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New Port Scene in Tox Town

FROM SHIP TO SHORE…TOX TOWN’S NEW PORT SCENE Delivers the Goods on Coastal Environmental Health

What do longshoremen, sunbathers, ship crews, and shrimp lovers have in common? Whether they live on the coast, work in a maritime industry or play on the beach, they can find information about the environment and how it might affect their health at Tox Town’s new Port neighborhood. This imaginary port illustrates drinking water and air quality concerns along with wastewater treatment, shellfish safety, work hazards, sun and surf safety, aquaculture and many other topics. The port also highlights possible locations and descriptions of 26 hazardous chemicals.

Tox Town,, uses neighborhood scenes – the Port, City, Town, Farm, and US-Mexico Border region – along with color, graphics, sounds and animation to add interest to learning about connections between chemicals, the environment and the public’s health. Each scene focuses on unique environmental health concerns. There are 16 new locations to explore in the Port: beaches, shipyards, algae blooms, coastal brownfields, fuel tanks and pipelines, shipping centers, cruise ships, marinas, nuclear power plants, shellfishing, fish farms, storms and floods, urban and industrial runoff, septic systems, cesspools, and wastewater treatment facilities.

Tox Town’s target audience is the interested public, plus high school, college and graduate students, and educators (see the link on the home page For teachers). Tox Town also has a growing number of resources en español.

Librarians interested in promoting classroom use of Tox Town and other National Library of Medicine (NLM) resources may find these useful:

– Resources for Science Teachers – Classroom Resources from NLM. Introduces NLM web resources useful in Biology, Chemistry, Genetics, Earth Science, and Environmental Science courses. Also includes resources on the history of medicine, information on health careers, and Spanish-language resources.
* 38 PowerPoint slides with script
* Color handout, one page, double sided
* Trifold brochure

– Tox Town
* 27 PowerPoint slides with script introducing Tox Town to teachers and students
* Video and transcript for a general audience. This 2-minute video file is 20 megabytes and uses Windows Media Player.

Tox Town® is a project of the Specialized Information Services Division of the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health. Promotional materials and Tox Town images for Web sites and publications are listed at Please send your comments or questions on Tox Town to

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