Spare the Air raises quality of life for all

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Spare the Air raises quality of life for all

Postby Wilberforce » Wed Jan 12, 2011 7:32 pm

Spare the Air raises quality of life for all

Posted: Wednesday, January 12, 2011 12:00 am

Thank you very much for your editorial to encourage residents to refrain from burning wood during the Bay Area Air Quality Management District’s recent Spare the Air alert (“Grapes and Raisins,” Jan. 6).

The regulation is critical to protect public health. Wood smoke generates tiny particles that are associated with a range of adverse respiratory health impacts, especially for children and the elderly, and those with existing chronic disease. These particles are so small, they can bypass the body’s airway defenses and enter directly into the lungs and blood stream, where they can contribute to breathing problems, heart attacks and stroke.

A study by the California Air Resources Board reported that wood smoke can cause a 10 percent increase in hospital admissions for respiratory problems among children, who are at most risk since their lungs are still developing.

The American Lung Association receives calls from distraught families from all around the Bay Area who cannot get away from smoke due to neighborhood wood-burning and whose health is hurt. It is important to note that one fireplace or wood-burning stove can produce levels of smoke in a neighborhood that exceed federal air quality standards — and affect all the neighbors. The air district’s wood-burning regulation prohibits excessive smoke every day of the year, not just on Spare the Air days.

Hopefully, with cleaner heating alternatives available, local residents will think twice before lighting their polluting fireplaces and wood-burning stoves, not just on Spare the Air days, but every day.

Jenny Bard, regional air quality director, American Lung Association / Santa Rosa

source ... 03286.html

Spare the Air raises quality of life for all ... 03286.html

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• 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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