Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Resources
National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (NCCDPHP)
NCCDPHP prevents premature death and disability from chronic diseases and promotes healthy personal behaviors.
- Active Community Environments Initiative (ACES)
ACES is a CDC-sponsored initiative to promote walking, bicycling, and the development of accessible recreation facilities.
- Division of Nutrition and Physical Activity (DNPA)
NCCDPHP’s DNPA provides information on different physical activity and nutrition programs, studies, publications, and surveys, as well as a reference to dozens of Nutrition and Activity Related Links.
- Effective Population-Level Strategies to Promote Physical Activity
(from the Guide to Community Preventive Services) Evidence-based recommendations for effective population-level interventions to promote physical activity.
National Center for Environmental Health (NCEH)
NCEH works to prevent illness, disability, and death from interactions between people and the environment.
- Air Pollution and Respiratory Illnesses
The Air Pollution and Respiratory Health Branch of NCEH directs CDC's fight against respiratory illness associated with air pollution. This branch also contains the CDC asthma program, carbon monoxide program, and mold program.
- Environmental Health Services (EHS)
EHS provides information for sanitarians, environmental health specialists, environmental health officers, students and other public health professionals. This information is available to anyone in the public interested in the field of environmental health and reducing illness and death due to environmentally-related disease and injury.
- Extreme Heat
Provides information on excessive heat exposure and heat-related illnesses.
- Health Studies Branch (HSB)
HSB at NCEH is responsible for investigating the human health effects associated with exposure to environmental hazards and to natural and technological disasters.
- Healthy Housing Reference Manual
The Healthy Housing Reference Manual provides a comprehensive guide to the relation among housing construction, housing systems, and health.
- Integrated Pest Management: Conducting Urban Rodent Surveys [PDF - 4.62 MB]
Updates the 1974 CDC Urban Rat Surveys manual to include information about integrated pest management (IPM).
- Lead Poisoning Prevention
In 1990, CDC established the Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, which provides leadership to state and local health departments in developing comprehensive childhood lead poisoning prevention programs.
National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS)
NCHS provides statistical information that will guide actions and policies to improve the health of the American people.
- Prevalence of Overweight and Obesity Among Adults: United States 1999-2002
Statistics regarding the prevalence of overweight and obesity among adults in the United States, 1999.
- Prevalence of Overweight Among Children and Adolescents: United States 1999-2002
Statistics regarding the prevalence of overweight children and adolescents in the United States, 1999.
National Center for Injury Prevention and Control
NCIPC works to reduce morbidity, disability, mortality, and costs associated with injuries.
- National Strategies for Advancing Bicycle Safety
Report written in conjunction with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Federal Highway Administration. Includes goals, strategies, and short-term and long-term actions that can be taken to reduce injury and mortality associated with bicycle-related incidents.
- National Strategies for Advancing Child Pedestrian Safety
The mission of the National Strategies for Advancing Child Pedestrian Safety is to enhance the well-being and safety of children by reducing their risk of injury while walking, increasing their physical activity level, and creating a more pedestrian-friendly environment.
National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases
ZVED provides leadership, expertise, and service in laboratory and epidemiological science, bioterrorism preparedness, applied research, disease surveillance, and outbreak.
- Healthy Swimming
Planning to visit a pool or water park or other swimming facility? When you do, know how to swim healthy and avoid recreational water illnesses.
- Healthy Water
Provides information on reducing the spread of drinking water-associated illness.
- Rodent Control
Protect your family from Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS)
National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD)
NCBDDD seeks to promote optimal fetal, infant, and child development; prevent birth defects and childhood developmental disabilities; and enhance the quality of life and prevent secondary conditions among children, adolescents, and adults who are living with a disability.
- National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities –- Disability and Health
The goal of the Disability and Health team at NCBDDD is to promote the health and well-being of the estimated 54 million people with disabilities living in the United States. Includes information on accessibility in products and environments at http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/dh/accessibilityguides.htm.
Other Federal Government Resources
Bureau of Land Management
The Bureau of Land Management, an agency of the U. S. Department of the Interior, strives to realize healthier and more productive public lands by providing online and hands-on educational training through their Learning Landscapes Environmental Education Web site.
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
NASA’s mission includes to “understand and protect our home planet.”
- NASA’s Earth Science Enterprise
The mission of NASA's Earth Science Enterprise is to develop a scientific understanding of the Earth system and its response to natural or human-induced changes to enable improved prediction capability for climate, weather, and natural hazards.
- NASA’s Global Change Master Directory
A directory to global climate change topics such as agriculture, human dimensions, land use, and sun-Earth interactions.
