Breathing Easy: The impact of Air Quality on Human Health (Part 1)

October 3, 2023by Toluwanimi

The Air Share

The air we breathe is the great equalizer. It doesn’t distinguish between rich and poor, educated and uneducated. It knows no boundaries. It flows wherever it wishes, transcending socio-economic divides. However, the air we share is under siege. In this three-part series, we’ll explore the world of air quality, its impact on human health, and how Osten Laboratory plays a vital role in safeguarding the air we all breathe.

The Atmosphere’s Silent Protection

Our atmosphere is an invisible, yet robust shield that envelops Earth. It plays a multifaceted role in protecting life as we know it. It absorbs harmful solar radiation, keeps harmful ultraviolet rays at bay, regulates surface temperatures, and maintains a climate that sustains ecosystems. The atmosphere is our unsung guardian, quietly working to ensure our survival.

Air Pollution: A Silent Threat

Despite the atmosphere’s natural defenses, human-driven activities have introduced contaminants into this delicate balance. The result is air pollution, one of the most significant environmental risks to human health worldwide. It’s a silent threat that often goes unnoticed until it’s too late. Among the most harmful pollutants are fine particulate matter (PM2.5), carbon monoxide, nitrous oxides, ozone, and various non-criteria pollutants.

The Culprits and Their Impact

Air pollution doesn’t discriminate when it comes to its sources. Emissions from automobiles, electricity generation using fossil fuels, waste dumpsites, garbage incineration, and biomass burning are just a few of the culprits. They can be categorized as point sources, area sources, and mobile sources. The consequences of their actions affect us all.

In Part 2 of our series, we’ll delve deeper into the health impacts of air pollution, exploring who’s most at risk and why air quality monitoring is crucial. Join us on this journey to understanding the air we share and how it shapes our lives.