UPDATE: American Lung Association weighs in
“While we know that air pollution is not the dominant cause of atherosclerotic diseases, these results are consistent with findings that air pollution provokes inflammation, accelerates atherosclerosis, and alters cardiac function,” said lead author C. Arden Pope III, Ph.D., an epidemiologist at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.In an article posted here on December 25th, I included a link to a Washington Post piece stating that the EPA is proposing new national air quality standards for particle air pollution, the first time in eight years that changes will occur. As indicated, this has ramifications for heart disease risk.
Now, The American Lung Association has weighed in on the proposed new standards.
And, they're not happy.
If EPA adopts the standard as proposed, the Agency will have failed the most fundamental task required by the Clean Air Act-to protect public health from one of the major air pollutants. For the first time, EPA will have ignored recommendations from its own staff scientists and from its official outside review panel of scientists; both groups have advised setting a stronger standard than EPA has proposed.
During the coming public comment period, we will wage a vigorous campaign to urge EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson to follow sound science and strengthen this proposal to truly protect public health.
As we have seen, it's not only about your lungs, but your heart, too. Feel free to sign a letter to the EPA.