The Green Living Guy

First of all, there is consensus among experts. To begin, that climate change is happening. As well as it is playing a role in multiplying negative health impacts. As well as; all across the globe. I mean that health conditions will exponentially increase. Especially as we approach the environmental tipping points now. You know, the ones scientists also they have warned us about.

Most noteworthy, a recent survey revealed that the majority of Americans believe that climate change is causing harm. Yet, they also do not believe their health is being affected personally.

They’re wrong: climate change is already affecting all of us. It is through negative impacts on our health independent of age, health status, socioeconomic class, or geographic location. Our personal health is intrinsically tied to the health of this planet.

Frankly, the planet has a breathing problem.

For humans, more over, breathing is the act of taking in oxygen and exhaling carbon dioxide. Adults consequently do it an average of about 16 times a minute. In complementary symmetry, our planet has a “breathing” cycle. One that works as a result in the exact opposite way. I mean plants on land and plankton in water. So as a result take they in our carbon dioxide. Then it releases our life-sustaining oxygen.

More over, CNN reporting more Americans are breathing air that will make them sick. This is also according to the American Lung Association’s annual State of the Air report. 

According to the American Lung Association, The American Lung Association’s 2019 “State of the Air” report finds that an increasing number of Americans—more than 4 in 10—lived with unhealthy air quality. Thereby placing their health and lives at risk.

The 20th annual air quality “report card” also found that 141.1 million people are affected. They live in counties with unhealthful levels of either ozone or particle pollution. This is consequently an increase of more than 7.2 million Americans. That’s mind you since the last year.

So eight cities recorded their highest number of days with unhealthy spikes in particle pollution. That’s most noteworthy since the nation began monitoring this pollutant 20 years ago. And the nation recorded more days with air quality considered hazardous. That’s when air quality reached “emergency conditions”. I mean there’s more Maroon on the air quality index. Worst part is also more than ever before.

The country had been also making progress in cleaning up air pollution. However and during the Trump administration, it has been backsliding, the report says. Deregulation and climate change are also largely to blame.

So President Donald Trump made a pledge in his 2017 State of the Union address to “promote clean air and water”. Although his administration has reversed or proposed rollbacks to major air pollution protections. As well as emissions standards and drilling and extraction regulations. He’s also slashed the EPA budget. Because the current proposal is to cut the budget by a third.

Yet as the London Times reports it affects your memory.

A study of 34,000 people found a significant difference in memory quality between those who breathed the dirtiest and cleanest airA study of 34,000 people found a significant difference in memory quality. Especially between those who breathed the dirtiest and cleanest air!

Living in an area with high air pollution worsens your memory. I mean to the same extent as aging ten years, research suggests.

Because a study of 34,000 people across England found. It stating a significant difference in memory quality as a result between those who breathed the dirtiest and cleanest air.

The study looked at levels of nitrogen dioxide and a type of particulate pollution called PM10, which comes from exhaust fumes and other sources. The association with memory was evident once people reached their thirties.

In addition and as the World Health Organization adds:

Ambient (outdoor air pollution) is a major cause of death and disease globally. The health effects range from increased hospital admissions and emergency room visits, to increased risk of premature death. 

An estimated 4.2 million premature deaths globally are linked to ambient air pollution. This is mainly from heart disease, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer, and acute respiratory infections in children.

Worldwide ambient air pollution accounts for:

Pollutants with the strongest evidence for public health concern, include particulate matter (PM), ozone (O3), nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and sulphur dioxide (SO2). 

The health risks associated with particulate matter of less than 10 and 2.5 microns in diameter (PM10 and PM2.5) are especially well documented. PM is capable of penetrating deep into lung passageways. It’s also entering the bloodstream causing cardiovascular, cerebrovascular and respiratory impacts.

Also in 2013, it was classified as a cause of lung cancer by WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). Furthermore, it is also the most widely used indicator to assess the health effects. All from exposure to ambient air pollution. 

In children and adults, both short- and long-term exposure to ambient air pollution can lead to reduced lung function, respiratory infections and aggravated asthma. Maternal exposure to ambient air pollution is associated with adverse birth outcomes, such as low birth weight, pre-term birth and small gestational age births. Emerging evidence also suggests ambient air pollution may affect diabetes and neurological development in children. Considering the precise death and disability toll from many of the conditions mentioned are not currently quantified in current estimates, with growing evidence, the burden of disease from ambient air pollution is expected to greatly increase.

Even the National Institute on Health adds:

Poor air quality can make it hard to breathe—and it may take a few days for your body to recover. One type of air pollution is the fine particles (2.5 micrometers in diameter or less) from factories, power plants, and car exhaust. Another significant type is ozone, the main ingredient of urban smog. When you breathe in high levels of fine particles or ozone, your lungs can become irritated. Outdoor air pollution has been associated with asthma, heart attacks, strokes, and cancers.

Studies have shown an association between long-term exposure to air pollution and premature death. Public policies have helped to improve air quality in the United States and elsewhere. Experts periodically examine scientific analyses of air pollution levels and death and disease rates to reassess air quality standards.

A research team led by Dr. Francesca Dominici at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health set out to estimate the risk of death in older adults from short-term exposures to air pollution. The team also investigated certain subgroups of the population. That’s to be sure those subgroups were or weren’t particularly vulnerable. The study was also supported by NIH’s National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS). Finally, results appeared in JAMA on December 26, 2017.

The team used air pollution prediction models and artificial neural networks. All to estimate daily air pollution levels for more than 39,000 zip codes. That’s even in unmonitored rural areas of the country. They then looked at pollution levels around the days of death for 22 million adults. These adults were aged 65 and older based on death records from 2000 to 2012. The air pollution levels on the days of death (for 22 million deaths) were compared with pollution levels during other days (76 million control days).

So the researchers found that when air pollution from either fine particles or ozone increased intermittently. In addition, there was a substantial increase in deaths within a 2-day period. Each intermittent therefore or incremental increase of either 10 micrograms of fine particles per cubic meter did something. I mean as well as 10 parts per billion of ozone was associated with a rise in deaths.

The large dataset also enabled the research team to study effects by age, sex, race, age, and income level. Those most at risk of death associated with air pollution were over 85 years old. In addition female, nonwhite and or economically disadvantaged.

Therefore, experts can use the results. All from studies of air pollution. Then they can assess air quality standards. Especially though whether they are sufficient to protect public health.

—by Geri Piazza

%d bloggers like this: