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Pollution

  • Texas blocks new EPA ruling

    After the new Cross-State Pollution rule by the EPA was passed at the end of 2011, some power companies were worried about the effect it would have on their ability to produce. This concern was borne out of the potential cost and time it would take to fit these plants with the proper filters for reducing the emissions to a safe level under the new guidelines.

    As a result of this worry, many Texas-based power companies asked for the date of implementation to be pushed back from January 1st of 2012. When this was denied by the EPA, these companies took it a step further. A D.C. circuit court granted the request that the EPA wouldn't, effectively stopping this new law.

    This means that until the hearing in the spring, the old laws for governing emissions will remain while investigators for both the court and the EPA take another look at the law to find the places where it can be improved as well as which aspects would cause the cited 'irreparable harm' that many power companies claim it will cause.

    Until new legislation is passed, emissions are expected to remain high. If you'd like to remove that pollution from your breathing air, consider investing in a medical-grade home air purifier to keep the air in your home clean and healthy for you and your family.

  • How traffic jams affect air quality

    The personal automobile is the single greatest polluter in most urban areas, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. While the emissions from a single vehicle are minute, every pollutant produced can add up to create the hazy blanket traditionally pictured in urban environments that see heavy traffic flow.

    Emission production increases during traffic jams - often to an unhealthy level. The constant acceleration and braking in stop-and-go traffic burns fuel at a faster rate, resulting in a greater rate of emissions being released at one centralized location. Vehicle exhaust negatively impacts air quality by adding hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, according to the EPA.

    Homes located near roadways that frequently suffer negative traffic conditions may wish to invest in a professional-grade air purifier.

    This type of chemical cocktail can negatively impact human health. High levels of nitrogen oxide are toxic, and carbon dioxide works to create an insulating barrier from the sun resulting in a build up of ozone that impairs lung function. The IQAir® GC MultiGas air purifier can clear the home of a wide variety of pollutants - a potentially worthwhile investment for individuals living near heavy traffic.

  • LA pollution control agency increases rebate for gas log

    Rebate increases for gas log range from $125 to $200 by the Air Quality Management District, according to the LA Times. The rebates are available through the Healthy Hearths initiative launched by AQMD in 2008.

    The rebate was created in order to entice consumers to consider changing their existing wood-burning fireplaces to fake log sets fueled by natural gas. This has been proven to radically reduce the production of fine particulates that can have a negative effect on health.

    Combining the switch with an investment in quality, home air purifiers may be enough to reduce the particulates in the home. The exposure to PM2.5 can elevate the risk of premature death from heart disease in older adults and the likelihood of strokes in post-menopausal women.

    Other potential medical conditions may include the aggravation of respiratory illnesses, such as asthma and bronchitis. For those interested in obtaining a rebate, it does work on a first-come, first-serve basis and there is a limited amount of funds available. Homeowners may wish to consider checking out the potential changes sooner rather than later.

  • Kennecott Utah Copper accused of violating Clean Air Act

    A lobbyist group made up of mothers and doctors is suing Kennecott Utah Copper over mining dust pollution that they claim violates the United States Clean Air Act. The group is blaming the company, which mines one of the largest pits in the world, of contributing up to one-third of Salt Lake County's pollution.

    The company responded to the claims by saying the accusations are without merit, according to the Huffington Post.

    "Kennecott has and continues to operate within the parameters of its air permits and is consistently in compliance with U.S. EPA and Utah Division of Air Quality regulations, which are based on strict standards for protecting human health," the company said.

    Utah's chief air regulator did acknowledge that the company has been violating a 1994 Environmental and Protection Act law that limited the company to hauling only 150 million tons of ore a year. However, the state has allowed Kennecott to mine as much as 260 million tons most recently.

    Medical-grade air purifiers may assist in keeping indoor spaces free of the pollutants named in the suit.

  • Air pollution linked to diabetes

    Two studies in the past year, one in the United States, the other in Germany, found evidence that suggests high rates of tiny-particle air pollution may be linked to rising rates of diabetes.

    Some doctors believe the evidence points to a rise in "the exploding pandemic, if you will, of type 2 diabetes, particularly in urbanized areas around the world," Sanjay Rajagopalan of the Ohio State University College of Medicine in Columbus, told USNews.

    In the study, the mice living in an environment with clean, filtered air remained healthy. In contrast, those that experienced real world air suffered insulin resistance and were more likely to develop belly fat and other classic prediabetic symptoms. Other metabolic diseases were also found in high quantities in subjects who were treated with "city" air.

    Air pollution is consistently being found to have potential negative effects on the health of both humans and animals. Long-term exposure to particles over time may increase a person's chance of developing the disease. Investing in medical-grade air purifiers may help remove these pollutants from the home.

