Breathe Easy: Tackling Air Quality for Healthier Communities

By Nanmaran Anbuselvan



Anbuselvan N. Breathe easy: tackling air quality for healthier communities. HPHR. 2023;77.

Breathe Easy: Tackling Air Quality for Healthier Communities

The United States has major problems with air quality, which has a direct influence on public health. People and communities around the nation are at significant danger from poor air quality, which is brought on by a variety of contaminants and emissions. It is impossible to ignore how bad air pollution is for our heart, lungs, and general quality of life. Understanding the link between air quality and public health is becoming more and more crucial as the country deals with the effects of industrialisation, traffic emissions, and other sources of pollution.


Over the past few weeks, smoke from wildfires burning in eastern Canada has filled lungs and turned skies orange throughout the northeastern United States, most noticeably in New York City and the surrounding area. These wildfires, fueled by climate change-induced conditions, have unleashed massive amounts of smoke and particulate matter into the atmosphere, leading to hazardous air pollution levels in several regions. As the smoke engulfs communities, cities, and even neighboring countries, the adverse health effects are far-reaching. The possibility of climate change’s influence on future wildfire regimes, both in Canada and internationally, has long been hinted at and warned against by scientists. Understanding the connection between the Canada wildfires and public health is crucial for recognizing the urgency of addressing air quality concerns, implementing preventive measures, and ensuring the well-being of individuals and communities in the face of these increasingly frequent and severe environmental challenges.


In response to this problem, several states are looking for methods to strengthen resilience and safeguard the public’s health. Wildfire smoke offers an increasing hazard as a source of air pollution. Understanding the evolution of the air pollution-related health burden over time and identifying individuals at higher risk of unfavorable health effects due to heightened health sensitivity and greater smoke exposure are crucial steps in this process.


In conclusion, urgent attention and extensive efforts are needed to address the present air quality issue in the United States, which has been made worse by circumstances like the recent wildfires in Canada. Poor air quality has a significant negative influence on public health since it increases the risk of respiratory and cardiovascular diseases, aggravates pre-existing illnesses, and lowers the quality of life in general. Governments, organizations, and individuals must work together to give the implementation of successful initiatives top priority as communities deal with the effects of industrial pollutants, traffic pollution, and natural disasters. Investing in clean energy sources, supporting eco-friendly transportation, improving air pollution monitoring and control, and pushing environmental laws that safeguard public health are just a few examples of what this requires. We can strive towards a future where everyone has the right to breathe clean air and experience optimal well-being if we acknowledge the relationship between air quality and public health. We cannot protect future generations’ health and well-being without working together to create healthier, more resilient communities.


Clear Skies, Healthy Lives.


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About the Author

Nanmaran Anbuselvan