officer positions with the HHS Regional Office in Denver, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Geoff Plumlee

Geoff Plumlee is a long-time research geochemist with the US Geological Survey. He applies geological and geochemical research to help inform policy decisions on societally pressing issues related to mineral resources, the environment, geology and human health, and disaster response and preparedness. Reflecting the broad range of his research interests, Geoff has a career-long dedication to the pursuit of transdisciplinary research collaborations with earth scientists and scientists from other disciplines such as public health, medicine, toxicology, industrial hygiene, hazards, emergency response / preparedness, and engineering. Geoff has helped lead USGS responses assessing environmental and health implications of disasters such as the World Trade Center collapse, hurricanes, floods, wildfires, mine tailings spills, and volcanic eruptions. He is currently working with USGS hazards experts to help anticipate environmental and health implications of future disasters. Geoff is an adjunct clinical assistant professor at University of Colorado School of Public Health, Past Chair of the Geological Society of America’s Geology and Health Division, a contributing editor to Earth Magazine, and an appointed Council Member of the American Geophysical Union. Mr. Plumlee holds a B.S. from the University of New Mexico, and a Ph.D. from Harvard University.