  • Fire place soot damaging air quality

    Levels of soot and debris have Clovis and Fresno's air quality over twice the federal health limit. The unusual weather and high levels of pollution production are combining to create a dark haze of nasty pollution.

    "We would love to have clear, healthy air and allow people to choose when they want to burn," said district spokeswoman Jaime Holt. "But we have a soup of pollution out there."

    Homes in the area may wish to invest in medical-grade air purifiers to assist in protecting them from inhaling the poor-quality air. The elderly, children and those with respiratory issues are especially impacted. At times, the pollution has reached unhealthy levels for adults as well.

    Despite daily no-burn order from authorities, people are still lighting fires in order to keep warm during the winter season. This, combined with diesel exhaust and chemical droplets, is creating a dark cloud of pollution across the valley.

    By investing in home air purifiers, people may be better able to avoid inhaling such high levels of toxins during all hours of the day.

  • Clean air advocates celebrate small victory, have a long road ahead

    Clean air laws have always been a battle between those who believe that healthy air is the most important direction we can take, and those who worry that the costs of implementing these changes would be more than the economy and taxpayers could handle.

    Clean air advocates have had cause to celebrate in recent months, as the Environmental Protection Agency's improved emission standards won them a significant victory in the fight against air pollution. The new guidelines, which are supposed to significantly improve the air and the quality of life throughout the country, focus largely on the few remaining factories that have been running unrestricted for decades, spewing toxins into the air with no filters.

    Still, the battle for clean air is still being fought, as this victory has managed to distract the heavy loss from earlier in the year when new smog control laws for heavily polluted areas were rejected.

    As the government plays back and forth on which pollutants to limit and which to allow to continue, you can keep your home safe from the danger these toxins may cause by investing in a medical-grade air purifier.

  • Air pollution in wake of BP oil spill equaled levels seen only in a 'large city's'

    Air pollution levels off the coast of Louisiana reached levels typically only seen in large cities in the wake of the 2010 BP oil spill, according to a new report by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

    Researchers tested air-borne zone and particulate matter, which are proven to have direct effects on human health, and found that about 8 percent of every 13 spilled barrels made it to the ocean's surface and evaporated into airborne particles small enough to be inhaled.

    "It was like having a large city's worth of pollution appear out in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico," said Daniel Murphy, a NOAA scientist and co-author of the report.

    As a result, there were increased levels of respiratory problems across the gulf region. Homeowners may wish to consider investing in a IQAir HealthPro Plus air purifier to ward off prolonged exposure to toxins such as these.

    The report states that as the oil evaporated, it put 10 times more organic particles in the air than the burning did, and that areas as far as 50 miles inland suffered from the degraded air quality. The BP Deepwater Horizon spill may have lasting health and ecological effects.

  • New Year's Eve air quality advisory issued due to smoke levels

    The Clark Country Department of Air Quality and Environmental Management (DAQEM) in Nevada is issuing an air quality advisory from December 31 through January 1.

    The DAQEM believes that smoke caused from New Year's fireworks, combined with weather conditions, may create a potential problem by worsening respiratory diseases. Homes in the area with children or adults who suffer from chronic asthma or respiratory illness may wish to consider investing in medical-grade air purifiers to filter out average or unusual levels of irritants.

    The predicted cold weather and lack of wind may cause smoke and dust from fireworks to remain at a low elevation, according to the DAQEM. These conditions could allow traditional celebratory events to produce unhealthy levels of smoke that will not dissipate at the usual rate. Using air purifiers and staying inside should provide the necessary safety precautions to prevent smoke levels from creating havoc with respiratory functions for those afflicted with asthma or bronchitis.

    Children and the elderly are especially susceptible to the negative effects of exposure to smoke, and should remain inside.

  • While nation focuses on EPA changes, California has emission debates of its own

    Much of the coverage concerning air pollution in America these past few weeks has focused on the controversial new EPA regulations concerning coal-burning power plants, but there have been more local efforts to clean the air as well.

    Updated in 2010, the new emission-reducing regulations required by the California Air Resources Board are slated to go into effect on January 1st, 2012. These restrictions, which are aimed at diesel-producing trucking companies, are being attacked with renewed vigor as the deadline approaches.

    Due to pressure from worried business owners, who cite the expense of such a change as a concern, the CARB has allowed for some leeway in the rule, causing mixed responses from the public. California is notoriously poor when it comes to air pollution, and proponents of these restrictions may see this backing off as a sign that nothing has changed.

    Still, the diesel particle emissions can be something of a health hazard, regardless of tightening restrictions. Consider investing in a medical-grade air purifier to help keep the air in your home healthy and clean.

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