Lecture 6

Lecture 6 - Air Pollution: Human Health Effects 1 Readings...

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Air Pollution: Human Health Effects 1
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eadings for Today Readings for Today oursepack: Basic Environmental Health Coursepack: Basic Environmental Health “Air” 2
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utline Outline hat is a health effect? What is a health effect? • Dose-effect and dose-response curves ollutants in air and their effects on humans Pollutants in air and their effects on humans • Key studies linking long term exposure and ealth outcomes in populations: need to health outcomes in populations: need to understand idea of cohort and relative risk •D oes improved air quality lead to better health? oes p o ed a qua ty ead to bette ea t 3
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hat is a Health Effect? What is a Health Effect? amage to health that an environmental Damage to health that an environmental hazard can cause in an individual here hazard is understood to mean “a • Where hazard is understood to mean a factor or exposure that may adversely ffect health” (Last 1995) affect health (Last 1995) 4
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Pollutants and effects… Pollutant Description Health Effects Ozone Main component of smog, rmed in presence of sunlight Irritation of eyes, nose, roat impairment of normal formed in presence of sunlight with VOC and NOx throat, impairment of normal lung function, exacerbates asthma Carbon Another smog component, by- Weakens heart contractions; monoxide product of fossil fuel combustion, cigarette smoke, traffic reduces oxygen available to body; affects mental function, alertness articles Soot, dust, smoke, fumes, ash, Respiratory and lung Particles ,, , , , mist, sprays, aerosols, cigarette smoke, industry, traffic py g damage; cancer; exacerbates respiratory and cardiovascular disease mog component by roduct of creases acute and chronic Sulphur dioxide Smog component, by-product of burning coal, oil, other industrial processes; reacts in air to form acid precipitation Increases acute and chronic respiratory disease; impairs lung function, respiratory tract irritation 5 Nitrogen dioxide Smog component, by-product of combustion; reacts with sunlight with VOC to form ozone (smog) Pulmonary swelling; may aggravate chronic bronchitis, asthma and emphysema Source: Eyles, 2001
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Key Categories of Air Pollutants 4 Key Categories of Air Pollutants • Gaseous (SO , NOx, CO, Ozone, VOCs) – 2 mainly from fossil fuel combustion • Persistent Organic (dioxins) – incomplete ombustion burning of plastics ansport by combustion, burning of plastics transport by air, land on plants, enter food chain • Heavy Metals (lead, mercury) – naturally occurring, transport by air, enter water and food supply •P articulate Matter main sources are factories, a t cu ate atte a sou ces a e acto es, power plants, incinerators, cars, construction, dust 6
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How We Determine Health Effects - Epidemiological Studies •E pidemiological studies are conducted to determine potential relationships between a variety of environmental factors and human disease • Use statistical relationships between health status of populations and a variety of exposures and potentially confounding variables
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Lecture 6 - Air Pollution: Human Health Effects 1 Readings...

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