Study Links Reduction in Particle Air Pollution to Higher Life Expectancy
For the study, researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health compared data from 545 counties in the U.S., many of which were in California.
Fine particles come from a variety of sources, such as:
- Smokestacks; and
They also can form when gases emitted by various engines and power plants react with the atmosphere.
The particles can become lodged inÂ a person'sÂ lungs and exacerbate lung and heart disease. Individuals most at risk for inhaling the particles are:
- People who are active outdoors;
- Children; and
- Elderly individuals.
The researchers found that a drop in fine particulate matter from 2000 to 2007 corresponded with an average rise in life expectancy of .35 of one year.The study also found that reductions of fine particle air pollution had the greatest benefits for women and people living in urban areas (Boxall, Los Angeles Times, 12/6). This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.