Air Pollution and Human Health: Current Progress, Challenges and Future Prospects

A special issue of Atmosphere (ISSN 2073-4433). This special issue belongs to the section "Air Quality and Human Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2021) | Viewed by 11313

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Women's & Reproductive Health, University of Oxford, Oxford OX3 9DU, UK
Interests: environmental health; air quality; noise pollution; exposure assessment; novel statistical methodologies; big data; epidemiology

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Guest Editor
Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research (IDAEA), Spanish Research Council (CSIC), 08034 Barcelona, Spain
Interests: air quality; urban pollution; atmospheric aerosols; chemical characterization and source apportionment of aerosols; ultrafine particles; carbonaceous aerosols

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Both ambient and indoor air pollution pose a great threat to human health, with some of the most disadvantaged groups in our global community being disproportionately affected. In high-income countries, adverse health effects have been reported even at a relatively low level of ambient air pollution, and indoor air quality is impacted by radon, second-hand smoke, mold, and other types of exposure (e.g., biomass use for heating). In most low- and middle-income countries, the ambient air remains severely polluted and a significant proportion of the population relies heavily on polluting fuels for cooking and heating. One major challenge is to characterize the sources and toxicity of air pollution in terms of its health impact. Another challenge is to analyze the interactions of air pollution with other common exposures, such as noise, individual-level socioeconomic status, and climate change.

This Special Issue welcomes the submission of original research articles, reviews, and short communications targeting any of these core research questions in relation to air pollution and human health. Research papers on novel exposure assessment methods and advanced statistical techniques for understanding air pollution mixtures are also welcome. We would particularly welcome submissions from researchers based in low- and middle-income countries, as we aim to disseminate their research insights.

Dr. Samuel Yutong Cai
Dr. Andrés Alastuey Urós
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • air pollution
  • household air pollution
  • health
  • morbidity
  • mortality
  • exposure assessment
  • statistical methods
  • environmental justice
  • climate change

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

9 pages, 479 KiB  
Article
The Effects of Climate Therapy on Cardiorespiratory Fitness and Exercise-Induced Bronchoconstriction in Children with Asthma
by Carlo De Pieri, Michele Arigliani, Maria Pia Francescato, Maurizio Droli, Michael Vidoni, Ilaria Liguoro, Maria Elena Ferrari, Paola Cogo and Mario Canciano Canciani
Atmosphere 2021, 12(11), 1486; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos12111486 - 10 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1727
Abstract
We investigated whether a 1-week stay in the mountains may have a positive impact on Exercise-Induced Bronchoconstriction (EIB) and cardiorespiratory endurance in asthmatic children from an urban area. Spirometry was performed before and 10 min after a 20 m shuttle run test (20mSRT) [...] Read more.
We investigated whether a 1-week stay in the mountains may have a positive impact on Exercise-Induced Bronchoconstriction (EIB) and cardiorespiratory endurance in asthmatic children from an urban area. Spirometry was performed before and 10 min after a 20 m shuttle run test (20mSRT) on the first and seventh day of a summer asthma camp in the Italian Alps at 900 m of altitude. Spirometry z-scores were derived from the Global Lung Initiative 2012 prediction equations, and percentiles of the 20mSRT performance were assigned according to De Miguel-Etayo’s and Tomkinson’s predictive equations. A FEV1 decrease ≥10% after the exercise was defined as EIB. Particulate matter pollution was monitored during the camp and in the urban area of provenience. Twenty-four subjects (age range 7–16 years) were included. Frequency of EIB decreased from 58% (14/24) at day-1 to 33% (8/24) at the end of the camp (p = 0.08). Most subjects with a 20mSRT in the lowest quartile at day 1 had EIB (9/11). The proportion of children with a 20mSRT <25° percentile decreased from 45% (11/24) at day-1 to 16% (4/24) at day-7 (p = 0.02). Conclusion: One-week climate therapy in the mountains improved both bronchial hyperreactivity and cardiorespiratory endurance in our cohort of asthmatic children. Full article
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27 pages, 1088 KiB  
Article
Valuation of Local Demand for Improved Air Quality: The Case of the Mae Moh Coal Mine Site in Thailand
by Worawat Srisawasdi, Takuji W. Tsusaka, Ekbordin Winijkul and Nophea Sasaki
Atmosphere 2021, 12(9), 1132; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos12091132 - 2 Sep 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 4488
Abstract
While the district of Mae Moh, Thailand has been well known for its atmospheric pollution associated with coal power production, economic assessment of demand for improved air quality has not been conducted to date. This study estimated local residents’ individual and aggregate willingness [...] Read more.
While the district of Mae Moh, Thailand has been well known for its atmospheric pollution associated with coal power production, economic assessment of demand for improved air quality has not been conducted to date. This study estimated local residents’ individual and aggregate willingness to pay (WTP) for mitigation of atmospheric pollution in Mae Moh using the contingent valuation method (CVM), and analyzed the factors associated with the individual WTP using the bivariate tobit and double-hurdle regression techniques. Primary data were collected through face-to-face interviews with a stratified sample of 200 residents. The hypothetical scenarios used in the CVM module were 50% and 80% mitigation of atmospheric concentrations of major pollutants. The weighted average WTP was found to be THB 251.3 and 307.9 per annum (USD 8.4 and 10.3) for the 50% and 80% reduction scenarios, respectively. The aggregate WTP for the entire population of Mae Moh was THB 10,008,733 and 12,264,761 per annum (USD 336,294 and 412,096), respectively. Education, occupation type, income, expenses, satisfaction with ambient quality, and perceived sources of pollution had significant associations with the individual WTP. The paper concludes by discussing policy implications for atmospheric pollution management and avenues for future research. Full article
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19 pages, 2227 KiB  
Article
Measurements of NOx and Development of Land Use Regression Models in an East-African City
by Asmamaw Abera, Ebba Malmqvist, Yumjirmaa Mandakh, Erin Flanagan, Michael Jerrett, Geremew Sahilu Gebrie, Abebe Genetu Bayih, Abraham Aseffa, Christina Isaxon and Kristoffer Mattisson
Atmosphere 2021, 12(4), 519; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos12040519 - 19 Apr 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 4194
Abstract
Air pollution causes premature mortality and morbidity globally, but these adverse health effects occur over proportionately in low- and middle-income countries. Lack of both air pollution data and knowledge of its spatial distribution in African countries have been suggested to lead to an [...] Read more.
Air pollution causes premature mortality and morbidity globally, but these adverse health effects occur over proportionately in low- and middle-income countries. Lack of both air pollution data and knowledge of its spatial distribution in African countries have been suggested to lead to an underestimation of health effects from air pollution. This study aims to measure nitrogen oxides (NOx), as well as nitrogen dioxide (NO2), to develop Land Use Regression (LUR) models in the city of Adama, Ethiopia. NOx and NO2 was measured at over 40 sites during six days in both the wet and dry seasons. Throughout the city, measured mean levels of NOx and NO2 were 29.0 µg/m3 and 13.1 µg/m3, respectively. The developed LUR models explained 68% of the NOx variances and 75% of the NO2. Both models included similar geographical predictor variables (related to roads, industries, and transportation administration areas) as those included in prior LUR models. The models were validated by using leave-one-out cross-validation and tested for spatial autocorrelation and multicollinearity. The performance of the models was good, and they are feasible to use to predict variance in annual average NOx and NO2 concentrations. The models developed will be used in future epidemiological and health impact assessment studies. Such studies may potentially support mitigation action and improve public health. Full article
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