san jose air quality today

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Bay Area Air Quality District Extends Advisory As Smoke Moves South

San jose air quality today -

Opinion: Auburn vs. College Station, Greeley vs. Flagstaff — the surprising differences in where men and women prefer to live

College towns typically offer their residents a high quality of life. But single men and women disagree over which are better. Men would prefer Auburn, Ala., home to Auburn University, while women would prefer College Station, Texas, where Texas A&M is located. Auburn ranks 30th for men and 179th for women. College Station ranks 150th for men and 13th for women.

But where single men and women disagree most is over Gadsden, Ala. Women say the quality of life there is by far the worst of the 283 metropolitan areas we studied. Men say it’s average.

Gadsden has a relatively hot climate, relatively few restaurants, relatively few public parks and relatively less progressive gender role attitudes. It is a blue-collar town that is home to a large Goodyear plant. But not just any Goodyear plant. This is the plant that because of its egregious gender pay discrimination against one of its managers, Lilly Ledbetter, led to new federal legislation toward gender equity in the workplace, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act (the first piece of legislation signed into law by then-President Barack Obama). 

For a full list of all 283 metro areas, click here.

To be sure, men and women are in broad agreement on the overall quality of life in the top-ranked cities, many of them situated along the West Coast, places like Santa Barbara and San Jose, Calif. – both of which rank in the top 10 for men and women along with Honolulu, Hawaii. On the East Coast, among the top-ranked cities for men and women are Boston, Mass.; Portland, Maine; and Panama City, Fla. (all rank in the top 25 cities for men and women).

Click here for an interactive version of that chart.

When we look for reasons behind the differences in the evaluations of quality of life by men and women, we find they tend to like the same things, but to very different degrees. For example, quality of life in a city increases for men and women when violent crime rates are lower – but more so for women (as women experience a higher level of fear of crime). Similarly, better air quality increases quality of life for men and women – but more so for women (as women are more concerned about environmental quality than men).

Greeley offers lower violent crime rates and better air quality than Flagstaff. College Station also has lower violent crime rates and better air quality than Auburn.

No one likes a long commute – but women especially work to avoid it. Though women and men seem to prefer cities with better access to public transportation, men exhibit stronger preferences for public transportation. Thus, some of the nation’s largest and most congested cities — New York, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles — are less preferred by women (Figure 2).

Large cities do offer an amenity single women find appealing – single men. A better “marriage market” appears to boost the quality of life valuations for women but not for men.

Between the college town and the mountain views, women would choose the college town with a higher percentage of well-educated single men (College Station over Greeley) while men would choose the mountain views (Flagstaff over Auburn).

Although the marriage market seems more important to women than men, women are likely looking to find a mate who will be their equal (women and men are increasingly marrying partners with similar education levels and interests). Cities in states with less traditional and more egalitarian attitudes toward gender roles have higher quality-of-life estimations for women. Single men also show preferences for places with less-traditional gender attitudes, but their preference is, again, much smaller than for women.

Slightly more progressive gender role attitudes in Texas compared to Alabama helps push College Station above Auburn for women. Auburn offers comparatively more places to drink while College Station offers more restaurants (women prefer to allocate a larger share of household expenditures on restaurants).

What does this mean for local officials looking to boost the appeal of their city? They can’t create mountains or moderate weather (perhaps they can create a beach, if Paris is a guide), but they can shift their focus away from attracting businesses toward attracting people and figure the businesses will follow.

If they do adopt this strategy, they may want to invest in the amenities that women prefer, since frequently they are also valued (though to a lesser extent) by men. In fact, we find that cities more preferred by women (cities with higher quality of life valuations than men) have experienced higher growth.

Women’s underrepresentation in state and local government (only about a quarter of mayors and state legislators are women) may mean that the amenities that women prefer receive less investment.

I saw this with my conversation with Heather McGhee (former president of Demos and author of “The Sum of Us”). She discussed the underinvestment and even disinvestment in public amenities such as parks – an amenity for which women show stronger preferences — and how this underinvestment and disinvestment in these types of public amenities leaves our communities and its residents (and the economy) worse off.

