TOP STORIES

 

12_pollution_2WHO: Pollution Kills 1.7 Million Children Every Year Exposure to environmental pollutants kills 1.7 million children under the age of five each year, according to two new reports released by the World Health Organization. Worldwide, more than one in four deaths among children under the age of five are attributable to environmental hazards such as indoor and outdoor air pollution, contaminated water, and poor sanitation, the WHO reports.

methode2ftimes2fprod2fweb2fbin2f390d4204-17fa-11e7-a725-c619aa6571c2Living in polluted cities is blamed for older men’s loss of brainpower  Air pollution may take a much heavier toll on the mental abilities of men than it does on women, according to a study.

 

pollution2Air pollution may lead to dementia in older women Tiny particles that pollute the air — the kind that come mainly from power plants and automobiles — may greatly increase the chance of dementia, including dementia caused by Alzheimer’s disease, according to USC-led research.

Posted in Air Quality | Leave a comment

Toxic fumes more deadly inside a car than on the pavement, researchers say

Being inside a car can expose you to 10 times the amount of fumes you would experience outside.

It is well known that cars produce dangerous levels of toxic fumes for passing pedestrians and cyclists. That threat increases substantially when vehicles sit idly in heavy traffic.

However, researchers have recently discovered that the fumes inhaled from sitting inside a car can be more deadly than being out of it.

That is because ventilation systems meant to purify the incoming air are still letting in high volumes of toxic particles, researchers have said, meaning car passengers are experiencing them in more confined spaces than pavements.

Scientists at Emissions Analytics have even found that the levels of toxins inside a car can reach 10 million particles in every breath – more than 10 times the comparable amount when outside the car.

Nick Molden of Emissions Analytics told the Times: “Drivers and their passengers can be getting very large doses of particulates if they are in a car with poor ventilation.

“The particles are so tiny – as small as 23 millionths of a millimetre – that they are invisible but long-term exposure is very bad for drivers’ health.”

Emissions Analytics have so far tested six cars and documented how much pollution builds up inside each vehicle. The firm said it would publish its findings when it has tested enough cars to give consumers better choices.

Of the cars it has already tested, the best-performing vehicle recorded an average 75 particles in each cubic centimetre (pcc) and a maximum of 2,400pcc. The worst-performing car recorded nearly 20,000pcc and a high of 435,000pcc.

On average, adults inhale 500cc of air per breath meaning that someone inside the worst-performing car would breathe in 10 million particles.

There are no regulations on air quality inside vehicles. However, the United Nations is in the process of overseeing talks to develop a new global standard.

Source: Toxic fumes more deadly inside a car than on the pavement, researchers say

Posted in Air Quality, Health Effects of Air Pollution | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

How to stop the construction industry choking our cities

Building firms need to start treating diesel emissions in the same way as asbestos, says air pollution expert

Poor air quality, with diesel the biggest culprit, is now thought to be the cause of 40,000 deaths in the UK each year.

But while cars and lorries have attracted most attention, less reported is the contribution of other polluters to the problem, particularly construction sites.

According to the most detailed air-quality study in the UK, the London Atmospheric Emissions Inventory, construction sites are responsible for approximately 7.5% of damaging nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions, 8% of large particle emissions (PM10) and 14.5% of emissions of the most dangerous fine particles (PM2.5).

While a small amount of this (about 1%) is dust from site activities like demolition, the vast majority comes from the thousands of diesel diggers, generators and other machines operating on sites.

Yet this machinery is not held to the same emissions standards as on-road vehicles. What’s more, its proportionate impact will only get higher as on-road emissions drop, according to Daniel Marsh, King’s College London academic and project manager for the London Low Emission Construction Partnership.

So what are the chances the industry can improve?

Given the construction industry’s questionable history with asbestos, which wasn’t regulated until 1983 or completely banned until 1999 – almost 40 years after the cancer link was proven – some are sceptical. In 2005, the Health and Safety Executive found (pdf) that each year more than 230 construction workers die from cancers caused by exposure to diesel fumes, a figure it hasn’t since updated, even though more is now known about diesel’s noxious effects.

Marsh is particularly concerned about the impact on those working with the most polluting machines. He says: “Now on a construction site if you find asbestos it’s like a scene from ET, people swoop down in protective suits – it has become a huge priority. What the industry has failed to take on board is that diesel emissions should be considered in the same way.”

