Air Quality

Air Quality News -- ScienceDaily What is air pollution? Read news articles on the sources of air pollution and what can be done to minimize pollutants. Learn about both indoor air quality control and outdoor air pollution.

  • Genes, ozone, and autism
    on June 23, 2017 at 7:55 pm

    Exposure to ozone in the environment puts individuals with high levels of genetic variation at an even higher risk for developing autism than would be expected just by adding the two risk factors together, a new analysis shows. The study is the first to look at the combined effects of genome-wide genetic change and environmental risk factors for autism. […]

  • Catalyst mimics the z-scheme of photosynthesis
    on June 22, 2017 at 6:30 pm

    A new study demonstrates a process with great potential for developing technologies for reducing CO2 levels. […]

  • New efficient, low-temperature catalyst for hydrogen production
    on June 22, 2017 at 6:29 pm

    Scientists have developed a new low-temperature catalyst for producing high-purity hydrogen gas while simultaneously using up carbon monoxide (CO). The discovery could improve the performance of fuel cells that run on hydrogen fuel but can be poisoned by CO. […]

  • New catalyst paves way for carbon neutral fuel
    on June 21, 2017 at 2:31 pm

    Scientists have paved the way for carbon neutral fuel with the development of a new efficient catalyst that converts carbon dioxide (CO2) from the air into synthetic natural gas in a 'clean' process using solar energy. […]

  • Ocean predicts future northwestern European and Arctic climate
    on June 21, 2017 at 2:01 pm

    There is a clear potential for practical and useful predictions of northwestern European and Arctic climate based on the state of the ocean, new research indicates. […]

  • Sustainable ethanol from carbon dioxide? A possible path
    on June 19, 2017 at 8:54 pm

    A recent discovery could lead to a new, more sustainable way to make ethanol without corn or other crops. This promising technology has three basic components: water, carbon dioxide and electricity delivered through a copper catalyst. […]

  • Chemistry of sea spray particles linked for first time to formation process
    on June 19, 2017 at 7:15 pm

    For the first time, researchers have identified what drives the observed differences in the chemical make-up of sea spray particles ejected from the ocean by breaking waves. […]

  • California named state with the worst air quality (again)
    on June 19, 2017 at 1:27 pm

    High ozone levels and a quickly growing population are making it tough to implement regulations to reduce pollution, says a professor. […]

  • Six key impact areas of shale oil and gas development in Texas
    on June 19, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    A comprehensive review of the impacts of oil and gas development in Texas by a cross-disciplinary task force of top researchers finds a wide range of both benefits and consequences for the state's environment and communities. […]

  • Could renewable 'power-by-wire' help fix China’s air pollution problems?
    on June 16, 2017 at 4:17 pm

    Bringing renewable power ‘by wire’ from western China to its power-hungry Eastern cities could have benefits for both local air quality and global climate change, new research has found. […]

  • Reducing environmental impact of idling buses and delivery trucks
    on June 16, 2017 at 12:37 pm

    Researchers have developed a system for service vehicles that could reduce emissions and save companies and governments millions of dollars per year in fuel costs. […]

  • Widespread snowmelt in West Antarctica during unusually warm summer
    on June 15, 2017 at 12:46 pm

    An area of West Antarctica more than twice the size of California partially melted in 2016 when warm winds forced by an especially strong El Nino blew over the continent. […]

  • Hydroelectric dams may jeopardize the Amazon's future
    on June 14, 2017 at 5:37 pm

    Hundreds of built and proposed hydroelectric dams may significantly harm life in and around the Amazon by trapping the flow of rich nutrients and modifying the climate from Central America to the Gulf of Mexico, experts report. […]

  • Wildfires pollute much more than previously thought
    on June 14, 2017 at 3:28 pm

    Wildfires are major polluters. Their plumes are three times as dense with aerosol-forming fine particles as previously believed. For the first time, researchers have flown an orchestra of modern instruments through brutishly turbulent wildfire plumes to measure their emissions in real time. They have also exposed other never before measured toxins. […]

  • Energy-efficient cleaning robot
    on June 14, 2017 at 1:27 pm

    State-of-the-art solar cells are efficient -- but are even more so when they are kept clean. A cleaning robot enables solar panels to deliver at full capacity. […]

  • Solar paint offers endless energy from water vapor
    on June 14, 2017 at 1:18 pm

    Researchers have developed a compound that draws moisture from the air and splits it into oxygen and hydrogen. The hydrogen can be captured as a clean fuel source. […]