Amanda Weinstein is an associate professor of economics at the University of Akron in Ohio and a co-host of The Suburban Women Problem Podcast. Follow her on Twitter @ProfWeinstein. Lockwood Reynolds is an associate professor of economics at Kent State University, also in Ohio.

Источник: https://www.marketwatch.com/story/auburn-vs-college-station-greeley-vs-flagstaff-the-surprising-differences-in-where-men-and-women-prefer-to-live-11638198363
meteoblue

The top panel shows the forecast for the Common Air Quality Index (CAQI) used in Europe since 2006. It is a number on a scale from 1 to 100, where a low value (green colors) means good air quality and a high value (red colors) means bad air quality. CAQI colour-coding is used in all air pollution forecast panels of the meteogram to indicate the level of pollution. For the pollen forecast there are no official guidelines for color-coding, as pollen are not part of the Air Quality Index forecast. The Air Quality index is defined separately near roads (“roadside” index) or away from roads ("background" index). meteoblue uses the background index, because weather models can not reproduce small-scale differences along the roads. Therefore, measurements along roads will show higher values than forecast here.

The second panel shows the forecast of particles (PM and desert dust) for San Jose. Atmospheric particulate matter (PM) are microscopic solid or liquid matter suspended in the air. Sources of particulate matter can be natural or anthropogenic. Of greatest concern to public health are the particles small enough to be inhaled into the deepest parts of the lung. These particles are less than 10 microns in diameter (approximately 1/7th the thickness of the a human hair) and are defined as PM10. They are a mixture of materials that can include smoke, soot, dust, salt, acids, and metals. Particulate matter also forms when gases emitted from motor vehicles and industry undergo chemical reactions in the atmosphere. PM10 is visible by eye as the haze that we think of as smog. PM10 are among the most harmful of all air pollutants.

  • PM10 can increase the number and severity of asthma attacks
  • PM10 causes or aggravate bronchitis and other lung diseases
  • PM10 reduces the body's ability to fight infections

PM10 includes fine particulate matter defined as PM2.5, which are fine particles with a diameter of 2.5 μm or less. The biggest impact of particulate air pollution on public health is understood to be from long-term exposure to PM2.5:

  • PM2.5 increases the age-specific mortality risk, particularly from cardiovascular causes.

Desert Dust consists of particles smaller than 62 μm originating in deserts. Often, the dust particles are small, leading to high concentrations of PM10 and PM2.5 and all related health impacts.

Forecasts of concentrations of air pollution gases are presented in the third panel. Ozone (O₃) pollution in the lower troposphere is caused mainly in urban areas. Ozone can:

  • Make it more difficult to breathe deeply and vigorously
  • Cause shortness of breath, and pain when taking a deep breath
  • Cause coughing and sore or scratchy throat
  • Inflame and damage the breathing airways
  • Aggravate lung diseases such as asthma, emphysema, and chronic bronchitis
  • Increase the frequency of asthma attacks
  • Make the lungs more susceptible to infection
  • Continue to damage the lungs even when the symptoms have disappeared
  • Cause chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

Sulfur dioxide (SO₂) is a gas, which is invisible and has a nasty, sharp smell. It reacts easily with other substances to form harmful compounds, such as sulfuric acid, sulfurous acid and sulfate particles.

  • Short-term exposures to SO₂ can harm the human respiratory system and make breathing difficult.
  • SO₂ and other sulfur oxides can contribute to acid rain, which can harm sensitive ecosystems.
  • Children, the elderly, and those who suffer from asthma are particularly sensitive to effects of SO₂.

Nitrogen dioxide (NO₂) is a reddish-brown gas that has a characteristic sharp, biting odor and is a prominent air pollutant. The major source of nitrogen dioxide is the burning of fossil fuels: coal, oil and gas. Most of the nitrogen dioxide in cities comes from motor vehicle exhaust. Nitrogen dioxide is an important air pollutant because it contributes to the formation of ozone, which can have significant impacts on human health.

  • NO₂ inflames the lining of the lungs, and it can reduce immunity to lung infections
  • NO₂ causes problems such as wheezing, coughing, colds, flu and bronchitis

For Europe, the air pollution meteogram has a fourth panel, showing the pollen forecast for San Jose.

