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Water Conversations: Does living near water and greenness impact the mortality of Canadian urbanites?    Thu Apr 19, 2018, Ottawa, ON

The Global Water Institute (GWI) would like to invite you to the seventh installment of Water Conversations, our brown bag lunch series. Please feel free to bring your lunch and we will serve the drinks and cookies.

Please RSVP to Christiane.mineau (at) (so that I know how many refreshments to purchase!)

This edition of Water Conversations is co-hosted by the Carleton’s Health Research Centre, the Canadian Health Adaptations, Innovations & Mobilization (CHAIM) Centre.

Our April speaker is Paul Villeneuve from the Department of Health Sciences at Carleton University. Dr. Villeneuve is both an epidemiologist and a biostatistician. He is an Affiliate Scientist at the Ontario Occupational Cancer Research Centre in Toronto, and an Associate Editor for Health Promotion and Chronic Disease Prevention in Canada. He is also a member of the Advisory Committee for the Canadian Health Adaptations, Innovations, and Mobilization (CHAIM) Centre at Carleton.

Speaker: Paul Villeneuve
Title: “Does living near water and greenness impact the mortality of Canadian urbanites? Findings from the Canadian Census Cohort”
Date, time and location: Thursday April 19th, 12-1 pm, Carleton University Campus, Mackenzie Building (ME) Room 3235
Event Listing:

Abstract: A number of epidemiological studies have shown that exposure to natural environments, such as green space, are associated with many health benefits. To date, few studies have looked at the potential link between living near water and mortality. We evaluated whether living near large, natural water features (e.g., lakes, rivers, coasts, “blue space”) as well as greenspace was associated with cause-specific mortality in a population-based cohort of non-immigrant, adults living in the 30 largest Canadian cities. Our cohort consisted of individuals who completed the mandatory 2001 Statistics Canada long-form census (1 in 5 households). These individuals were inked to the Canadian mortality database, and to annual income tax filings, through 2011. We estimated associations between living within 250 m of blue space and green space and several common causes of death. We adjusted models for many personal and contextual covariates, as well as for exposures to ambient air pollution. Our cohort included approximately 1·3 million subjects at baseline, 106,180 of whom died from non-accidental causes during follow-up. There were slight differences in sociodemographic characteristics between individuals living by water and not, but model point estimates changed only slightly with the inclusion of a comprehensive set of confounding factors. We reduced risks of mortality in the range of 12-17% associated with living within 250 m of water compared to living further away, among all causes of death examined, except with external/accidental causes. Similar inverse associations were noted for measures of greenness. Our findings suggest that living near nature has important benefits to health, but further work is needed to better understand the drivers of this association.

Please note: Dr. Villeneuve is presenting the findings of a study led by Dr. Dan Crouse of the University of New Brunswick.

We hope to see you there!


For more information:

Contact Name: Christiane Mineau
Phone: (613)520-2600 x2516
E-mail: christiane.mineau (at)

Please tell them you saw it at  Especially if travelling from a distance, avoid disappointment by contacting or checking the event organizers' website. Register if appropriate.


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