Despite this general failure to act, there are innovative firms in the industry trying to help clean up. The Greater London Authority is also attempting to clamp down on the problem. In January, Mayor Sadiq Khan said he intends to bring in a fine like the congestion charge to be paid by firms using polluting machines, beefing up groundbreaking emissions rules on central London building sites introduced under his predecessor Boris Johnson.

Leading the charge are firms like Off Grid Energy, which has developed products that turn traditional diesel generators (responsible for an estimated 25% of site emissions) into hybrid machines, reducing fuel consumption by around 60%.

Founder and CEO Danny Jones says the requirement for occasional very high “peak loads” of energy leads builders to use far bigger generators than necessary, which then remain on all day and night. In contrast, Off Grid’s battery system stores excess power, turns off generators when charged, and allows much smaller generators to be used. Just one proposed motorway works installation, Jones says, will be the equivalent of taking 225 cars off the road.

Another firm tackling the problem is Taylor Construction Plant, which is providing the first UK lighting rigs (mobile units that provide bright lighting, generally for working outside after dark but also for security) to be powered by hydrogen fuel cells. This means zero on-site emissions, at a total cost (including fuel) that product manager Simon Meades says is cheaper than the approximately 20,000 conventional generator-powered lighting rigs operating in the UK. After a slow initial uptake, Meades says demand has grown fivefold in the last year.

Even slower to change have been the fleets of diggers and excavators, which until now have relied on powerful diesel engines, but where hybrid technology is finally emerging. Swedish motoring giant Volvo, through its Volvo Construction Equipment subsidiary, has customers currently trialling a prototype hybrid excavator that generates electric power from the down-swing of its boom arm.

Patrick Lundblad, the firm’s senior VP of technology, says these trials have confirmed the vehicle uses around half the fuel of Volvo’s best-performing conventional excavators. Customer demand doesn’t seem to be an issue either.

“Wherever we go our customers want to have a couple of our green machines,” he says. However, producing it is not straightforward; 98% of the vehicle parts are new, and supply chains are immature, meaning the firm doesn’t know when it’ll be ready for sale.

This is not the only problem. Off Grid’s Jones says resistance to its products from the generator hire industry, which also makes money from selling diesel, came close to driving his firm out of business. “We’re a classic disruptive technology, and our challenge is the reluctance of the diesel generator rental industry to engage in a technology that changes what they do now.”

Source: How to stop the construction industry choking our cities | Guardian Sustainable Business | The Guardian

Posted in Air Quality, Europe, London, UK | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Nearly 40 million people live in UK areas with illegal air pollution 

Exclusive: 59% of the population live in towns and cities where diesel pollution risks damaging health, new data from the Labour party shows

Nearly 40 million people in the UK are living in areas where illegal levels of air pollution from diesel vehicles risk damaging their health, according to analysis commissioned by the Labour party.

The extent of the air pollution crisis nationally is exposed in the data which shows 59% of the population are living in towns and cities where nitrogen dioxide (NO2) pollution breaches the lawful level of 40 micro grammes per cubic metre of air.

Labour says the air pollution crisis is a “national scandal”. Sue Hayman, shadow secretary of state for environment, food and rural affairs, said a Labour government would bring in a new clean air act to tackle what was a public health emergency.

“Labour will not allow the Tories to use the snap general election or Brexit to kick this issue into the long grass or water down standards that would put millions of UK adults and children at risk,” said Hayman.

She said the party was committed to putting in place a network of clean air zones across the UK where there are high emissions, and would act at an international level to close loopholes in emissions testing of vehicles.

The analysis published by Labour shows more than 38 million people, representing 59.3% of the UK population, are living in areas where levels of nitrogen dioxide pollution are above legal limits.

Local authorities including Aberdeen, Birmingham, Bournemouth, Burnley, Derby, Chelmsford, Leeds, Northampton, Richmond and Sheffield – among many others – have NO2 levels above the legal limit.

The new figures were revealed as the government made a last-minute application to the high court to delay publication of a new tougher air quality plan to tackle the pollution crisis.

On Friday at 7pm, ministers lodged the court application – too late for it to be considered.

Judges had ordered them to come up with a tough new draft air quality plan by 4pm this coming Monday – 24 April – after judges said the original measures were so poor as to be unlawful.

James Thornton, CEO of legal NGO ClientEarth, which successfully took the government to court over its air quality plans, said the Labour data showed that air pollution was a national problem which required a national solution.

