[cleanairuk_news] Health Effects of Air Quality and Noise - update January 2014

Network for Clean Air contact at cleanairuk.org
Tue Feb 4 15:08:35 GMT 2014


* Health Effects of Air Quality and Noise - update January 2014 *

By Barbara Rimmington, Researcher, East End Quality of Life Initiative

(Previous edition - December 2013:
http://cleanairuk.org/pipermail/news_cleanairuk.org/2013-December/000063.html)

*CONTENTS*

1) Long term exposure to ambient air pollution and incidence of acute  
coronary events: prospective cohort study and meta-analysis in 11  
European cohorts from the ESCAPE Project

2) Particulate air pollution and susceptibility to the development of  
pulmonary tuberculosis disease in North Carolina: an ecological study

3) Effects of Ambient Particulate Matter on Human Breast Cancer: Is  
Xenogenesis Responsible?

4) Air pollution and congenital heart defects

5) DNA Hypomethylation, Ambient Particulate Matter, and Increased  
Blood Pressure: Findings From Controlled Human Exposure Experiments

6) Review of air pollution and health impacts in Malaysia

7) Air pollution ‘major cause of death’ in all London boroughs

8) Green economy thinking and the control of nitrous oxide emissions

9) Clearing the air over Europe, and elsewhere

10) Factors influencing modal split of commuting journeys in  
medium-size European cities

11) Air Pollution and Preterm Premature Rupture of Membranes: A  
Spatiotemporal Analysis

12) Associations Between Short-term Changes in Air Pollution and  
Correlates of Arterial Stiffness: The Veterans Affairs Normative Aging  
Study, 2007–2011

13) Addressing the Burden of Disease Attributable to Air Pollution in  
India: The Need to Integrate across Household and Ambient Air  
Pollution Exposures

14) Air Pollution and Respiratory Infections during Early Childhood:  
An Analysis of 10 European Birth Cohorts within the ESCAPE Project

15) Evaluating Multipollutant Exposure and Urban Air Quality:  
Pollutant Interrelationships, Neighborhood Variability, and Nitrogen  
Dioxide as a Proxy Pollutant

16) Air Pollution Exposures During Adulthood and Risk of Endometriosis  
in the Nurses’ Health Study II

17) Long-Term Exposure to Concentrated Ambient PM2.5 Increases Mouse  
Blood Pressure through Abnormal Activation of the Sympathetic Nervous  
System: A Role for Hypothalamic Inflammation

18) Diesel exhaust particulate increases the size and complexity of  
lesions in atherosclerotic mice

19) Cardiovascular Depression in Rats Exposed to Inhaled Particulate  
Matter and Ozone: Effects of Diet-Induced Metabolic Syndrome

20) Air Pollution–Mediated Susceptibility to Inflammation and Insulin  
Resistance: Influence of CCR2 Pathways in Mice

21) Fine Particulate Matter (PM2.5) in the United Kingdom

22) The burden of air pollution on years of life lost in Beijing,  
China, 2004-08: retrospective regression analysis of daily deaths

23) China tackles the health effects of air pollution

24) Fine Particulate Matter and Risk of Preterm Birth in Connecticut  
in 2000–2006: A Longitudinal Study

25) Editorial: The year of air

26) Energy, climate and air quality policy synergies

27) Roadmap for less-polluting vehicles

28) Air pollution levels still much too high

29) M1 Junctions 32-35a: Smart Motorway

30) Immersive virtual reality and environmental noise assessment: An  
innovative audio–visual approach

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1) Long term exposure to ambient air pollution and incidence of acute  
coronary events: prospective cohort study and meta-analysis in 11  
European cohorts from the ESCAPE Project