Birch pollen is one of the most common airborne allergens during springtime, or later in the year in higher latitudes. As the trees bloom, they release tiny grains of pollen that are scattered by the wind. A single birch tree can produce up to five million pollen grains. Pollen is dispersed by air currents and can be transported over large distances. We thus show the pollen forecast overlayed with the 10 m wind speed.

Grass pollen are the primary trigger of pollen allergies during the summer months. They cause some of the most severe and difficult-to-treat symptoms. In humid climates, the grass pollen season lasts several months. In drier climates the grass pollen season is significantly shorter, as are the birch and olive pollen season.

Precipitation can clean the air from pollen, but if it is associated with thunderstorms, the strong winds initially increase the pollen concentration.

Disclaimer

Neither the European Commission nor ECMWF nor meteoblue is responsible for any use that may be made of the forecast information presented here. Predictions are issued from an atmospheric model with 12 km resolution. Outputs may not be correlated enough with real concentrations. Please consult your local air quality agency, especially in the case of a pollution peak or a pollution alert.

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Источник: https://www.meteoblue.com/en/weather/outdoorsports/airquality/san-jose_united-states-of-america_5392171

How toxic wildfire smoke affects pregnant people

NAPA, Calif.—Sonny, a 10-month old, crawls through the tunnel of a playground surrounded by fresh cedar wood chips as the sun sets in October. His 4-year-old sister, Lenny, climbs the rungs of the jungle gym as their parents, Rebecca and Omar Chowaiki, keep watch.


"He is the happiest baby. He is so smiley," Rebecca Chowaiki said of her son. "We named him Sonny because it was a hard pregnancy, and we knew there would be some obstacles he needed to get over, so we wanted him to have a sunny disposition."

Sonny was diagnosed with a condition called bilateral clubfoot. A specialist put casts on his feet, he underwent surgery to cut his achilles tendon, and he wore orthotic shoes connected by a bar. He also received physical therapy for another condition called hypotonia, which meant he slouched when sitting and his head drooped. This amounted to months of medical appointments. "You just take it as it comes," his mother said.

Related: How wildfires impact your health

Smoking cigarettes during pregnancy can significantly increase the risk of a baby having clubfoot, but Sonny's mother has never smoked a cigarette. "We've been breathing in buildings burning for the last four years," she told EHN. "We've all been smoking in one way or another."

The sky is blue today, but the grass and shrubs are crisp as kindling. Officials declared red flag warnings in recent weeks, meaning the dry and windy conditions are perfect for wildfires to ignite and rapidly spread. "When that happens, we brace ourselves," Chowaiki said.

Since 2017, wildfires have swept Napa and nearby Sonoma each fall. The summers are hotter and last longer, and rain is less frequent. The fires have cast a thick fog of smoke over the region, lasting for weeks or months. Chowaiki breathed the smoke in 2017, 2018, and 2019 leading up to Sonny's conception.

A hill rises behind the playground. Chowaiki can see it from her kitchen window. It's a source of anxiety for her — fires have reached the other side of the hill in previous years.

"It's really scary. There's a lot of PTSD. You go to sleep thinking: 'OK, if I have to wake up suddenly and I see the hill is on fire behind me, I'll tell my husband, you grab our daughter, I'll grab our son, and we'll just hope that the dogs follow us.' "

Chowaiki doesn't draw a direct link between Sonny's condition and the wildfires — "we don't live in a vacuum," she said — but she recently enrolled in a study at the University of California, Davis, that is examining birth outcomes of people exposed to wildfire smoke. After years of inhaling the stuff, she is curious how it affected her body and child.

Climate change-fueled fires in California are increasing in severity every year, blanketing the western U.S. and Canada in ominous smoke that can be seen from space. Since the 1970s, California's average summer temperatures have increased by 1.4 degrees Celsius, and the state has seen a five-fold increase in acreage burned, according to a Reuters data analysis. Some parts of California now experience double the number of fire weather days per year compared to the 1970s, according to Climate Central. Wildfire smoke is reaching further across the continent, as far as Toronto and New York in summer 2021. As both wildfires and populations grow, more people are exposed to smoke that contains plastics, heavy metals from burned buildings and vehicles, and tiny, dangerous particles that can travel deep into the lungs and enter the bloodstream. Scientists know that wildfire smoke increases the risk of asthma for children, and heart disease, heart attack, stroke and death for adults.