“Our court case forced the government to come up with new plans to bring down illegal levels of air pollution across the country,” said Thornton.

“Those plans must include a national network of clean air zones to keep the dirtiest diesel vehicles out of pollution hotspots, if we are to stand any chance of dealing with this public health crisis.”

ClientEarth condemned the government’s application to the high court to delay the plans being published.

Thornton said: “This is not a political issue but a public health issue. Whichever party is in power, the British public need to see an air quality plan which relies on good scientific evidence and which ensures that people no longer have to breathe toxic air and suffer the grave consequences to their health as a result.”

ClientEarth will be able to raise objections if the new draft plan – when it is eventually published after the election – does not fulfil the NGO’s five clear lines in the sand.

These are:

  • The need for robust modelling and roadside, not lab-based, emissions testing.
  • Proper funding to make sure cities and towns can delivery the necessary changes.
  • Mandated clean air zones in every town and city with illegal levels of air pollution.
  • A diesel scrappage scheme or other form of compensation for drivers who bought their cars in good faith as successive governments favoured diesel over other fuels.

The Guardian revealed earlier this month that tens of thousands of children in schools and nurseries across England and Wales are being exposed to illegal levels of damaging air pollution from diesel vehicles.

The joint investigation with Greenpeace, which examined the government’s most recent air pollution modelling, showed 2,091 schools, nurseries, further education centres and after-school clubs are within 150 metres of a road emitting illegal levels of nitrogen dioxide.

European data shows modern cars emit 10 times more noxious fumes than trucks and buses – which are subject to a much stricter testing regime.

Research consistently shows exposure to traffic fumes is harmful for children and adults. Children are more vulnerable because their lungs are still developing and exposure to nitrogen dioxide reduces lung growth, produces long term ill-health and can cause premature death.

Nitrogen dioxide emissions from diesel traffic cause 23,500 of the 40,000 premature deaths from air pollution each year, according to figures from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). In April last year, MPs said air pollution was a public health emergency.

In London, Labour mayor Sadiq Khan will force polluting cars to pay up to £24 a day to drive into the city when he creates an ultra-low emission zone in 2019. The price will comprise the existing congestion charge of £11.50 per day, which applies to all cars entering inner London, plus an extra amount.

The government’s original air quality plan involved clean air zones in five cities and an ultra-low emission zone in London – but these were rejected by the high court.

Source: Nearly 40 million people live in UK areas with illegal air pollution | Environment | The Guardian

Posted in Air Quality, Europe, UK | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NYC air pollution at all-time low, data reveals 

New Yorkers can breathe a little easier — air pollution in the city is at the lowest level ever recorded, new data from the city Health Department shows.

The amount of particulate matter in the air — considered the most dangerous urban pollutant because it can penetrate deep into the lungs and enter the bloodstream, contributing to lung and heart disease — has fallen 18% since 2009, according to the report set to be released Thursday.

Sulfur dioxide saw the biggest drop — 84% over seven years — after the city tightened heating oil rules.

“We’ve seen air pollution improvements happening across the city, due to a lot of federal, state and local programs that have reduced pollution,” said report author Iyad Kheirbek.

“We know that improvements in air quality reduce risks of … asthma emergency department visits, cardiovascular hospitalizations, things like heart attacks and stroke.”

Nitrogen dioxide levels also fell 23% through 2015, the most recent year full data is available. Nitric oxide declined 28%, and black carbon 18%.

The worst pollution levels for particulate matter were in Midtown and neighborhoods with both heavy car traffic and a lot of buildings burning fossil fuels had the dirtiest air, including areas in Manhattan and part of the Bronx.

The cleanest air for particulate matter was in the Rockaways and Broad Channel.

Air pollution levels in the city dropped in part because of federal rules regulating emissions from power plants — which could be axed under President Trump.

Source: EXCLUSIVE: NYC air pollution at all-time low, data reveals – NY Daily News

Posted in Air Quality, USA & Canada | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

125 million Americans breathe unhealthy levels of air pollution where they live, 2017 ‘State of the Air’ report says

The American Lung Association’s annual “State of the Air” report found that 125 million Americans live in counties with unhealthful levels of either ozone or particle pollution.

While that number has decreased from the previous report, and the report card found continued improvement in air quality, it was found that there is a continued increase in dangerous spikes in particle pollution.