Giulia Cesaroni, Francesco Forastiere, Massimo Stafoggia, Zorana J  
Andersen, Chiara Badaloni, Rob Beelen, Barbara Caracciolo, Ulf de  
Faire, Raimund Erbel, Kirsten T Eriksen, Laura Fratiglioni, Claudia  
Galassi, Regina Hampel, Margit Heier, Frauke Hennig, Agneta Hilding,  
Barbara Hoffmann, Danny Houthuijs, Karl-Heinz Jöckel, Michal Korek,  
Timo Lanki, Karin Leander, Patrik K E Magnusson, Enrica Migliore,  
Caes-Göran Ostenson, Kim Overvad, Nancy L Pedersen, Juha Pekkanen J,  
Johanna Penell, Göran Pershagen, Andrei Pyko, Ole Raaschou-Nielsen,  
Andrea Ranzi, Fulvio Ricceri, Carlotta Sacerdote, Veikko Salomaa, Wim  
Swart, Anu W Turunen, Paolo Vineis, Gudrun Weinmayr, Kathrin Wolf,  
Kees de Hoogh, Gerard Hoek, Bert Brunekreef, Annette Peters

Long term exposure to particulate matter is associated with incidence  
of coronary events, and this association persists at levels of  
exposure below the current European limit values.

BMJ 2014;348:f7412 - read article (http://www.bmj.com/content/348/bmj.f7412)

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2) Particulate air pollution and susceptibility to the development of  
pulmonary tuberculosis disease in North Carolina: an ecological study

Genee S. Smith, Victor J. Schoenbach, David B. Richardson, Marilie D. Gammon

Results suggest a potential association between long-term exposure to  
particulate matter (PM) and PTB (pulmonary tuberculosis) disease. In  
view of the high levels of air pollution and high rates of PTB  
worldwide, a potential association between ambient air pollution and  
tuberculosis warrants further study.

International Journal of Environmental Health Research 24,2, 2014,  
103-112 - read abstract  
(http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09603123.2013.800959#.Ut-dstLFLGh)

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3) Effects of Ambient Particulate Matter on Human Breast Cancer: Is  
Xenogenesis Responsible?

Qiang Huo, Ning Zhang, Xiaolong Wang, Liyu Jiang, Tingting Ma, Qifeng Yang

Our findings and clinical data indicate that long-term air pollution  
exposure may contribute to the development of breast cancer by playing  
the role of a xenoestrogen, and also provides new insight into the  
association between air pollution and the morbidity and mortality of  
breast cancer patients. Furthermore, it is urgently necessary to study  
the association between air pollution and breast cancer to improve the  
living quality and health of females, and applicable public health  
strategies may need to be established or modified as soon as possible.

PLoS ONE 8(10): e76609. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0076609 - read  
article  
(http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0076609)

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4) Air pollution and congenital heart defects

Keren Agay-Shay, Michael Friger, Shai Linn, Ammatzia Peled, Yona  
Amitai, Chava Peretz

We found that maternal exposure to increased concentrations of PM10  
was associated with multiple congenital heart defects (adjusted OR  
1.05, 95% CI: 1.01 to 1.10 for 10 μg/m3 increment). An inverse  
association was observed between concentrations of PM2.5 and isolated  
patent ductus arteriosus (adjusted OR 0.78, 95% CI: 0.68 to 0.91 for 5  
µg/m3 increment). Sensitivity analyses showed that results were  
consistent. Generally there were no evidence for an association  
between gaseous air pollutants and congenital heart defects.Our  
results for PM10 and congenital heart defects confirm results from  
previous studies. The results for PM2.5 need further investigations.

Environmental Research 124, July 2013, 28–34 - read abstract  
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0013935113000649)

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5) DNA Hypomethylation, Ambient Particulate Matter, and Increased  
Blood Pressure: Findings From Controlled Human Exposure Experiments

Andrea Bellavia, Bruce Urch, Mary Speck, Robert D. Brook, Jeremy A.  
Scott, Benedetta Albetti, Behrooz Behbod, Michelle North, Linda  
Valeri, Pier Alberto Bertazzi, Frances Silverman, Diane Gold, Andrea  
A. Baccarelli

Our findings provide novel evidence of effects of coarse PM on BP and  
confirm effects of fine PM. Our results provide the first experimental  
evidence of PM‐induced DNA hypomethylation and its correlation to BP.

