Air Quality

Air Pollution and Brain Health

April 10, 2020

What is Air Pollution? What is the evidence linking air pollution to adverse effects on the brain? How does air pollution alter brain development and brain function? These are just a few of the questions answered in the publication "Air Pollution and Brain Health" by Professor of Neurotoxicology Dr. Pamela Lein and Distinguished Professor Dr. Anthony Wexler of UC Davis.

COVID-19 death rates increase due to long-term exposure to PM2.5

April 07, 2020

More and more we are seeing results from recent studies showing a correlation between higher COVID-19 death rates and people who live in air pollution riddled areas. Both in Italy and the United States, people that reside in areas with higher concentrations of PM2.5 in the atmosphere are at least 12% more likely to not survive a bout with COVID-19. These findings are consistent with the findings from the 2002-2003 SARS outbreak that claimed 349 lives in China. 

How would the air quality change if electric cars were the norm?

March 31, 2020

With the coronavirus spreading and stay-at-home orders becoming more prevalent we are seeing a drop in emissions resulting in better air quality. People around the US and the World are reporting being able to see further across cities and to hills or mountains. 

Coronavirus pandemic leading to huge drop in air pollution

March 25, 2020

COVID-19 was declared a pandemic earlier this month causing industries across the world to shutdown and workers to stay home to avoid further contamination and spreading of the virus. This emergency shutdown has lead to lower air pollution levels around the world. 

Experts are saying that this societal shutdown is creating one of the largest experiments in industrial emission reduction. NO2 levels over cities and industrial areas have decreased significantly in comparison to this same time in 2019. 

University of Leicester air pollution professor, Paul Monks, stated 

Air Pollution Toxicology: My Struggle for Realistic Exposures

The link between air pollution exposure and its health effects is uncovered by epidemiologists and toxicologists working in concert. Epidemiologists investigate statistical associations between air pollution exposure and morbidity and mortality.

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"The bigger story is climate change"

December 12, 2019

Air Quality Research Center Director, Tony Wexler, spoke with Mark Kaufman of Mashable about the smoke and poor air quality in Sydney from the Australia fires. Sydney's pollution levels were more than 11 times the hazardous level. 

In his article, Sydney, engulfed in smoke, has a ghastly air quality problem, Kaufman shares:

PM 2.5 increased by 5.5% in 2 years across the country after a 7 year decrease of 25%

October 28, 2019

The New York Times writer, Nadja Popovich, reports that after nearly a decade of improving the air quality nationally, the US EPA's data shows that PM 2.5 has increased in the past two years. This 180 turn of progress has been identified as likely primarily coming from increases in driving and the burning of natural gas. However, in the West, wildfires has been a large cause of the increase as well. Researchers suggest that due to a decrease of enforcement of the Clean Air Act, less businesses are concerned with their pollution. 

Understanding the health risks from the smoke and ash of Butte County's Camp Fire

August 12, 2019

In Paradise, many families are still combing through the wreckage of the 2018 Camp Fire that burned over 150,000 acres. Camille Von Kaenel of the Chico Enterprise-Record in her article "Residents still trying to understand Camp Fire contamination at standing homes" writes,