New Research Indicates Air Pollution Results in 100K+ U.S. Deaths Yearly
A study by the Society for Risk Analysis has concluded that ozone, particle pollution and ultrafine particle pollution cause more premature deaths each year than automobile accidents, which was long considered the leading cause. According to the study, particulate air pollution causes at least 100,000 premature deaths in the United States alone. Ozone pollution adds tens of thousands of more deaths to that number.
The study took into account areas all around the U.S. The areas with the most severe air pollution will likely come as little surprise. Southern California, the industrial areas of the Midwest, and the majority of the Northeast had the most severe air pollution. In Los Angeles alone, the study found that at least 10 percent of all premature deaths were related to air pollution.
In addition, Los Angeles had more than 200,000 nonfatal heart attacks that were related to air pollution. The city also experienced hundreds of thousands of cases of pollution-caused bronchitis and tens of thousands of pollution-related emergency calls and hospitalizations.
The one bit of bright news from this report is that the findings were based on data from 2005. In Los Angeles and almost all of the other areas included in the study, the ozone and particulate numbers are down across the board. Much of that reduction can be attributed to increased federal and state regulations regarding the environment.
Despite that good news, the study further concluded that deaths in the year of the study publication would be in excess of 300,000. So why are pollution levels dropping but pollution-related fatalities rising? Well, the answer to that is complex and not fully known but one of the biggest issues is that concentration levels are actually up in the areas where we spend most of our time, such as at home and work.
It is important to recognize that all outdoor air pollution becomes indoor air pollution. Furthermore, since indoor environments have far less ventilation, the concentration levels are much higher. In fact, the EPA estimates that the indoor air quality of your home or office has an air pollution level that is 2-5 times higher than the level of the air outside its doors.
The EPA recommends a three-pronged approach to eliminating air pollution in the home or office. The first strategy is reduction, which means eliminating indoor sources of pollution that are exacerbating the issue. The second strategy is ventilation, which helps to limit concentration build-up. The third and most important strategy is HEPA air filtration.
HEPA Air Purification
A HEPA air purifier with a HEPA filter is one of the most effective ways to eliminate indoor air pollution. People spend the majority of their time indoors, and a HEPA air purifier can eliminate 99.97 percent of all airborne particles down to 0.3 microns in size including dust, dust mites, soot, pet dander, pollen and mold spores.
Here’s what we know: Air pollution kills, and indoor air pollution is the most concentrated kind. That’s why the reason to act is now. A portable HEPA air purifier can eradicate pollution in the home, and it can have substantial benefits for asthma and allergy sufferers.
- Administration Staff