USC Environmental Health Centers

Current news, events and research projects of the Environmental Health Centers based at USC

July 14, 2022

NEW INFOGRAPHIC: Hydrogen Sulfide and Health

USC Environmental Health

The Community Engagement team in the Division of Environmental Health at USC in collaboration with the community organization Murdock Community and Care Services, Inc. based in Carson, CA co-created a new infographic titled Hydrogen Sulfide and Health.  

This infographic was motivated by partnerships with communities that have endured bad odors and high hydrogen sulfide levels—including communities near the Salton Sea, in the Carson area of Los Angeles impacted by the Dominguez Channel incident and multiple refineries and neighbors to urban oil drilling. While bad smells are often framed as a nuisance, these chemicals can negatively impact health. This infographic summarizes the sources and potential health impacts of hydrogen sulfide, a toxic gas, which is usually experienced as a rotten egg smell. Increasingly scientific studies demonstrate adverse health effects from chronic low-level exposures to H2S, such as harm to the respiratory system, cough, eye irritations, headaches and mood. 

Click through to see full graphic: English / Español

“It is often in a crisis that we learn how to truly be there for each other! I am grateful for the work and efforts USC have and continue to execute on behalf of so many residents of the great city of Carson. Awareness and remedy are key components to change, and USC has helped with both. It is important to continue to report concerns around the Dominguez Channel odor along with ANY health and environmental issues. It’s EXACTLY why Murdock Community exists--so that the community has direction on how to advocate and respond. My hope is that the residents stay safe, healthy, and aware!” - Brandi Williams-Murdock, founder of Murdock Community and Care services based in Carson, CA. 

Real-time ambient H2S pollution data is available in the South Bay of Los Angeles County and near the northern part of the Salton Sea

The infographic was led by EHMATTERS fellow Jennifer Ahumada and Postdoctoral Fellow Arbor Quist

This infographic was supported in part by: 

  • R21ES034720
  • NIH R25ES031867
  • P30ES007048
  • USC Environmental Justice Research Lab

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