The 2017 report, released April 19, uses air quality data from 2013 to 2015, according to Janice Nolen, report lead author and assistant vice president for national policy for the American Lung Association. The data is collected through air quality monitors managed by states, cities, counties, tribes and federal agencies.

“The results are an amazing testimony to how effective the Clean Air Act has been at reducing pollution across the nation,” Nolen said. “But we still have a lot of challenges ahead and much further to go.”

The spikes in particle pollution were largely due to temperature inversions as well as an increase of drought that led to wildfires. While wildfires created harmful particle pollution, temperature increases work to trap pollutants in the air.

The global temperature has not been a friend to those fighting against pollution over the past few years. The annual global temperature record has been broken over the past three consecutive years (2014, 2015 and 2016), according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

In addition, 2013, 2014 and 2015 yielded some of the worst drought years that Western states, such as California, have endured.

Between the drought and temperature spikes in California, the 2017 report showed that the state continues to experience a severe problem with ozone and particle pollution. Year after year, California cities dominate the report for areas that experienced the most short-term particle pollution, the most year-round particle pollution, as well as the most ozone-polluted cities.

For all but one report, Los Angeles has been the most polluted city for ozone, and this year was no exception, according to Nolen. However, Nolen said there are some small victories for California. On this report, Los Angeles reached its lowest levels of ozone yet.

“That’s a big statement of progress,” Nolen said.

At present, 76.54 percent of California is experiencing no drought whatsoever, according to the United States Drought Monitor. That number one year ago was only 3.55 percent of the state. It is predicted that the state’s unusually wet winter will help the state with air pollution this year, but that data will not be analyzed for another few years.

There were six cities found to have no days when ozone or particle pollution reached unhealthy levels and had the lowest year-round levels of particle pollution. Wilmington, North Carolina, was the lone newcomer to this list.

“Wilmington is a good example of how cleaning up the power plants in the eastern half of the country has helped reduce pollution,” Nolen said.

Breathing either ozone or particle pollution lodges these pollutants into one’s lungs and can shorten one’s life by weeks or even months. The deadly pollutants can cause an array of health problems including asthma attacks, lung cancer and cardiovascular harm such as heart attacks.

“The more that we look beyond the lungs, the more harm we’re finding from breathing air pollution for long periods of time,” Nolen said.

The lungs develop until a person is fully grown, so children and teenagers who live in highly polluted areas are constantly at risk of a variety of health issues. After age 65, the lungs start to weaken, making anyone over that age at greater risk of health issues.

“Even healthy adults who work or exercise outdoors can be affected,” Nolen said.

Those with low income are especially affected as they tend to live in areas or near sources that are more heavily polluted.

Going forward, Nolen said that to see continued progress the Clean Air Act must remain a strong tool at environmentalists disposal. Mitigating climate change must also be a top priority, he said.

“If we aren’t dealing with climate change, we aren’t going to be able to reduce the pollution that we need to reduce in order to protect people,” Nolen said.

To view the report and check the quality of air in your local community, visit stateoftheair.org.

Source: 125 million Americans breathe unhealthy levels of air pollution where they live, 2017 ‘State of the Air’ report says

Posted in Air Quality, USA & Canada | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Belfast air pollution levels ‘among the worst in UK’

Air pollution levels in Belfast have been branded among the worst in the UK, with one monitoring station breaching EU legal limits for three years in a row.

The station at Stockman’s Lane recorded an annual average nitrogen dioxide reading of 50 microgrammes per metre squared for the first three months of 2017 – 25% higher than the EU legal limit of 40 microgrammes per metre squared.

The same average score was also recorded in 2015 and 2016, according to The Times journalist Peter Yeung, who carried out an investigation into the impact of air pollution in the UK which found a rise in the number of communities blighted by toxic air. The Belfast air pollution figure, derived from DEFRA stats, was one of the worst in the UK, he said.

“There has been no decline – despite supposed political attempts to reduce emissions,” he said.

Diesel cars are among the leading producers of nitrogen dioxide, prompting calls for a crackdown by Doctors Against Diesel founding member Jonathan Grigg, who said the cars should be removed from the roads as soon as possible.

“Exposure over a very long time has an insidious effect. It suppresses the lung growth of children, it’s involved in the onset of asthma, a decline in lung function as you age, and there’s emerging evidence of it causing cognitive problems and also reduced growth of foetuses,” he said. “Targeting diesel cars is a very easy way to reduce emissions. At the moment, it’s still relatively advantageous to drive a di esel vehicle – there’s not enough disincentive.”

Belfast Green Party councillor Georgina Milne, who is a research scientist, said she was worried, but not surprised at the news. “Indeed, there are four air quality management areas in Belfast declared for breaches of Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) and Particulate Matter (PM),” she said.

“One of these areas is on the busy Newtownards Road, in my East Belfast constituency. Indeed, many residents have spoken about the poor air quality.”

Cllr Milne said transport emissions are a huge issue right across Belfast and it is time to move towards more sustainable transport solutions.

“The human and financial cost of doing nothing is huge – over 500 deaths in Northern Ireland per year are attributed to air pollution. This represents more deaths per year than road traffic collisions and passive smoking combined,” she said.

“Deaths from air pollution-related disease cost the NHS over £20bnper year – that’s nearly 1/5th of the overall budget.

“We need the traditional parties to come together, to form an Executive and deliver a budget so that these life and death issues can be tackled.”

Friends of the Earth activist, Declan Allison said: “Air pollution is linked to lung cancer, heart disease, asthma and diabetes, with 40,000 people in the UK dying early each year as a result. It is unacceptable to persistently be in breach of legal air quality limits.”

Source: Belfast air pollution levels ‘among the worst in UK’ – BelfastTelegraph.co.uk

Posted in Air Quality, UK | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Air pollution may directly cause those year-round runny noses, according to a mouse study 

Although human population studies have linked air pollution to chronic inflammation of nasal and sinus tissues, direct biological and molecular evidence for cause and effect has been scant. Now, researchers report that experiments in mice continually exposed to dirty air have revealed that direct biological effect.

Sinuses of mice that inhaled filtered air. The sinus surface is an intact barrier as seen by the presence of proteins that hold the cells together such as E-cadherin (red). Credit: Ramanathan lab

Although human population studies have linked air pollution to chronic inflammation of nasal and sinus tissues, direct biological and molecular evidence for cause and effect has been scant. Now, Johns Hopkins researchers report that experiments in mice continually exposed to dirty air have revealed that direct biological effect.

Researchers have long known that smog, ash and other particulates from industrial smokestacks and other sources that pollute air quality exacerbate and raise rates of asthma symptoms, but had little evidence of similar damage from those pollutants to the upper respiratory system.

The new findings, published in the American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology, have broad implications for the health and well-being of people who live in large cities and industrial areas with polluted air, particularly in the developing world.

“In the U.S., regulations have kept a lot of air pollution in check, but in places like New Delhi, Cairo or Beijing, where people heat their houses with wood-burning stoves, and factories release pollutants into the air, our study suggests people are at higher risk of developing chronic sinus problems,” says Murray Ramanathan, M.D., associate professor of otolaryngology — head and neck surgery at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 29 million people in the U.S. or more than 12 percent of adults have a chronic sinusitis diagnosis. Chronic sinusitis can cause congestion, pain and pressure in the face, and a stuffy, drippy nose.

Numerous studies have reported significant social implications of chronic sinonasal disease, including depression, lost productivity and chronic fatigue.

To see how pollution may directly affect the biology of the upper airways, the researchers exposed 38 eight-week-old male mice to either filtered air or concentrated Baltimore air with particles measuring 2.5 micrometers or less, which excludes most allergens, like dust and pollen. The aerosolized particles, although concentrated, were 30 to 60 percent lower than the average concentrations of particles of a similar size in cities like New Delhi, Cairo and Beijing.

Nineteen mice breathed in filtered air, and 19 breathed polluted air for 6 hours per day, 5 days a week for 16 weeks.

The researchers used water to flush out the noses and sinuses of the mice, and then looked at the inflammatory and other cells in the flushed-out fluid under a microscope.

They saw many more white blood cells that signal inflammation, including macrophages, neutrophils and eosinophils, in the mice that breathed in the polluted air compared with those that breathed in filtered air. For example, the mice that breathed in the polluted air had almost four times as many macrophages than mice that breathed filtered air.

To see if the cells flushed out of the nasal and sinus passages had turned on a generalized inflammatory response, the researchers compared specific genes used by immune system cells from the mice that breathed polluted air with the cells of those that breathed filtered air. They found higher levels of messenger RNA — the blueprints of DNA needed to make proteins — in the genes for interleukin 1b, interleukin 13, oncostatin M and eotaxin-1 in the nasal fluid of mice that breathed the polluted air. All those proteins are considered direct biomarkers for inflammation.

