Health & Wellness

Rutgers Predicts Record Ragweed Season


EAST BRUNSWICK, NJ - Ragweed season has begun in the New York/New Jersey metropolitan area with the sighting of the first grain of pollen on August 17 by Leonard Bielory, M.D., National Allergy Bureau-certified pollen counting station and a specialist in allergy and immunology with the Rutgers Center of Environmental Prediction at the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences.

The major release started on Aug. 20 and will continue for the next 48 hours. “While this has been the latest onset we have seen over the past five years, the peak will be quite high in the coming weeks due to the heavy rain precipitation we have had over the summer,” said Bielory.
The effect of weather patterns have a strong impact on pollination, leading to “three out of four Americans who have allergies being allergic to ragweed pollen,” he explains.

Ragweed pollination is expected to continue until the first frost, so not good news for allergy sufferers.
The monitoring of the pollen count that Bielory performs on a daily basis appears to be consistent with his research that climate change weather patterns affecting pollen release. He and researchers at Rutgers and the U.S. Department of Agriculture have been part of an ongoing study, funded in part by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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A changing climate means allergy-causing ragweed pollen has a longer season that extends further north than it did just 16 years ago and in New Jersey appears to be increasing in duration of exposure. According to the study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Bielory and other allergy experts found that ragweed pollen season lasted as much as 27 days longer in 2009 than it did in 1995, with increasing range northward resulting in a more dramatic the change in the length of pollen season. Allergies associated with ragweed pollen—3 out of 4 Americans who are allergic have ragweed allergies, also known as hay fever— costs about $21 billion a year in the U.S.

This was once a hypothesis and modeled as a possibility, “but it is a reality,” said Bielory, who was the principal investigator of the EPA grant. “This is affecting patients now.” 
Ragweed is not the only pollen season affected, said Bielory, as the study has shown the impact on tree and grass pollen seasons that occur in the early and late spring. An examination of other species and other regions of the continental United States is ongoing.

As global average temperatures have warmed, the first frost has been delayed, especially at higher latitudes, which has meant a longer season for ragweed. “Because warming is greater at these high latitudes, the length of the season has been more pronounced.”

In New Jersey, the season appears to have increased over the past 20 years. Hot and dry weather in source areas aid the release of ragweed pollen during the flowering season and result in the deep distribution needed to lift the pollen over the greater dispersion.

"Allergies that have been minor in the past are going to increase and become more of a clinical problem that may also impact patients with asthma.” 
 Email for more information. For actual pollen counts, visit

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March 17, 2018 is a network of more than 70 franchised online local newspapers in New Jersey and New York with more than 7M readers during the last year. We provide original local news reporting 24/7 for the communities we serve, as well as a full-service events calendar, real estate listings, business directory, classifieds, and much, much more. Readers can receive FREE enews at ...

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Upcoming Events


Sun, March 18, 2:00 PM

Burgdorff Center for the Performing Arts, Maplewood

Maplewood Strollers Present John Patrick ...

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Mon, March 19, 7:00 PM

Hospital Auditorium, Glen Ridge

Tour of the Birthing Center

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Tue, March 20, 7:00 PM

Montclair Public Library, Montclair

Martin Luther King, Newark, and the Cool Spring ...

Education Law & Justice Other


Wed, March 21, 6:00 PM

Montclair Public Library, Montclair

Understanding Liver Disease

Education Health & Wellness


Wed, March 21, 6:00 PM

Montclair Public Library, Montclair

Financial Seminar

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Wed, March 21, 7:00 PM

Hospital Conference Room 2 (Ground Floor), Glen Ridge

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Bloomfield Police Blotter February 19 - 25, 2018

March 2, 2018

BLOOMFIELD, NJ - The following police blotter has been issued by Lt. Anthony Sisco of the Bloomfield Police Department.


2/19/18 – Officers dispatched to Modells (224 Bloomfield Ave) on a report of shoplifting. Complainant (Modells employee) observed an Unknown Black Male suspect place (2) “Nike” hooded sweatshirts and batting gloves (total value ...

Man Dies from South Orange House Fire on Sunday

March 18, 2018

SOUTH ORANGE, NJ - A man has died from a house fire on Warwick Avenue in South Orange on Sunday afternoon, stated Thomas Fennelly, Essex County Chief Assistant Prosecutor.

The fire, which began about 2 p.m. was contained by about 5 p.m., and required mutual aid from fire departments in neighboring towns, according to firefighters at the scene.

Six-Year-Old Discovered Sleeping Unattended on West Orange School Bus

WEST ORANGE, NJ — When a bus driver employed by the Hunterdon County Educational Service Commission, which performs certain bus runs for the West Orange School District, failed to perform the mandatory inspection of his bus after dropping students off at Redwood Elementary School and returning to the bus depot on Friday morning, the district confirmed that a 6-year-old student had ...

Sparta High School Students Create Donate Life Club

March 18, 2018

SPARTA, NJ – Sparta High School students held their inaugural meeting of the Donate Life Club on Wednesday, March 14. Minutes after the walk out in solidarity with Parkland school shooting victims, thirty students met in a classroom during lunch to hear from the NJ Sharing Network about organ donation.

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#Enough Nutley High School Walkout: By Students, for Students

March 16, 2018

To the Editor:

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Students of Nutley High School also protested, in solidarity with students from over 3000 other schools ...

Parkland What...Parkland Where...Parkland Wow!

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Pro Staff Institute announces partnership with Uber Health

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Bloomfield Bengals Athletic Update February 19, 2018

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The Jaffe Briefing - March 16, 2018


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March 7, 2018

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Ian Hockley Visits New Jersey to Introduce Program to Empower Youth

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4th Wall Announces Auditions for FUN HOME

March 16, 2018

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Junior League of Montclair-Newark, Inc 50/50 Raffle

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Junior Summer Workshops To Be Held at Lord Stirling Stables

BASKING RIDGE, N.J. — Somerset County Park Commission Lord Stirling Stable has announced the dates for the Junior Summer Workshops, which are themed five-day programs focusing on riding and horse care. The Stable is located at 256 South Maple Avenue in Basking Ridge.

Junior riders may enroll in Summer Workshops beginning Saturday, March 17, 2018 at ...

Zone 2 USHJA Championships To Be Held in NJ and Pa.

LEXINGTON, Ky. — The United States Hunter Jumper Association announced the dates for 2018 Zone Horse of the Year, Stirrup Cup and Equitation championships, which provide members with an exciting opportunity to earn Championship Points toward zone year-end HOTY and Stirrup Cup awards. 

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- Mar 14, 2018
Past Deputy Grand Marshall of St. Patrick’s Day Parade, Merchant Marine veteran James J.
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- Feb 28, 2018
John Genitempo, The “Silver Fox”, of Nutley, passed away on Wednesday February 28, 2018 ...
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