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Beware distant dust

Dust and other disturbers of air quality are traveling vast distances to affect the health of people worldwide, says a new report

Brendan Borrell
Dust storms in Africa, wild fires in Mexico, and ozone from Japanese factories can all have a negative impact on air quality and human health in other countries, including the United States and Europe, says linkurl:a new report;http://national-academies.org/morenews/20090929.html from the National Research Council.
Smokestack from a WWII production plant
Image: Wikipedia, via the Library of Congress
Wind carries pollution great distances all the time, but scientists are best able to observe the phenomenon during major weather or pollution events, including dust storms or smoke plumes visible by satellite. Although scientists do not yet have the data to quantify the impact of these events, mathematical models and correlational studies help them identify some areas of concern."The deadliest air pollutant that we are dealing with in this report are the fine particles," atmospheric chemist Charles Kolb, lead author and CEO of Aerodyne Research in Boston, told The Scientist. Currently, road dust...




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