Biomass Energy in Pennsylvania

Scientific and technical articles on particle air pollution.

Biomass Energy in Pennsylvania

Postby Wilberforce » Thu Dec 13, 2012 9:17 pm

Biomass Energy in Pennsylvania: Implications for Air Quality,
Carbon Emissions, and Forests ... -12-12.pdf

Although often considered “carbon neutral,” biomass facilities emit more carbon dioxide (CO2)
per unit of energy generated than fossil fuel facilities, generating a “carbon debt.”
The American Lung Association “does not support biomass combustion for electricity
production” and “strongly opposes the combustion of wood and other biomass sources at
schools and institutions with vulnerable populations.” The Massachusetts Medical Society
opposes construction of large-scale biomass energy plants, stating that they pose an
“unacceptable risk to the public’s health.”

Despite its frequent portrayal as “clean,” biomass combustion is a major source of particulate matter,
making it of concern from a public health perspective. The effects of particulate pollution on respiratory
and cardiac health are well documented and are characterized by a linear response that extends below
the current EPA health threshold.

Nanoparticle emissions from 11 non-vehicle exhaust sources – A review ... 1012010564
Kumar, P, Pirjola, L, Ketzel, M and Harrison, RM (2013) Nanoparticle emissions from 11 non-vehicle exhaust sources – A review Atmospheric Environment, 67 . 252 - 277. ISSN 1352-2310
Some interesting comparisons emerged such as 1 kg of fast and slow wood burning produces nearly the same number of particles as for each km driven by a heavy duty vehicle (HDV) and a light duty vehicle, respectively.
• The Surgeon General has determined that there is no safe level of exposure to ambient smoke!

• If you smell even a subtle odor of smoke, you are being exposed to poisonous and carcinogenic chemical compounds!

• Even a brief exposure to smoke raises blood pressure, (no matter what your state of health) and can cause blood clotting, stroke, or heart attack in vulnerable people. Even children experience elevated blood pressure when exposed to smoke!

• Since smoke drastically weakens the lungs' immune system, avoiding smoke is one of the best ways to prevent colds, flu, bronchitis, or risk of an even more serious respiratory illness, such as pneumonia or tuberculosis! Does your child have the flu? Chances are they have been exposed to ambient smoke!
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