Now scientists believe smoke and stress from wildfires also likely play a role in adverse pregnancy outcomes, such as low birth weight, preterm births — and even miscarriages.

Wildfire smoke and birth outcomes

wildfire smoke

Tinted orange by wildfire smoke from Oregon and southern Washington, the sun lowers behind a hill in Kalama, Washington on September 9, 2020. Across the state line, in Oregon, officials have given Level 3 "go now" evacuation notices to at least half of Clackamas County due to multiple wildfires. (Credit: David Ryder)

Each year, of the 3.75 million live births in the U.S., about 500,000 babies are born prematurely and 120,000 babies have birth defects, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Nonsmoking pregnant people who are exposed to tobacco smoke have a higher risk of preterm birth, low birthweight, and miscarriage, the CDC says. Air pollution can also contribute to low birthweight or preterm birth, even at levels below the federal Environmental Protection Agency's standards.

About an hour's drive from Napa, scientists are investigating whether to add wildfire smoke to the list of risk factors for adverse birth outcomes. In the city of Davis, California, about 4,000 rhesus macaques, a primate roughly the size of a housecat, live in dozens of outdoor cages as big as gymnasiums. Since the 1960s, the California National Primate Research Center has studied the monkeys because they are biologically close to humans. But recently the primates became the subject of unplanned research released in September.

In November 2018, at the peak of monkey mating season, smoke from the Camp Fire about 100 miles away cloaked the cages. Researchers followed the monkeys' pregnancies, and when it was time to give birth in the spring, they found the primates exposed to smoke had a higher rate of miscarriages.

In the nine previous years, the monkeys breathing clean air had an average live birth rate of 90%. The monkeys exposed to wildfire smoke in 2018 had a live birth rate of 82%— an 8% drop.

Bryn Willson, an OB/GYN resident at UC Davis and lead researcher on the primate paper, told EHN she was surprised the effect wasn't worse. "There were still several primates that got pregnant right at the peak of poor air quality, and they went on to deliver healthy [babies]," she told EHN. Willson said another team of researchers plans to follow the monkeys born after the 2018 wildfires to see how the smoke affects them long-term.

The monkey study is part of an emerging body of research.

wildfire smoke

A crow is silhouetted by the sun, which is tinted orange from wildfire smoke, on September 11, 2020 in Medford, Oregon. Hundreds of homes in nearby towns have been lost due to wildfire. (Credit: David Ryder)

In 2012, UC Berkeley scientists found that the 2003 southern California wildfires were associated with a slightly reduced birth weight, and in 2019, research by the Colorado School of Public Health linked wildfire smoke to preterm births. Low birth weight is associated with a higher risk of infant mortality, and disease or inhibited cognitive development later in life. Babies born too early can have learning disabilities and visual and hearing conditions, according to the World Health Organization.

New research suggests wildfire smoke may increase the risk of miscarriages for humans, too.

In an unpublished paper currently under peer review, Stanford researchers looked at data to see if the apocalyptic 2020 wildfire smoke that turned day to night on the west coast correlated with the number of people experiencing miscarriages at the Stanford ER near San Jose, California. Compared to years with no smoke, they found that the likelihood of a lost pregnancy during the 2020 wildfire smoke event increased by 29%.

"They're big numbers," Marshall Burke, who co-authored the paper with lead researcher Bibek Paudel, told EHN. Burke also contributed to a previous paper that found that one day of medium- to high-intensity wildfire smoke exposure increased the likelihood of preterm birth by 1%, meaning that two weeks of exposure led to a 14% increase in likelihood of preterm birth. "It's consistent with our other paper," he said of the ER data. "In-utero exposure to wildfire smoke can dramatically worsen birth outcomes."

Burke said it's "absolutely possible" that smoke contributed to Sonny's condition, and Chowaiki is right to be curious. "I don't think we have the smoking gun study on birth defects in particular, but everything we've found about the effects of wildfire smoke on pregnancy outcomes suggests that it could have a range of negative outcomes."

