Posted by Ivey on June 24th, 2010
Following the April 20th BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, there has been growing concern over the health risks posed to cleanup workers, as well as the potential long-term effects to Gulf Coast residents and marine life. As of June 24th, 425 oil exposure calls have been placed to the American Association of Poison Control Centers. These calls are characterized by someone being exposed to oil, dispersant, food contamination, or any other associated toxins. A Fox News report states that of the 100+ oil-spill illnesses reported in Louisiana, 74 of them concerned clean-up workers hired by BP.
To support relief efforts, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is collecting samples and monitoring air, water, and beach conditions to determine potential health risks to the public and the environment. Currently, air quality levels for ozone and particulates are normal for the summer months in the Gulf. However, the EPA has observed some odor-causing pollutants associated with oil at low levels in the Gulf Coast region. These toxins can cause short-term effects such as headaches, eye, nose and throat irritation, or even nausea. As oil and toxic fumes from burning oil make their way toward the shore, experts are unsure of the potential damage that may ensue for residents and cleanup workers.
Posted by Ivey on June 17th, 2010
A recent article in the CNN series, Toxic America, discussed five hazardous substances that most people unknowingly encounter on a daily basis. Among those substances was formaldehyde, which is particularly harmful to your indoor air quality. A colorless gas with a pungent smell, formaldehyde is a known carcinogen that can cause cancers of the respiratory and gastrointestinal tracts as well as nausea, skin irritation, watery eyes, and burning sensations in the eyes, nose, and throat.
We are often exposed to formaldehyde as a result of breathing the volatile compounds that are released from products that contain it. Unfortunately, formaldehyde exposure is an ever-present threat in most homes. The toxic substance is commonly found in resins that are used as glue during the manufacturing of pressed wood products, such as particle board, plywood, paneling, and fiberboard. It can also be found in glues and other adhesives, durable-press fabrics like drapes, car exhaust, and cigarette smoke.
Posted by Ivey on June 10th, 2010
Houseplants are a great way to add color and life to a room, but did you know that some houseplants can actually improve your indoor air quality? Research published in 1989 by NASA and the Associated Landscape Contractors of America (ALCA)—now known as PLANET (Professional Landcare Network)—revealed that common household plants can help remove harmful indoor air contaminants including formaldehyde, benzene, and trichloroethylene.
Posted by Ivey on June 4th, 2010
As a lifelong resident of the Southeastern United States, I am all too familiar with the delicate balance of humidity and coolness necessary to stay comfortable during steamy summer months. To achieve this harmony, many people look for air treatment solutions such as dehumidifiers to remove uncomfortable and potentially harmful excess moisture from their homes. With so many of these appliances on the market, how do you know which one is the best value?
A leading consumer reporting agency recently ranked two Danby dehumidifiers offered by Sylvane among their top picks for efficient, cost-effective moisture removal options. The Danby DDR6009REE ranked among the top five for large-capacity dehumidifiers, and the Danby DDR5009REE ranked among the top five as well for medium-capacity dehumidifiers.