J Am Heart Assoc. 2013; 2: e000212 originally published June 19, 2013,  
doi: 10.1161/​JAHA.113.000212 - read article  
(http://jaha.ahajournals.org/content/2/3/e000212.full)

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6) Review of air pollution and health impacts in Malaysia

Rafia Afroz, Mohd Nasir Hassan, Noor Akma Ibrahim

The results of the monitoring indicate that Suspended Particulate  
Matter (SPM) and Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) are the predominant  
pollutants. Other pollutants such as CO, Ox, SO2, and Pb are also  
observed in several big cities in Malaysia. The air pollution comes  
mainly from land transportation, industrial emissions, and open  
burning sources. Among them, land transportation contributes the most  
to air pollution. This paper reviews the results of the ambient air  
quality monitoring and studies related to air pollution and health  
impacts.

Environmental Research 92,2 June 2003, 71–77 - read abstract  
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0013935102000592)

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7) Air pollution ‘major cause of death’ in all London boroughs

Michael Holder

The top ten categories of deaths in London boroughs have been listed  
for the first time, with campaign group Clean Air in London (CAL)  
claiming air pollution is a major cause in a majority of these  
categories.

Air Quality News, January 2014 - read article  
(http://www.airqualitynews.com/2014/01/10/air-pollution-major-cause-of-death-in-all-london-boroughs/)

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8) Green economy thinking and the control of nitrous oxide emissions

Mark A. Sutton, Ute M. Skiba, Hans J.M. van Grinsven, Oene Oenema,  
Catherine J. Watson, John Williams, Deborah T. Hellums, Rob Maas,  
Steen Gyldenkaerne, Himanshu Pathak, Wilfried Winiwarter

As a potent greenhouse gas and contributor to stratospheric ozone  
depletion, nitrous oxide (N2O) represents a global pollutant of  
growing concern. We use the N2O example to consider the potential for  
Green Economy thinking to promote sustainability through emission  
reduction. N2O control should be considered within the context of the  
wider nitrogen cycle, with an emphasis on improving full-chain  
nitrogen use efficiency (NUEfc), exploiting a combination of technical  
measures in agriculture, industry, transport, waste water management  
and other combustion sources. Avoiding excessive meat and dairy  
consumption by citizens in developed countries can substantially  
reduce N2O emissions. These measures offer many options for low-cost  
control of N2O emissions, while reducing the health and ecosystem  
threats of other N pollution forms. A recent estimate suggests that  
improving global NUEfc by 20% would provide a N-saving worth ~23  
billion USD to business, plus health and environmentalbenefits worth  
~160 billion USD. The value of externalities highlights the green  
economy case for governments to develop a suite of instruments to go  
further in controlling N2O emissions than the Sector View would  
typically allow.

Environmental Development Available online 30 October 2013 In Press,  
Corrected Proof - read article  
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2211464513001073)

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9) Clearing the air over Europe, and elsewhere

In Europe, 2013 was the “year of air”, and in late December the  
European Commission announced a new policy package aiming to clean up  
Europe's air—by 2030. If apparently unambitious in its timeframe, the  
policy seems sensible because of the extremely damaging effects of air  
pollution on health. Risks of respiratory and cardiovascular diseases,  
including lung cancer, are associated with air pollution, illnesses  
that are likely to be borne disproportionately by people of low  
socioeconomic status. These risks provide a strong incentive on their  
own for action to reduce disease, limit health-care costs, and improve  
working productivity; in addition, the policy cites damage to natural  
and built environments caused by air pollution. By 2030, the policy  
estimates that spending some €3·3 billion per year on pollution  
mitigation across Europe could yield much greater annual aggregate  
savings worth at least €40 billion.