- Landcover Changes May Rival Greenhouse Gases as Cause of Climate Change
- NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC)
The GSFC’s mission is to “understand and protect our home planet, to explore the universe and search for life, to inspire the next generation of explorers… as only NASA can.”
- New View on the Culprits of Climate Change
- NASA’s Urban Climatology and Air Quality Studies
NASA’s Urban Heat Island and Air Quality studies seek to observe, measure, model, and analyze how the rapid growth of urban areas affects the Atlanta region's climate and air quality.
National Council on Disability (NCD)
The National Council on Disability (NCD) is an independent federal agency making recommendations to the President and Congress to enhance the quality of life for all Americans with disabilities and their families.
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
The mission of NIEHS is to reduce the burden of human illness and dysfunction from environmental causes by understanding each of these elements and how they interrelate.
U.S. Access Board
The Access board is an independent federal agency committed to accessible design.
U.S. Department of Energy
One of the U.S. Department of Energy's strategic themes are promoting America’s energy security through reliable, clean, and affordable energy
- “Energy Smart Schools” Program
The “Energy Smart Schools” Program promotes environmentally sound and healthy school design.
- Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
HUD’s mission is to ensure a decent, safe, and sanitary home and suitable living environment for every American.
- HUD USER
Site provided by the HUD Office of Policy Development and Research (PD&R). HUD USER is the primary source for federal government reports and information on housing policy and programs, building technology, economic development, urban planning, and other housing-related topics.
- Office of Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes
Congress established HUD's Office of Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes to eliminate lead-based paint hazards in America's privately-owned and low-income housing. The Office brings science to bear directly upon America's housing and provides grants for communities to address their own lead paint hazards. In addition, the office enforces HUD’s lead-based paint regulations, provides public outreach and technical assistance, and conducts technical studies to help protect children and their families from health and safety hazards in the home
U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT)
DOT’s mission is to serve the United States by ensuring a fast, safe, efficient, accessible, and convenient transportation system that meets our vital national interests and enhances the quality of life of the American people, today and into the future.
- Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
FHWA at DOT is committed to working with customers and partners to keep America moving safely, comfortably, economically, and without harm to our environment. Includes links on Highway History and FHWA's Livability Initiative.
- National Household Travel Survey
The National Household Travel Survey is the authoritative source of national data on the travel behavior of the American public. The dataset allows analysis of daily travel by all modes, including characteristics of the people traveling, their household, and their vehicles.
- National Highway Traffic Safety Administration -- Pedestrian Safety (NHTSA)
NHTSA’s pedestrian safety programs are directed toward reducing pedestrian injuries and fatalities.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
EPA's mission is to protect human health and safeguard the natural environment — air, water, and land — upon which life depends.
- Our Built and Natural Environments: A Technical Review of the Interactions Among Land Use, Transportation, and Environmental Quality [PDF - 4.18 MB]
This 2013 report summarizes trends in land use, buildings, travel behavior, population growth, and the expansion of developed land. It then discusses the environmental consequences of these trends, such as habitat loss, degradation of water resources and air quality, urban heat islands, greenhouse gas emissions and global climate change, and other health and safety effects.
- Climate Change Site
Provides information on the global warming phenomenon.
- Healthy School Environments
EPA’s Healthy School Environments Web pages are a gateway to online resources to help facility managers, school administrators, architects, design engineers, school nurses, parents, teachers, and staff address environmental health issues in schools.
- Heat Island Effect
Information from the EPA on urban heat islands and efforts to reduce them.
- Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) Tools for Schools
EPA’s Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) Tools for Schools Web site provides specific information on air quality in schools, including tools and techniques for protecting children’s health.
- Office of Children’s Health Protection
EPA’s Office of Children’s Health Protection addresses a variety of children’s health issues, including issues related to healthy community design.
- Office of Water
The EPA Office of Water’s activities are targeted to prevent pollution wherever possible and to reduce risk for people and ecosystems in the most cost-effective ways possible.
- Smart Growth Web Site
EPA’s Web site about smart growth issues and how they affect the environment.
Active Living Research Summary Slides
The PowerPoint slide sets, based on Active Living Research results, represent findings on a range of topics related to obesity, physical activity, and the social and built environments. Each set of slides is grouped by topic. These slides are intended for use by researchers, scholars, policy makers, community advocates, and practitioners. Additional slides for each topic will be added periodically.
National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities (NCEF)
Professional association focusing on school facilities planning. Web site includes information on healthy school design.
New York City Department of Design+Construction Active Design Guidelines
The Active Design Guidelines provides architects and urban designers with a manual of strategies for creating healthier buildings, streets, and urban spaces, based on the latest academic research and best practices in the field.
Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center (PBIC)
The Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center (PBIC) is a national clearinghouse for information about health and safety, engineering, advocacy, education, enforcement, access, and mobility for pedestrians (including transit users) and bicyclists. The PBIC serves anyone interested in pedestrian and bicycle issues, including planners, engineers, private citizens, advocates, educators, police enforcement, and the health community.
Smart Growth in Maryland
Overview of Maryland's Smart Growth and Neighborhood Conservation program that was initiated with landmark legislation passed by the General Assembly in 1997.
American Institute of Architects (AIA)
AIA comprises some 300 component organizations—across the country and around the world—to serve the needs of U.S. architects at the national, state, and local levels, including American architects working in foreign locales.
American Planning Association (APA)
APA is a nonprofit public interest and research organization committed to urban, suburban, regional, and rural planning.
American Psychological Association
Site includes journal articles including "Green is Good for You"
(http://www.apa.org/monitor/apr01/greengood.aspx), which examines psychologists' research explaining the mental and physical restoration we get from nature--and which has important implications for how we should be building our homes, work environments and cities.
American Public Health Association (APHA)
APHA is the oldest and largest organization of public health professionals in the world, representing more than 50,000 members from over 50 occupations of public health.
Association of Schools of Public Health (ASPH)
The mission of ASPH is to strengthen, coordinate, and promote the education, research, and service activities of accredited schools of public health.
Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO)
This is the healthy places Web site for ASTHO, the national nonprofit organization representing the state and territorial public health agencies of the United States, the U.S. Territories, and the District of Columbia. The Activities and Programs drop-down menu includes Healthy Places, Safe Water, and Built and Synthetic Environment.
Center for Watershed Protection
The Center for Watershed Protection is a nonprofit 501(c)3 corporation that provides local governments, activists, and watershed organizations around the country with the technical tools for protecting some of the nation’s most precious natural resources: our streams, lakes, and rivers.
Child Proofing Our Communities Campaign
National campaign geared to protect children from exposures to environmental health hazards in schools and other childcare settings. Coordinated by the Center for Health, Environment, and Justice (Falls Church, VA).
Children’s Environmental Health Network
The Network's mission is to protect the fetus and the child from environmental hazards and to promote a healthy environment for all children . The index includes safe housing and safe schools information.
Commission for Architecture and Built Environment
CABE is the United Kingdom's largest public building program. It influences and inspires the people making decisions about our built environment to choose good design that reduces the impact of built environment on climate change, promotes good infrastructure, and promotes good health.
Community Food Security Coalition
The Community Food Security Coalition is a non-profit North American organization dedicated to building strong, sustainable, local and regional food systems that ensure access to affordable, nutritious, and culturally appropriate food for all people at all times.
Congress for the New Urbanism
The Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) is the leading organization promoting walkable, neighborhood-based development as an alternative to sprawl. Members are are the planners, developers, architects, engineers, public officials, investors, and community activists who create and influence the built environment.
Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE)
CSTE is a professional association of public health epidemiologists in states and territories working together to detect, prevent, and control conditions of public health significance.
Design for Health
Design for Health is a collaboration between the University of Minnesota, Cornell University, and the University of Colorado that serves to bridge the gap between the emerging research base on community design and healthy living and the every-day realities of local government planning.
Environmental Design Research Association
The Environmental Design Research Association advances and disseminates behavior and design research toward improving understanding of the relationships between people and their environments. Members are an interdisciplinary community of research and design professionals, educators, and students focused on the reciprocal relationship of people with their built and natural environments.
Healthy Child Healthy World
Healthy Child Healthy World is dedicated to protecting the health and well being of children from harmful environmental exposures. Resources include checklists for healthy indoor air quality and articles on home building materials
Healthy Schools Network, Inc.
Healthy Schools Network, Inc. is a national not-for-profit organization centered on children's environmental health and dedicated to assuring every child and school employee an environmentally safe and healthy school through research, information and referral, advocacy, and coalition-building.
Healthy Transportation Network
The Healthy Transportation Network provides walking and bicycling safety information. The Network also also provides trainings to local stakeholders interested in creating environments that encourage safe walking and bicycling.
Leadership for Healthy Communities
The program supports state and local policy leaders in efforts to create healthier communities by promoting policies and programs that will improve access to affordable healthy foods, increase opportunities for safe physical activity, and improve the social environments that shape how children perceive and relate to healthy eating and active living.
Local Government Commission (LGC)
LGC is a nonprofit, nonpartisan membership community working to build livable communities. LGC provides a forum as well as technical assistance to enhance the ability of local governments to create and sustain healthy environments, healthy economies, and social equity.