While policy changes over the last 30 years have decreased dangerous air pollution from vehicles and industry in California, Burke said megafires are now contributing a larger proportion of that poor air quality — about half the air pollution in the state. "The state overall has seen pretty impressive declines in exposures to these pollutants, [but] wildfires are pushing in the other direction," Burke said. "They are increasing exposures again."

What does wildfire smoke do to our bodies?

Rebecca Schmidt, associate professor at the UC Davis School of Medicine, is in the midst of a study following people who were pregnant during the megafires in 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020. Chowaiki enrolled in her study.

"Our hope is to be able to follow the kids from these pregnancies as they get older and look at various outcomes, because there has been very little done [on respiratory outcomes later in life]," Schmidt told EHN.

Schmidt is sampling participants' hair for heavy metals that could be from the wildfires. She is also collecting placentas for testing.

An Australian doctor found that placentas of people who were pregnant during wildfires looked similar to those of people who had smoked a pack a day of cigarettes, but Schmidt hasn't seen anything like that in California placentas. "It hasn't been replicated yet, and it was a small study, but it does give pause on, is this something we should be concerned about?" she said.

Scientists don't know how wildfire smoke might affect fetuses in the womb, but they have some theories.

Similar to cars and industrial plants, wildfires emit tiny particles like PM 2.5 and PM 0.1 that are so small they can cross from the lungs into the bloodstream and travel all over the body. "They tend to give rides to other contaminants," Schmidt said. "Things like heavy metals piggyback on those small particles and also get deep into the lungs and other places. And that causes inflammation. In general it's not good to have inflammation for health."

Schmidt said inflammation from infection can disrupt the placenta and lead to issues like preterm delivery, low birth weight, and stillbirth.

Willson has a theory, too. The Camp Fire that blanketed the monkey cages in smoke was the most destructive fire in California history, incinerating more than 18,000 buildings. Sampling from the Camp Fire smoke showed it contained oxidized organic material from burnt trees and also phthalates, which are known to disrupt endocrine pathways in the body, affecting metabolism and damaging DNA, from burnt furniture and buildings. Phthalates have been linked to abnormal fetal development and adverse outcomes after birth.

"When buildings are burned and furniture is burned, you release into the atmosphere other toxic compounds that include things like phthalates, which we know are not good for humans to breathe in," Willson said.

Willson said pollutants like PM 2.5, PM 0.1, and phthalates may cross the placenta, but more research is needed to confirm this.

Stress from wildfires

wildfire smoke children

Rebecca Chowaiki holds her son, Sonny, at a park near their home in Napa, California on October 9, 2021. (Credit: David Ryder)

Schmidt surveyed parents about their symptoms from the wildfires. Short-term effects included coughing, irritated eyes, and sore throat. But one of the most common symptoms was long-term stress and anxiety from proximity to wildfires. "Even up to a year later, they were still experiencing a high level of stress and anxiety," she said.

Stress can ramp up inflammation in a similar way to smoke, she explained, meaning pregnant people could face double exposure from smoke and mental health impacts. She pointed to a study showing that stress is a risk factor for outcomes like preterm delivery.

Chowaiki said her pregnancy with Sonny was "extremely stressful" due to the pandemic and in-utero diagnosis of his bilateral clubfoot.

She also feels climate anxiety. Her daughter Lenny was born prematurely during the fall 2017 wildfires. While she was in the ICU, the hospital briefly lost power. Since then, whole towns in California have burned to the ground. "I know so many people at this point who have lost their homes," she said. She knows her home may not be here next year.

Protecting pregnant people from wildfire smoke

wildfire children health

Rebecca Chowaiki and Omar Chowaiki pose for a portrait with their son, Sonny, and daughter, Lenny, at their home in Napa, California on October 9, 2021. (Credit: David Ryder)

Burke recommended that people stay inside when it's smokey, close windows and doors, and invest in indoor air filtration. If they can't filter the entire house, they should filter one room and stay in there as much as possible. He extended this advice to people living far away from fires; in summer 2021, smoke from wildfires drifted across the continent into cities like Toronto, Boston, and New York.