The Lancet, 383:9911, 1, 4 January 2014 - read article  
(http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(13)62714-2/fulltext?elsca1=ETOC-LANCET&elsca2=email&elsca3=E24A35F)

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10) Factors influencing modal split of commuting journeys in  
medium-size European cities

Georgina Santos, Hanna Maoh, Dimitris Potoglou, Thomas von Brunn

This paper attempts to identify factors that influence modal split for  
journeys to work in 112 medium-size cities in Europe. Policies aimed  
at increasing the number of buses (or bus equivalents) and reducing  
public transport fares are likely to increase public transport share.  
Policies aimed at discouraging car ownership are likely to reduce car  
share.

Journal of Transport Geography 30, June 2013, 127–137 - read abstract  
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0966692313000690)

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11) Air Pollution and Preterm Premature Rupture of Membranes: A  
Spatiotemporal Analysis

Payam Dadvand, Xavier Basagaña, Francesc Figueras, David Martinez, Rob  
Beelen, Marta Cirach, Audrey de Nazelle, Gerard Hoek, Bart Ostro, Mark  
J. Nieuwenhuijsen

We found an increase in preterm PROM (premature rupture of membranes)  
risk of up to 50% (95% confidence interval: 4, 116) and a 1.3-day (95%  
confidence interval: −1.9, −0.6) reduction in gestational age at ROM  
(rupture of membranes) associated with PM2.5 absorbance, nitrogen  
dioxide exposure, and nitrogen oxide exposure during the entire  
pregnancy and the last 3 months prior to ROM.

American Journal of Epidemiology January 2014, 179,2 200-207 - read  
abstract (http://aje.oxfordjournals.org/content/179/2/200.short)

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12) Associations Between Short-term Changes in Air Pollution and  
Correlates of Arterial Stiffness: The Veterans Affairs Normative Aging  
Study, 2007–2011

Amar J. Mehta, Antonella Zanobetti, Petros Koutrakis, Murray A.  
Mittleman, David Sparrow, Pantel Vokonas, Joel Schwartz

The findings support the hypothesis that exposure to air pollution may  
affect vascular function.

American Journal of Epidemiology January 2014, 179,2 192-199 - read  
abstract (http://aje.oxfordjournals.org/content/179/2/192.abstract)

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13) Addressing the Burden of Disease Attributable to Air Pollution in  
India: The Need to Integrate across Household and Ambient Air  
Pollution Exposures

Kalpana Balakrishnan, Aaron Cohen, Kirk R. Smith

Editorial in Environ Health Perspect; January 2014,  
DOI:10.1289/ehp.1307822 - read article  
(http://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/1307822/)

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14) Air Pollution and Respiratory Infections during Early Childhood:  
An Analysis of 10 European Birth Cohorts within the ESCAPE Project

Elaina A. MacIntyre, Ulrike Gehring, Anna Mölter, Elaine Fuertes,  
Claudia Klümper, Ursula Krämer, Ulrich Quass, Barbara Hoffmann, Mireia  
Gascon, Bert Brunekreef, Gerard H. Koppelman, Rob Beelen, Gerard Hoek,  
Matthias Birk, Johan C. de Jongste, H.A. Smit, Josef Cyrys, Olena  
Gruzieva, Michal Korek, Anna Bergström, Raymond M. Agius, Frank de  
Vocht, Angela Simpson, Daniela Porta, Francesco Forastiere, Chiara  
Badaloni, Giulia Cesaroni, Ana Esplugues, Ana Fernández-Somoano,  
Aitana Lerxundi, Jordi Sunyer, Marta Cirach, Mark J. Nieuwenhuijsen,  
Göran Pershagen, Joachim Heinrich

Our meta-analysis of 10 European birth cohorts within the ESCAPE  
project found consistent evidence for an association between air  
pollution and pneumonia in early childhood, and some evidence for an  
association with otitis media.

