Air Pollution Levels High Near Small Airports

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People living near small regional airports may be at risk for increased health problems due to airborne pollutants, ScienceDaily reports in an article titled, Hidden Threat: Elevated Pollution Levels Near Regional Airports.

Air pollution near major airports has been a well-known problem. But little has been studied about the effect of emissions on air quailty near smaller general aviation or regional airports, which are often located much closer to residential neighborhoods than major airports.

A new study conducted by Suzanne Paulson and colleagues measured a range of air pollutants near such an airport and found that emissions of ultrafine particles were significantly higher than background pollution levels. From the airport, pollution levels were up to 10 times higher at a downwind distance of one football field and up to 2.5 times higher six football field-lengths away. The scientists concluded that ‘current land-use practices of reduced buffer areas around local airports may be insufficient.’

For individuals living in these types of areas, an air purifier fitted with chemical-removing components, such as an activated carbon filter, are essential, especially for those suffering from Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, allergies, or asthma, or those with infants.

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