Burke acknowledged that not everyone can afford to filter indoor air, and some people work outside, like construction and agricultural employees. In that case, he said N-95 masks can help reduce exposure to smoke, but employers and regulators must take responsibility for protecting workers, whether it's from heat waves or wildfires.

"It's our broader responsibility to limit their exposures — that means reducing the amount of wildfire smoke in the air. That's the fundamental thing we need to do," he said.

In wildfire season, Chowaiki checks the air quality from different sources so she knows when to stay inside. If she has to go outside in the smoke, she wears an N-95 mask.

"If you put a frog into boiling water, it's going to jump out, but if you put a frog into water and you heat it up slowly, it will stay there until it dies," Chowaiki said. "I feel like that's what we're doing. We're allowing this to become our normal, and it never should have been normal."

Banner photo: Sonny Chowaiki sits in the arms of his mother, Rebecca, at a park near their home in Napa, California on October 9, 2021. (Credit: David Ryder)

Источник: https://www.ehn.org/wildfire-smoke-births-2655744649.html
Public Schools

By Lorraine Gabbert, San Jose Spotlight

November 26, 2021

Cambrian Park Plaza is a step closer to redevelopment with the release of its draft environmental report.

Located at the intersection of Union and Camden avenues in San Jose with its iconic carousel sign, the reimagined single-story shopping center, which dates back to the 1950s, is a long way from approval. An estimated completion date for the proposed urban village design is not expected until June 2026.

The project is complex and complicated. It requires annexation from Santa Clara County into San Jose, which will begin review in mid-2022. This will place the development into District 9, represented by San Jose Councilmember Pam Foley. The 18-acre development also requires an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) to address noise and air pollution, traffic and the impacts on land, vegetation and wildlife. Residents have 45 days for public comment between Nov. 12 and Jan. 3.

The design will include 305 apartments, 48 single-family homes with 27 attached accessory dwelling units and 25 townhomes. The village will also provide a 229-room hotel, a senior living center and four acres of open space. Foley has requested the developer build affordable housing.

Alex Shoor, executive director of Catalyze SV, which advocates for sustainable, equitable and vibrant places, said its members would like to see the village include a sports facility, public Wi-Fi and more open space. Although the group appreciates the vibrancy it will bring, it strongly objects to the lack of affordable housing.

"A project this big, this important, with this much land and this many different types of buildings absolutely needs and should have affordable housing on-site," Shoor told San José Spotlight.

The draft EIR found "no significant and unavoidable impacts" to the environment or utility systems from this project. It states all impacts can be reduced to "less-than significant" under California Environmental Quality Act standards by implementing proper mitigation measures.

Some residents remain skeptical. Marylyn Anderson, who has lived in the area for 38 years, said the complex will overwhelm the neighborhood and utilities.

"Every unit requires more electricity and water," she said. "We don't have enough water now and have constant brownouts."

Other residents in the area worry about traffic and the overall aesthetics of the neighborhood.

Peter Clarke, a member of Friends of Cambrian Park Plaza, said residents would like to see lower building heights and have concerns about increased traffic from commuters. He said it's unlikely people who can afford to live at the village will choose public transportation rather than drive. Clarke also doesn't agree with the city's plans to add a cut-through street through the proposed park.

"We'd like families to be able to let kids run around without worrying there's a speeding car coming," he said.

Monica Mallon, chair of the Cambrian Community Council and San José Spotlight transportation columnist, said the planned retail and park will attract people in the surrounding areas, creating traffic issues. She said residents are also unhappy with the proposed height of the buildings and want them to be one or two stories.

"In Cambrian, there aren't a lot of tall buildings," she said. "I live in a two-story building, and it stands out."

The purpose of the EIR is to have a conversation, Foley said. She's hosting a virtual town hall at 6:30 p.m. on Dec. 13, and will be joined by city staff and the project's developers to provide information and answer questions.

"It's an opportunity to gain feedback," Foley told San José Spotlight. "It's important we listen to our community and work with them on what they'd like to see. We need to be thoughtful and hear people's concerns."