Environ Health Perspect; January 2014, DOI:10.1289/ehp.1306755 - read  
article (http://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/1306755/)

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15) Evaluating Multipollutant Exposure and Urban Air Quality:  
Pollutant Interrelationships, Neighborhood Variability, and Nitrogen  
Dioxide as a Proxy Pollutant

Ilan Levy, Cristian Mihele, Gang Lu, Julie Narayan, Jeffrey R. Brook

Our findings indicate that the multipollutant mix varies considerably  
throughout the city, both in time and in space, and thus, no single  
pollutant would be a perfect proxy measure for the entire mix under  
all circumstances. However, based on overall average spatial  
correlations with the suite of pollutants measured, nitrogen oxide  
species appeared to be the best available indicators of spatial  
variation in exposure to the outdoor urban air pollutant mixture.

Environ Health Perspect; January 2014, DOI:10.1289/ehp.1306518 - read  
article (http://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/1306518/)

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16) Air Pollution Exposures During Adulthood and Risk of Endometriosis  
in the Nurses’ Health Study II

Shruthi Mahalingaiah, Jaime E. Hart, Francine Laden, Ann Aschengrau,  
Stacey A. Missmer

Traffic and air pollution exposures during adulthood were not  
associated with incident endometriosis in this cohort of women.

Environ Health Perspect; January 2014, DOI:10.1289/ehp.1306627 - read  
article (http://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/1306627/)

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17) Long-Term Exposure to Concentrated Ambient PM2.5 Increases Mouse  
Blood Pressure through Abnormal Activation of the Sympathetic Nervous  
System: A Role for Hypothalamic Inflammation

Zhekang Ying, Xiaohua Xu, Yuntao Bai, Jixin Zhong, Minjie Chen, Yijia  
Liang, Jinzhuo Zhao, Dongyao Liu, Masako Morishita, Qinghua Sun,  
Catherine Spino, Robert D. Brook, Jack R. Harkema, Sanjay Rajagopalan

Long-term CAPs (concentrated ambient PM2.5) exposure increases BP  
(blood pressure) through sympathetic nervous system activation, which  
may involve hypothalamic inflammation.

Environ Health Perspect; January 2014, DOI:10.1289/ehp.1307151 - read  
article (http://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/1307151/)

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18) Diesel exhaust particulate increases the size and complexity of  
lesions in atherosclerotic mice

Mark R Miller, Steven G McLean, Rodger Duffin, Akeem O Lawal, Jesus A  
Araujo, Catherine A Shaw, Nicholas L Mills, Ken Donaldson, David E  
Newby, Patrick WF Hadoke

Increased atherosclerosis is caused by the particulate component of  
diesel exhaust producing advanced plaques with a potentially more  
vulnerable phenotype. These results are consistent with the suggestion  
that removal of the particulate component would reduce the adverse  
cardiovascular effects of diesel exhaust.

Particle and Fibre Toxicology 2013, 10:61  doi:10.1186/1743-8977-10-61  
- read article  
(http://www.particleandfibretoxicology.com/content/10/1/61)

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19) Cardiovascular Depression in Rats Exposed to Inhaled Particulate  
Matter and Ozone: Effects of Diet-Induced Metabolic Syndrome

James G. Wagner, Katryn Allen, Hui-yu Yang, Bin Nan, Masako Morishita,  
Bhramar Mukherjee, J. Timothy Dvonch, Catherine Spino, Gregory D.  
Fink, Sanjay Rajagopalan, Qinghua Sun, Robert D. Brook, Jack R. Harkema

Cardiovascular depression in O3- and PM2.5-exposed rats was enhanced  
and prolonged in rats with HFrD-induced MetS. These results in rodents  
suggest that people with MetS may be prone to similar exaggerated BP  
and HR responses to inhaled air pollutants.