The investigators measured the protein levels of interleukin 1b, interleukin 13 and eotaxin-1, which are chemical messengers called cytokines that cause an immune response. They found five to 10 times higher concentrations of the cytokines involved in inflammation in the mice that breathed the polluted air than in those that breathed filtered air. Interleukin 1b is a chemical messenger that promotes inflammation, and both interleukin 13 and eotaxin-1 are chemical messengers that attract eosinophils.

“Inflammation that attracts eosinophils is what happens in the lungs of people with asthma, so essentially the chronic exposure to air pollution in mice is leading to a kind of asthma of the nose,” says Ramanathan.

Next, the researchers examined layers of cells along the nasal passages and sinuses under a microscope and found that the surface layer — or epithelium — was, notably, 30 to 40 percent thicker in mice that breathed in polluted air than in those that breathed filtered air. Ramanathan says that a thicker epithelium is another sign of inflammation in humans and other animals.

The researchers next used glowing antibodies that bind to the proteins claudin-1 and E-cadherin found in between the cells of the epithelium to help hold them together. They report observing far less of both proteins but up to 80 percent less E-cadherin from mice that breathed in the polluted air compared with the mice that breathed filtered air.

The investigators also said they found much higher levels of the protein serum albumin in the mice that breathed in the polluted air. High levels of serum albumin indicate that barriers to the nasal passages and sinuses were breached.

“We’ve identified a lot of evidence that breathing in dirty air directly causes a breakdown in the integrity of the sinus and nasal air passages in mice,” says Ramanathan. “Keeping this barrier intact is essential for protecting the cells in the tissues from irritation or infection from other sources, including pollen or germs.”

Ramanathan says his team will continue to study the specific molecular changes that occur when the sinus and nasal barriers are breached because of air pollution, as well as investigate possible ways to repair them.

Source: Air pollution may directly cause those year-round runny noses, according to a mouse study — ScienceDaily

Posted in Air Quality, Health Effects of Air Pollution | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Air Pollution Reduces Good Cholesterol, Increases Cardiovascular Risk

Increased exposure to air pollution caused by traffic has been blamed for lowering good cholesterol or the high-density lipoprotein (HDL). This has been blamed for the lower HDL levels of middle-aged and even older adults living in urban areas in the United States. A research published in the Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology journal of the American Heart Association has indicated that people exposed to high-traffic areas with polluted air have increased risks of developing heart failure, atherosclerosis, and other cardiovascular diseases.

The research involved 6,654 adults in the middle and senior ages who lived in areas with high air pollution, as per the American Heart Association. The subjects of the study had lower levels of good cholesterol. Lead author Griffith Bell of Seattle’s University of Washington School of Public Health said that more than the cholesterol content of the heart, it is the HDL particles’ functionality that provides a healthy effect on the heart. The researchers also found out that exposure to pollution had a greater effect on the good cholesterol level of women subjects.

This is not the first time that increased air pollution has been linked to an increase cardiovascular disease. However, this is the first study that strives to understand the role of pollution in reducing the numbers of the HDL particles. Pollution resulting from traffic produces black carbon which significantly lowered the god cholesterol level. The study also found out that exposure to traffic pollution for more than three months could lead to a lower particle number of the good cholesterol.

The World Health Organization warned as early as 2012 that air pollution was not only an environmental problem but a health problem as well. In the same year, 72 percent of premature deaths related to traffic pollution were caused by strokes and ischaemic heart disease. Some of the deaths were, however, blamed not only on traffic-cased pollution but also by tobacco smoke. The International Agency for Research on Cancer reported that carcinogenic effect of polluted air on humans. It also linked outdoor pollution to an increase in urinary or bladder cancer.

It is sad to note that the burden of having poor health conditions and deaths due to air pollution is carried more by people who live in developing countries with poor income levels. Since polluted air is a major health and environment risk, countries would be better of if it has more policies that would reduce the pollution levels in the air. This would greatly reduce the occurrence of diseases like asthma, lung cancer, and other respiratory diseases.

Source: Air Pollution Reduces Good Cholesterol, Increases Cardiovascular Risk : MEDICINE & HEALTH : Science Times

Posted in Air Quality, Health Effects of Air Pollution, Medical Studies | Tagged , , | Leave a comment