Pollution In Texas

Texas Particle Pollution

Particle pollution levels in Texas were found to be slightly higher than in the previous year’s “State of the Air” report, which covered the entire year. Particle pollution can be very harmful or even fatal, and the report monitored temporary spikes in this type of pollution. According to the study, there were more days in Texas with unhealthy levels of short-term particle pollution.

According to a report released this year, more than four out of ten people (135 million) in the United States were exposed to unhealthy levels of air pollution. The health of Texans was compromised due to pollution, especially that of the elderly, the young, and those with respiratory illnesses. The report also shows that minorities are three times as likely to reside in an area that received a failing grade for air quality and are 61% more likely to live in a county with unhealthy air compared to whites. The air quality has gotten worse and is harder to clean up due to climate change, the report finds.

What’s the big deal here?

Exposure to polluted air has been linked to health issues like the heart and lungs, and even early death. Small, fine particles of pollution from sources like car exhaust or power plants can enter the bloodstream and cause serious health problems, while larger particles of pollution can irritate the respiratory system and cause discomfort. Particles in the air can be transported from one location to another, further damaging the environment. Increasing acidification of lakes and streams and altered soil nutrient patterns are two such examples.

Decreased lung function is just one of many respiratory and cardiovascular issues that have been linked to exposure to fine particle air pollution, such as that produced by wildfires.

  • Asthma
  • Abnormal heart rhythm.
  • Infarction of the heart.
  • Heart disease and lung disease are major causes of premature death.

It was estimated that 107,000 unnecessary deaths in 2011 were caused by fine particulate matter air pollution due to human activity. An identical study calculated a societal loss of $886 billion. The cost and benefits of federal regulations are tracked and reported by the United States Office of Management and Budget (OMB). The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) calculated that the United States economy reaped between $157 billion and $777 billion (in 2010 dollars) in benefits from the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) regulations issued between 2004 and 2014 to limit air pollution, primarily by lowering the health risks associated with exposure to fine particulate matter.

Who Is Affected?

Air pollution poses a greater threat to the health of the following groups than to others:

  • Pollution’s effects are magnified for people who already have heart or respiratory problems.
  • A higher percentage of elderly people are admitted to hospitals when air pollution is high.
  • Because of their still-forming lungs, their high activity levels, and the prevalence of asthma, children are at a greater risk of suffering from the effects of air pollution.
  • Decreased life expectancy and increased visits to the neonatal intensive care unit have both been linked to elevated levels of particulate pollution in areas where pollution is more common than adults.
  • It has been shown that some groups are disproportionately affected by air pollution:
  • Adults in urban settings versus their rural counterparts.

Air pollution exposure is higher among people of colour, and this is especially true in more segregated communities. Individual factors, such as race and income, were found to be less important in explaining exposure to air pollution than neighbourhood characteristics, such as the racial composition of the neighbourhood and the degree of residential segregation. It was also discovered that non-white people were exposed to much higher levels of nitrous oxide emissions than white people.

What Works?

Reduced air pollution would have a major positive impact on public health. Reducing air pollution by fine particles has been linked to a decrease in the risk of dying from lung cancer, cardiovascular disease, and other causes. Between 1990 and 2020, the Clean Air Act is expected to avert 200,000 cardiovascular events, 2.4 million asthma episodes, and 17 million workdays lost, according to the EPA.

Though air pollution has been greatly mitigated over the past four decades thanks to the implementation of stricter air quality standards and other environmentally protective policies, the problem is still acute in some regions. Some of the progress made over the past 50 years has been eroded by recent actions, such as the replacement of scientists on the EPA’s advisory groups with industry consultants. As a result, scientists now have a more challenging time providing the EPA with advice based on their expertise.

Goals

A major goal of Healthy People 2030 is to reduce the duration of time people spend breathing polluted air. Additionally, we hope to see more people taking public transportation and other forms of alternative transportation to work.