Environ Health Perspect; January 2014, DOI:10.1289/ehp.1307085 - read  
article (http://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/1307085/)

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20) Air Pollution–Mediated Susceptibility to Inflammation and Insulin  
Resistance: Influence of CCR2 Pathways in Mice

Cuiqing Liu, Xiaohua Xu, Yuntao Bai, Tse-Yao Wang, Xiaoquan Rao, Aixia  
Wang, Lixian Sun, Zhekang Ying, Liubov Gushchina, Andrei Maiseyeu,  
Masako Morishita, Qinghua Sun, Jack R. Harkema, Sanjay Rajagopalan

PM2.5 mediates IR (insulin resistance) by regulating VAT inflammation,  
hepatic lipid metabolism, and glucose utilization in skeletal muscle  
via both CCR2-dependent and -independent pathways. These findings  
provide new mechanistic links between air pollution and metabolic  
abnormalities underlying IR.

Environ Health Perspect; January 2014, DOI:10.1289/ehp.1306841 - read  
article (http://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/1306841/)

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21) Fine Particulate Matter (PM2.5) in the United Kingdom

AIR QUALITY EXPERT GROUP

A growing body of research has pointed towards the smaller particles,  
in particular PM less than 2.5 µm in diameter (PM2.5), as a metric  
more closely associated with adverse health effects than other metrics  
such as PM10 (particles with a diameter less than 10 µm).This report,  
prepared by the Air Quality Expert Group (AQEG) for Defra and the  
Devolved Administrations gives an overview of the evidence base for  
PM2.5 in the UK. The report challenges the robustness of the evidence  
for making future policy decisions in respect of PM2.5 in the UK  
context. There is an analysis of the evidence concerning key relevant  
aspects including PM2.5 measurement and the composition and current  
concentrations of PM2.5 across the UK, as well as source emissions and  
receptor modelling for PM2.5. Finally, AQEG evaluates the methods for  
modelling PM2.5 and what can be said about future concentrations. The  
report concludes with an assessment of the key uncertainties and gaps  
in the evidence base
that require action.

Defra, 2012, 203pp - read full report  
(https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/69635/pb13837-aqeg-fine-particle-matter-20121220.pdf)

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22) The burden of air pollution on years of life lost in Beijing,  
China, 2004-08: retrospective regression analysis of daily deaths

Yuming Guo, Shanshan Li, Zhaoxing Tian, Xiaochuan Pan, Jinliang Zhang,  
Gail Williams

YLL (years of life lost) provides a complementary measure for  
examining the effect of air pollutants on mortality. Increased YLL are  
associated with increased air pollution. This study highlights the  
need to reduce air pollution in Beijing, China, to protect the health  
of the population.

BMJ 2013;347:f7139 - read article  
(http://www.bmj.com/content/347/bmj.f7139?etoc=)

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23) China tackles the health effects of air pollution

Zhu Chen, Jin-Nan Wang, Guo-Xia Ma, Yan-Shen Zhang

The Lancet, December 2013, 382, 9909, 1959-1960 - article  
(http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(13)62064-4/fulltext?elsca1=ETOC-LANCET&elsca2=email&elsca3=E24A35F) only available to  
subscribers

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24) Fine Particulate Matter and Risk of Preterm Birth in Connecticut  
in 2000–2006: A Longitudinal Study

Gavin Pereira, Kathleen Belanger, Keita Ebisu, Michelle L. Bell

Pregnancies with elevated PM2.5 exposure were more likely to result in  
preterm birth than were other pregnancies to the same woman at lower  
exposure. Associations were most pronounced in the first trimester and  
among Hispanic women.

Am. J. Epidemiol. (2014) 179 (1): 67-74, doi: 10.1093/aje/kwt216 -  
read abstract  
(http://aje.oxfordjournals.org/content/179/1/67.abstract.html?etoc)

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25) Editorial: The year of air

Christer Ågren

We are now approaching the end of 2013, the year declared by  
environment commissioner Janez Potočnik as the year of air and the  
year when the European Commission is to present its new clean air  
strategy. More than 95 per cent of EU’s urban citizens are exposed to  
harmful levels of PM2.5 and ozone, and commissioner Potočnik recently  
confirmed that air pollution is the number one environmental cause of  
death in the EU, with over 400 000 premature deaths in 2010 - more  
than ten times the annual deaths from traffic accidents. For that same  
year, the external costs of health damage due to air pollution was  
estimated to amount to between €330-940 billion.