Maryland 20-Year Statewide Bicycle and Pedestrian Access Master Plan [PDF - 2.8 MB] The Plan includes five goals, 12 strategies, and 65 action items ensuring the creation of a transportation system designed to encourage walking and bicycling, and providing a seamless, balanced, and barrier-free network for all.
Meteorology Education and Training
The MetEd (Meteorology Education and Training) Website provides education and training resources for operational forecaster community, university atmospheric scientists and students, and anyone interested in learning more deeply about meteorology and weather forecasting topics. The site features modules in Weather and Built Environment, and Watersheds: Connecting Weather to the Environment.
National Association of County and City Health Officials
The National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) provides education, information, research, and technical assistance to local health departments and facilitates partnerships among local, state, and federal agencies in order to promote and strengthen public health.
- NACCHO Exchange, Spring 2003, Volume 2, Issue 1
This edition of the NACCHO quarterly newsletter is largely devoted to health and built environment issues. NACCHO Exchange is distributed to more than 3,000 public health organizations across the United States and Canada.
National Bicycle Safety Network (NBSN)
In co-leadership with CDC, the National Bicycle Safety Network (NBSN) was established to define an agenda for enhancing bicycle safety. NBSN strives to reduce the number of bicycle injuries by promoting bicycle safety through public education, information sharing, and appropriate environmental changes.
National Center for Bicycling & Walking (NCBW)
National Center for Bicycling & Walking (founded as the Bicycle Federation of America) has been working for more bicycle-friendly and walkable communities. This Web site is designed to support the activities and initiatives of people across the country working in their professional work and private lives to make America a better place to walk and to bicycle.
National Center for Healthy Housing (NCHH)
NCHH, formerly the center for Lead-Safe Housing, was founded in 1992 to bring the housing, environmental, and public health communities together to combat childhood lead poisoning.
National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL)
NCSL is a bipartisan organization dedicated to serving the lawmakers and staffs of the nation's 50 states, its commonwealths, and its territories. NCSL is a source for research, publications, consulting services, meetings, and seminars and is the national conduit for lawmakers to communicate with one another and share ideas.
National Governors Association (NGA)
NGA is the collective voice of the nation's governors. The NGA Center for Best Practices focuses on state innovations and best practices on issues that range from education and health to technology, welfare reform, and the environment.
The National Trust for Historic Preservation provides leadership, education, and advocacy to save America's diverse historic places and revitalize our communities.
Network of Employers for Traffic Safety
The Network of Employers for Traffic Safety offers online resources to help employers promote bicycle safety in the workplace whether employees bike to and from work, or solely for recreational purposes.
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is the largest U.S. foundation devoted to improving the health and health care of all Americans.
Society for Public Health Education
SOPHE is an independent, international professional association made up of a diverse membership of health education professionals and students. The Society promotes healthy behaviors, healthy communities, and healthy environments through its membership, its network of local chapters, and its numerous partnerships with other organizations. With its primary focus on public health education, SOPHE offers a Webinar in "Reconnecting Kids with Nature for Health Benefits."
Stormwater Manager’s Resource Center (SMRC)
The Stormwater Manager's Resource Center is designed specifically for stormwater practitioners, local government officials and others that need technical assistance on stormwater management issues. Created and maintained by the Center for Watershed Protection, SMRC has everything you need to know about stormwater in a single site.
Sustainable Sites Initiative
The Sustainable Sites Initiative is an interdisciplinary partnership between the American Society of Landscape Architects, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, the United States Botanic Garden and a diverse group of stakeholder organizations to develop guidelines and standards for landscape sustainability.The motivation behind this initiative stems from the desire to protect and enhance the ability of landscapes to provide services such as climate regulation, clean air and water, and improved quality of life.
The Trust for Public Land
The Trust for Public Land conserves land for people to improve the quality of life in our communities and to protect our natural and historic resources for future generations.
- From Fitness Zones to the Medical Mile: How Urban Park Systems Can Best Promote Health and Wellness [PDF - 1.48 MB]
Partially funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the report details more than 75 innovative features and programs including 14 case studies that maximize a park’s ability to promote physical activity and improve mental health. The report is intended for use by park professionals and advocates, concerned citizens, government leaders, and health officials.
- City Park Data
The latest data from Peter Harnick evaluates 55 cities on open space per 1,000 residents, park-related expenditures by resident, and parks and open space as a percentage of city area.
U.S. Green Building Council
The U.S. Green Building Council is a community of leaders working to make green buildings accessible to everyone within a generation. The site is the primary information resource on the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System™. LEED encourages and accelerates global adoption of sustainable green building and development practices through the creation and implementation of universally understood and accepted tools and performance criteria.
