Environmental Health

Environmental health refers to the area of public health that aims to identify environmental hazards and examine how they are shaped by physical, chemical, biological, social, and structural factors. These hazards can be evaluated at the global scale (e.g., climate change) as well as from regional or local perspectives (e.g., air pollution, waste management, neighborhood design).

Some issues of environmental health are rural, such as the impact of dam construction of the prevalence of parasitic disease. Others are concentrated in urban areas and stem from the built form of the city and the presence of toxins in this environment.

Questions of environmental health are mitigated by race, gender, class, and geography. Importantly, environmental exposures are often concentrated among underserved communities, and thus the field of environmental health is closely connected to questions of environmental justice and environmental racism.

UCSC faculty from the Biological Sciences, the Social Sciences, and the Humanities are working together to better understand the historical and structural relations that link human communities to the material environment, the environmental determinants of human health, and how the disproportionate impact of environmental threats to human health on underserved communities and those in the Global South might be reduced.

Chris Benner

  • Pronouns
    • he, him, his, his, himself
  • Title
    • Professor
  • Department
    • Environmental Studies Department
  • Campus Email
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise
    • Urban studies
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Raquel Chamorro-Garcia

  • Title
    • Assistant Professor
  • Department
    • Microbiology & Environmental Toxicology Department
  • Campus Email
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Jennifer L. Derr

  • Pronouns
    • she/they
  • Title
    • Associate Professor; Founding Director, Center for the Middle East and North Africa at UC Santa Cruz
  • Department
    • History Department
  • Campus Email
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise
    • Disease and Immunity
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Lindsey Dillon

  • Title
    • Assistant Professor
  • Department
    • Sociology Department
  • Campus Email
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise
    • Activism
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Madeleine Fairbairn

  • Title
    • Associate Professor
  • Department
    • Environmental Studies Department
  • Campus Email
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise
    • Agroecology and Agriculture
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Julie H Guthman

  • Title
    • Professor
  • Department
    • Community Studies Program
  • Campus Email
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise
    • Agroecology and Agriculture
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Flora Lu

  • Pronouns
    • she, her, her, hers, herself
  • Title
    • Provost, Colleges Nine and Ten
  • Department
    • Environmental Studies Department
  • Campus Email
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise
    • Environmental Studies
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Jennifer Maytorena Taylor

  • Title
    • Associate Professor
  • Department
    • Film and Digital Media Department
  • Campus Email
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Carrie L. Partch

  • Pronouns
    • she, her, her, hers, herself
  • Title
    • Professor
  • Department
    • Chemistry & Biochemistry Department
  • Campus Email
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise
    • Biochemistry
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Stacy M Philpott

  • Pronouns
    • she, her, her, hers, herself
  • Title
    • Professor
  • Department
    • Environmental Studies Department
  • Campus Email
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise
    • Ecology
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Mary Beth Pudup

  • Title
    • Associate Professor
  • Department
    • Community Studies Program
  • Campus Email
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S. Ravi Rajan

  • Title
    • Professor
  • Department
    • Environmental Studies Department
  • Campus Email
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise
    • Environmental Human Rights
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Chad W Saltikov

  • Title
    • Professor
  • Department
    • Microbiology & Environmental Toxicology Department
  • Campus Email
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise
    • Microbiology
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Pallab Sarker

  • Title
    • Assistant Professor
  • Department
    • Environmental Studies Department
  • Campus Email
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Upasna Sharma

  • Title
    • Assistant Professor
  • Department
    • Molecular, Cell, & Developmental Biology Department
  • Campus Email
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Don Smith

  • Pronouns
    • he, him, his, his, himself
  • Title
    • Associate Dean of Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs, Distinguished Professor
  • Department
    • Microbiology & Environmental Toxicology Department
  • Campus Email
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise
    • Biomedical Sciences
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Anna L Tsing

  • Title
    • Professor
  • Department
    • Anthropology Department
  • Campus Email
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Fitnat H. Yildiz

  • Title
    • Distinguished Professor
  • Department
    • Microbiology & Environmental Toxicology Department
  • Campus Email
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