Air Quality

AIR QUALITY AND HUMAN HEALTH

During the September worship bulletin inserts the emphasis was on air quality. It was pointed out that the air we breath has been deteriorating worldwide in many ways during the last several decades. Despite significant success in reducing overall air pollution levels, air pollution continues to be an important public health problem.

Let us look at some health effects from some common air pollutants.

POLLUTANT                                 HEALTH ISSUE                     SOURCES / POLLUTION


1. Particulate matter                         heart diseases,                             cars &trucks, fire places,
of various sizes (soot, dust)                asthma dust,                                 wood stoves etc.

2. Ozone (O3)                             coughs, chest tightness                 motor vehicles, industrial
                                                       worsened asthma                     pollution, consumer prod.

3. Carbon monoxide (CO)                 headaches, nausea                 Any source that burns fossil
                                                        reduced alertness                     fuels, industrial production

4. Nitrogen Dioxide                         increased response to                     Similar to #3 above
                                                      allergens of all kinds

5. Toxic air contaminants                 Cancer, eye, lung and                            Fossils fuel

                                                        burning skin issues                     industrial or chemical waste


This is only a small part of the list, so you can see that there are numerous

types of air pollutants and corresponding health issues. Major industrial states like California have major problems and rural state have less issues. However: with increasing technology and greater and greater use of fossil fuels world wide, the problem of air pollution needs constant watching.


    Indoor air pollution can be even a greater problem for some people. Generally people spend about 85 percent of their time inside buildings. Air in most building, unless they are properly vented or fitted with air exchange systems can hold toxic gases, particulates that can come from furniture, cabinets, carpeting, pets, heating systems and other products.

Comments