PROTECT Researchers Study Sociodemographic Patterns of Household Water-Use Costs in Puerto Rico

PROTECT Postdoctoral fellow Dr. Xue Yu published a paper on “Sociodemographic patterns of household water-use costs in Puerto Rico” in Science of The Total Environment.  The variability of household water-use costs across different sociodemographic groups in Puerto Rico was evaluated using census microdata from the Integrated Public Use Microdata Series. Through multivariate analyses such as multiple linear regression and factor analysis, the study reveals that the high water-use household in Puerto Rico tends to be that of renters, people who live in larger or older buildings, people living in metro areas, or those with higher education level and higher income.  The findings will help decision makers to plan holistic and integrated water management to achieve water sustainability.

Spatial distribution of the Public Use Microdata Areas (PUMAs) in Puerto Rico (plot a; 30 PUMAs), the average household water-use cost of each PUMA in year 2000 (plot b) and year 2010 (plot c). Note that due to the high population densities, the municipal of Bayamón is divided into 2 PUMAs (00801, 00802) and San Juan into 4 PUMAs (01001–01004).

First Time Mom with Kelsey Nixon – One Mom’s Story of Delivering a Preemie

This 4:15 video of “One Mom’s Story of Delivering a Preemie” chronicles first time mom Kelsey Nixon’s journey through the birth of her son Oliver at 28 weeks gestation.  In this video, Kelsey describes the “pure shock” of learning that she would be delivering her baby 3 months early due to complications from liver pain and the challenges to “feel like a mother” while visiting the NICU.  Her greatest takeaway?  Manage your expectations, whether your child is born healthy or prematurely.

One Mom’s Story of Delivering a Preemie

PROTECT Trainees Attend Tricholorethylene (TCE) Vapor Intrusion Workshop

PhD students Reza Ghasemizadeh, Shirin Hojabri and Roya Nazari together with Postdoctoral Fellow Xue Yu and Associate Research Scientist Lily Rajic attended the TCE Vapor Intrusion: State of the Science, Regulations, & Technical Options workshop on Tuesday, April 14, 2015 at UMass Lowell in Lowell, MA. The workshop was organized by the Northeast Waste Management Officials’ Association (NEWMOA) which is a non-profit, non-partisan interstate association representing Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont. NEWMOA members include state environmental agency directors of hazardous waste, solid waste, waste site cleanup, emergency response and pollution prevention programs.


Professor Eric Suuberg, Co-Director of the NIEHS Superfund Research Program at Brown University, presented the basics of TCE vapor fate and transport and introduced a novel method for modeling vapor intrusion that has the potential to improve site investigation and remediation efforts. From the policy side, Paul Lock (MassDEP) presented the experiences addressing TCE vapor intrusion through regulations and policies. David Shea (Sanborn, Head & Associates), and Robin Mongeon (NH DES) showed practical aspects of vapor intrusion and managing health risks associated with TCE vapor intrusion.vapor intrusion

Rajic at MIT Water Night

WP_20150305_16_39_20_ProOn Thursday, March 5th, Associate Research Scientist Lily Rajic presented recent accomplishments on groundwater contamination and solar powered remediation at MIT Water Night. MIT Water Night is a flagship research showcase organized by MIT water club where scientists and research groups present their latest achievements and research on water-related fields. More than 50 participants from MIT, Tufts and Northeastern attended the event to discuss their research and establish new collaborations in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere.