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Air Pollution Still Threatens America's Children

Pete Altman

Posted August 24, 2011

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We need to do more to protect kids from air pollution.

Last week, USA Today reported on NRDC's findings that over 2,000 code orange alerts have been issued around the US so far this year, signaling air pollution levels that are dangerous to kids and other vulnerable populations.

The connections between high smog levels and kids health are clear. As I've previously mentioned,

A 2011 analysis reviewing nearly 100 prior ozone studies found that as smog levels rise, emergency room visits by asthmatic children also increase.

Children are among the most vulnerable because their bodies are still growing, they tend to be more active and spend more time outside – often during the afternoons when smog levels usually peak. Overall, nearly 37 million children live in areas where the air is unhealthy, according to the American Lung Association.

That kids are still not protected from air pollution is a grave concern for NRDC, which has joined with other environmental, health and public interest groups in demanding better protections to ensure our childrens' health.

We are doing so by asking members of Congress to make a promise to protect children from dangerous air pollution, a commitment that we think American families deserve from their elected representatives at a time when pollution from power plants, cement kilns and other industries and sources still pose serious threats to our health.

You can ask your own representatives to make this commitment by clicking here and using our action center to make your voice heard.

Please take a moment to take action right now.

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James Richard TyrerAug 25 2011 06:37 AM

You might be surprised to learn that the EPA does not actually regulate photochemical smog. They use Ozone as a proxy for smog, but Ozone is NOT smog. The main constituents of photochemical smog are Peroxyacyl Nitrates [PAN]. These chemicals are much more serious eye and lung irritants than Ozone. Yet, they are not listed in the Clean Air Act and the EPA has declined to regulate them.

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