Two of the most harmful air pollutants present in the Houston area are butadiene (1,3, butadiene) and benzene. Butadiene, which is produced from burning fuels, can cause nausea, skin irritation and fatigue. The exposure to butadiene can also cause leukemia; children are especially at risk for leukemia after exposure to the pollutant.
Be aware of that the emissions from vehicular combustion and industrial processes in the Houston area release benzene.
The hazardous pollutant can cause dizziness and irritation to the respiratory system, eyes, and skin. Long-term chronic exposure to benzene can also lead to blood disorders and cancer.
Ozone, also known as smog has also been an issue in Houston’s air quality. Produced by vehicles and industry businesses, it is known to cause respiratory problems, stunt lung development, and can aggravate existing conditions of the lungs. The city is working to improve the issue of ozone through the Clean Air Act and regulatory monitors that have preliminary design values which comply with the 8-hour, 84 ppb standard.
Though the city is working to improve the air quality, there is still room for improvement. There remains a lot of work to be done to clean Houston’s air. For more information on air quality, visit the site for the Center of Houston’s Future at www.centerforhoustonsfuture.org.
By Production Assistant: Angel Hadnott
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