  • Winning climate strategy demands details
    on June 12, 2017 at 9:09 pm

    Examining the daily minutia of climate, not just temperature, but also sunshine, precipitation and soil moisture simultaneously all over a country gives a better understanding of how variable a land's climate can be. That information is crucial when countries are setting policies aimed at growing food, protecting water supplies and the environment and stemming disease outbreaks. […]

  • Peatlands, already dwindling, could face further losses
    on June 12, 2017 at 7:36 pm

    Tropical peatlands have been disappearing fast due to clear-cutting and drainage projects. Now, new research shows peatlands face another threat, as climate change alters rainfall patterns, potentially destroying much of what remains and turning these carbon sinks into net carbon sources. […]

  • Lab on a chip could monitor health, germs and pollutants
    on June 12, 2017 at 7:35 pm

    Imagine wearing a device that continuously analyzes your sweat or blood for different types of biomarkers, such as proteins that show you may have breast cancer or lung cancer. Engineers have invented biosensor technology -- known as a lab on a chip -- that could be used in hand-held or wearable devices to monitor your health and exposure to dangerous bacteria, viruses and pollutants. […]

  • Iqaluit could start running out of fresh water by 2024
    on June 12, 2017 at 3:53 pm

    Without action, the supply of fresh water in Iqaluit will begin to dwindle by 2024 due to climate change and increased demand, new research has found. […]

  • Volcanic 'plumerang' could impact human health
    on June 12, 2017 at 1:44 pm

    A new study has found a previously undetected potential health risk from the high concentration of small particles found in a boomerang-like return of a volcanic plume.&nbs […]

  • Demo plant produces renewable fuel from carbon dioxide captured from the air
    on June 9, 2017 at 2:38 pm

    The unique Soletair demo plant developed in Finland uses carbon dioxide to produce renewable fuels and chemicals. The aim of the project is to demonstrate the technical performance of the overall process and produce 200 liters of fuels and other hydrocarbons for research purposes. This concerns a one-of-a-kind demo plant in which the entire process chain, from solar power generation to hydrocarbon production, is in the same place. […]

  • Scientists advancing hope for reefs in the Philippines
    on June 8, 2017 at 6:55 pm

    Researchers have returned from the Philippines with new species discoveries and deeper insights into threatened coral reef ecosystems. […]

  • PFOA threat to drinking water addressed with novel material
    on June 8, 2017 at 5:34 pm

    A highly toxic water pollutant, known as perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), last year caused a number of U.S. communities to close their drinking water supplies. PFOA contamination also is a pervasive problem worldwide. A research team now reports an inexpensive and renewable material that rapidly removes PFOA from water. The novel treatment effectively eliminates the micropollutant to below 10 parts per trillion, far below US Environmental Protection Agency and all state health advisory limits. […]

  • Culprit hidden in plain sight in Alzheimer disease development
    on June 8, 2017 at 4:35 pm

    A new study heightens concerns over the detrimental short- and long-term impact of airborne iron-rich strongly magnetic combustion-derived nanoparticles present in young urbanites' brains. […]

  • Small climb in mean temperatures linked to far higher chance of deadly heat waves
    on June 7, 2017 at 8:30 pm

    An increase in mean temperature of 0.5 degrees Celsius over half a century may not seem all that serious, but it's enough to have more than doubled the probability of a heat wave killing in excess of 100 people in India, according to researchers. […]

  • New-generation material removes iodine from water
    on June 7, 2017 at 4:37 pm

    New material scrubs iodine from water for the first time and could hold the key to cleaning nuclear accidents. […]

  • New way to detect Palmer amaranth in contaminated seedlots
    on June 6, 2017 at 3:27 pm

    Some seed mixtures planted on Conservation Reserve Program acres have been contaminated with Palmer amaranth, an aggressive weed. Seed producers must choose between time-consuming or expensive options to certify that their products are free of Palmer amaranth. A new assay can quickly detect Palmer amaranth in mixed seed lots at a comparatively low cost. […]

  • Increased risk of ozone loss over the United States in summer, evidence shows
    on June 5, 2017 at 7:59 pm

    The protective stratospheric ozone layer above the central United States is vulnerable to erosion during the summer months from ozone-depleting chemical reactions, exposing people, livestock and crops to the harmful effects of UV radiation, research shows. […]

  • Splitting carbon dioxide using low-cost catalyst materials
    on June 5, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    A promising avenue for the future of clean energy is to store it in the form of carbon-based fuels produced from renewable sources, effectively enabling the clean use of liquid fuels such as gasoline. A first step is the electrolysis of carbon dioxide into oxygen and carbon monoxide. But current CO-forming catalysts are either not selective enough or too expensive to be industrially viable. Now scientists have developed an Earth-abundant catalyst based on copper-oxide nanowires modified with tin oxide. […]