World Health Organization
The World Health Organization, the directing and coordinating authority health within the United Nations system, provides information on health impact assessement (HIA). HIA is a combination of procedures, methods and tools by which a policy, programme or project may be judged as to its potential effects on the health of a population, and the distribution of those effects within the population.
Built Environment and Public Health Course Curriculum
The CDC-funded University of Virginia site features a module designed to provide a critical overview of built environment and health topics organized in a curriculum for full academic semester or as individual modules. The module curriculum was developed in collaboration with faculty from U.S. planning and public health schools, based on their experience teaching built environment and health courses.
Design for Health
Design for Health (DFH) is a collaborative project between the University of Minnesota, Cornell University, and the University of Colorado that serves to bridge the gap between the emerging research base on community design and healthy living and the everyday realities of local government planning. The first phase of DFH (2006-08) created innovative, practice-oriented tools to help integrate human health into urban planning and environmental design in nineteen partner communities. The second phase is focused on tool development and public education.
Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access
The IDEA Center is dedicated to improving the design of environments and products by making them more usable, safer and appealing to people with a wide range of abilities throughout their life spans.
Center for Universal Design
The Center for Universal Design is a national research, information, and technical assistance center that evaluates, develops, and promotes universal design in housing, public and commercial facilities, and related products.
Community Design: A toolkit for building physical activity into daily life [PDF - 8.4 MB]
This toolkit, prepared by by the Metropolitan Design Center, College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, University of Minnesota, starts with general information on how the environment matters in physical activity and then provides more detail about four key dimensions of the environment: density, street pattern, mixed-use and pedestrian infrastructure.
Institute on Aging and Environment at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, School of Architecture and Urban Planning
Promotes research, scholarship, and service concerning environments for
Landscape and Human Health Laboratory (LHHL)
The Landscape and Human Health Laboratory (LHHL) is a multidisciplinary research laboratory dedicated to studying the connection between greenery and human health.
National Center for Smart Growth Research and Education
The National Center for Smart Growth Research and Education is a non-partisan center for research and leadership training on smart growth and related land use issues in Maryland, in metropolitan regions around the nation, and in Asia and Europe. The mission of the Center is to bring the diverse resources of the University of Maryland and a network of national experts to bear on issues related to land use and the environment, transportation and public health, housing and community development, and international urban development.
National Center on Accessibility
Under a cooperative agreement with the National Park Service, the program based at Indiana University promotes access and inclusion for people with disabilities in parks, recreation and tourism.
National Program for Playground Safety (NPPS)
NPPS' mission is to help the public create safe and developmentally appropriate play environments for children. NPPS was established at the University of Northern Iowa with funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Injury Prevention. NPPS has the largest and most comprehensive clearinghouse of outdoor play areas safety information and resources in the United States.
Public Health Grand Rounds
The University of North Carolina and The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention sponsor the Public Health Grand Rounds satellite broadcast and webcast series to present real-world case studies on public health issues.
- The Epidemic of Obesity: Personal Choice or Environmental Consequence? (June 27, 2002)
This purpose of this grand round was to increase awareness of personal and environmental risk factors contributing to obesity, to promote traditional and nontraditional public health partnerships, and to strengthen the public health infrastructure.
- Urban Sprawl: What’s Health Got to Do With It? (January 18, 2002)
This purpose of this grand round was to discuss urban sprawl and its affects on land use, transportation, and social and economic development, as well as the implications for our health. The grand round examines the case of Portland, Oregon, a community that has made great strides in containing urban sprawl.
- Healthy Places Leading to Healthy People: Community Engagement Improves Health for All (May 11, 2007)
The rural community of Wabasso located in Indian River County, Florida successfully used a community engagement approach, stimulated by a tool called the Protocol for Assessing Community Excellence in Environmental Health (PACE-EH), to address critical health, social and environmental issues such as safe streets, secure housing, water quality, crime prevention and physical activity promotion.
The National Center on Physical Activity and Disability (NCPAD)
The mission of NCPAD is to promote the substantial health benefits that can be gained from participating in regular physical activity. The site provides information and resources that can enable people with disabilities to become as physically active as they choose to be. Resources include the CDC-funded AIMFREE (Accessibility Instruments Measuring Fitness and Recreation Environments) manuals that help persons with mobility limitations and professionals (i.e., fitness and recreation center staff, and/or owners of fitness centers) assess the accessibility of recreation and fitness facilities, including fitness centers and swimming pools.
- Page last reviewed: October 15, 2009
- Page last updated: June 18, 2013
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