Acid News 2013 No. 4, December 2013 - read article  
(http://www.airclim.org/acidnews/editorial-year-air)

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26) Energy, climate and air quality policy synergies

Christer Ågren

Significant co-benefits can be realised for health, ecosystems and the  
economy by linking climate change policies with those for air  
pollution control and energy security.

Acid News 2013 No. 4, December 2013 - read article  
(http://www.airclim.org/acidnews/energy-climate-and-air-quality-policy-synergies)

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27) Roadmap for less-polluting vehicles

Christer Ågren

In the absence of new policies, premature deaths from vehicle-related  
PM exposure in urban areas will increase by 50 per cent worldwide by  
2030. Without new actions to limit vehicle emissions, air pollution  
and associated health impacts from road transportation are projected  
to increase in many countries around the world. However, setting  
stringent limits on vehicle emissions can force the introduction of  
technologies that will drastically cut emissions of local air  
pollutants. This would temporarily decouple pollutant emissions from  
growing vehicle activity and significantly reduce emissions that  
contribute to serious health problems.

Acid News 2013 No. 4, December 2013 - read article  
(http://www.airclim.org/acidnews/roadmap-less-polluting-vehicles) with  
links to report

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28) Air pollution levels still much too high

Christer Ågren

More than 95 per cent of the EU’s urban citizens are exposed to levels  
of PM2.5 and ozone higher than the reference values recommended by the  
World Health Organization. Europe’s air pollution problem is far from  
solved. A new report by the European Environment Agency (EEA) points  
out that two specific pollutants, particulate matter and ground-level  
ozone, continue to be a source breathing problems, cardiovascular  
disease and shortened lives.

Acid News 2013 No. 4, December 2013 - read article  
(http://www.airclim.org/acidnews/air-pollution-levels-still-much-too-high)  
(with links to WHO report)

29) M1 Junctions 32-35a: Smart Motorway

Highways Agency Project

This project will relieve congestion and smooth the flow of the  
traffic, improving safety and journey times. These benefits will also  
support economic development in the region. We already have evidence  
of the benefits that a smart motorway scheme can bring. The first  
managed motorway scheme opened to traffic on the M42 motorway in 2006.  
Recent analysis of the data gathered since opening has found that  
journey time reliability improved by 22 per cent and reduced emissions  
by up to 10 per cent due to traffic flowing more smoothly. In  
addition, personal injury accidents have reduced by more than half  
(55.7%) since hard shoulder running was introduced. There was also an  
overall reduction in the severity of accidents with zero fatalities  
and fewer seriously injured. -

read full details  
(http://www.highways.gov.uk/roads/road-projects/m1-junctions-32-35a)

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30) Immersive virtual reality and environmental noise assessment: An  
innovative audio–visual approach

Francesco Ruotolo, Luigi Maffei, Maria Di Gabriele, Tina Iachini,  
Massimiliano Masullo, Gennaro Ruggiero, Vincenzo Paolo Senese

Several international studies have shown that traffic noise has a  
negative impact on people's health and that people's annoyance does  
not depend only on noise energetic levels, but rather on  
multi-perceptual factors. Overall, the results showed that the  
introduction of a projected motorway in the environment can have  
immediate detrimental effects of people's well-being depending on the  
distance from the noise source. In particular, noise due to the new  
infrastructure seems to exert a negative influence on short term  
verbal memory and to increase both visual and noise annoyance. The  
theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.

Environmental Impact Assessment Review 41, July 2013, 10–20 - read  
abstract  
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0195925513000188)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------

Compiler and Editor: Barbara Rimmington, Researcher, East End Quality
of Life Initiative

10 Montgomery Terrace Road

Sheffield S6 3BU

Tel. 0114 285 9931

Fax 0114 278 7173

Email: barbara at sheffieldct.co.uk

Web: www.sheffieldeastend.org.uk

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