Posts Categorized: Toxic Hot Spots

Salem Update: DEQ Air Monitoring Grant

None of us want to have to wear gas masks when we walk outside on these beautiful days.  But the problem with air pollution, especially some of the most dangerous particulate matter pollution associated with heavy diesel transportation and industrial production, is that it is nearly invisible. That is why Oregon needs to monitor.  And… Read more »

To test or not to test

We know that Oregon has high levels of naturally occurring arsenic. We also know that it is emitted by polluters: metal processing specifically contributes over 60% of the human-caused arsenic emissions according to DEQ source material for the Portland Air Toxics Solutions; it also comes from agricultural pesticides and soil dust, as well as combusted fuel from vehicles. We know it is classified as a KNOWN (Class A) human carcinogen. We know that arsenic is one of 15 air toxicants that the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality identified as being up to 10x over health-based benchmarks in the Portland Metro air shed. What we don’t know: How is this affecting my child? Are our children safe?

Revisiting The Smokestack Effect

In March 2009, I stumbled across a report on the internet published by USA Today called the Smokestack Effect.  It was a ground breaking study that cross-referenced the federal Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) data with school sitings, ranking the schools at greatest risk of cancer and non-cancer health effects due to air toxic exposures.  The… Read more »

What is in our air?

Every day driving my daughters to school I pass eastbound over the Fremont Bridge. During many of these days as we are just about to exit onto Kerby, we have to pass through a dense dark gray “fog” created by the air emissions of a regulated polluter just below the bridge.  Some days the fog… Read more »

EPA releases latest National Air Toxics Assessment

Yesterday, the Environmental Protection Agency issued its latest data on air pollution called the National Air Toxics Assessment or NATA.  NATA is designed to provide estimates of the risk of cancer and other serious health effects from breathing (inhaling) air toxics in order to inform both national and more localized efforts to identify and prioritize… Read more »