Cambrian Park Plaza is under new ownership as Weingarten Realty was recently acquired by Kimco Realty Corp., but Kimco has retained Weingarten to continue the plaza's revitalization.

Since 2019, Weingarten has worked closely with Foley's office on redesigning the plaza based on resident feedback, Foley said. This includes moving taller buildings to the corner, creating underground parking for 1,000 cars to make the space more inviting and preserving the beloved carousel sign.

Foley envisions the redeveloped Cambrian Park Plaza as a walkable community gathering place.

"This is a wonderful opportunity to create housing and commercial uses in a signature project," she said. "It's going to be the gateway to Cambrian."

Contact Lorraine Gabbert at [email protected]


San José Spotlight is the city's first nonprofit news organization dedicated to independent political and business reporting. Please support our public service journalism by clicking here.

Источник: https://patch.com/california/campbell/san-joses-cambrian-park-plaza-inches-toward-redevelopment
Zip Codes san jose air quality today
meteoblue

The top panel shows the forecast for the Common Air Quality Index (CAQI) used in Europe since 2006. It is a number on a scale from 1 to 100, where a low value (green colors) means good air quality and a high value (red colors) means bad air quality. CAQI colour-coding is used in all air pollution forecast panels of the meteogram to indicate the level of pollution. For the pollen forecast there are no official guidelines for color-coding, as pollen are not part of the Air Quality Index forecast. The Air Quality index is defined separately near roads (“roadside” index) or away from roads ("background" index). meteoblue uses the background index, because weather models can not reproduce small-scale differences along the roads. Therefore, measurements along roads will show higher values than forecast here.

The second panel shows the forecast of particles (PM and desert dust) for San Jose. Atmospheric particulate matter (PM) are microscopic solid or liquid matter suspended in the air. Sources of particulate matter can be san jose air quality today or anthropogenic. Of greatest concern to public health are the particles small enough to be inhaled into the deepest parts of the lung. These particles are less than 10 microns in diameter (approximately 1/7th the thickness of the a human hair) and are defined as PM10. They are a mixture of materials that can include smoke, soot, dust, salt, acids, and metals. Particulate matter also forms when gases emitted from motor vehicles and industry undergo chemical reactions in the atmosphere. PM10 is visible by eye as the haze that we think of as smog. PM10 are among the most harmful of all air pollutants.

  • PM10 can increase the number and severity of asthma attacks
  • PM10 causes or aggravate bronchitis and other lung diseases
  • PM10 reduces the body's ability to fight infections

PM10 includes fine particulate matter defined as PM2.5, which are fine particles with a diameter of 2.5 μm or less. The biggest impact of particulate air pollution on public health is understood to be from long-term exposure to PM2.5:

  • PM2.5 increases the age-specific mortality risk, particularly from cardiovascular causes.

Desert Dust consists of particles smaller than 62 μm originating in deserts. Often, the dust particles are small, leading to high concentrations of PM10 and PM2.5 and all related health impacts.

Forecasts of concentrations of air pollution gases are presented in the third panel. Ozone (O₃) pollution in the lower troposphere is caused mainly in urban areas. Ozone can:

  • Make it more difficult to breathe deeply and vigorously
  • Cause shortness of breath, and pain when taking a deep breath
  • Cause coughing and sore or scratchy throat
  • Inflame and damage the breathing airways
  • Aggravate lung diseases such as asthma, emphysema, and chronic bronchitis
  • Increase the frequency of asthma attacks
  • Make the lungs more susceptible to infection
  • Continue to damage the lungs even when the symptoms have disappeared
  • Cause chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

Sulfur dioxide (SO₂) is a gas, which is invisible and has a nasty, sharp smell. It reacts easily with other substances to form harmful compounds, such as sulfuric acid, sulfurous acid and sulfate particles.

  • Short-term exposures to SO₂ can harm the human respiratory system and make breathing difficult.
  • SO₂ and other sulfur oxides can contribute to acid rain, which can harm sensitive ecosystems.
  • Children, the elderly, and those who suffer from asthma are particularly sensitive to effects of SO₂.

Nitrogen dioxide (NO₂) is a reddish-brown gas that has a characteristic sharp, biting odor and is a prominent air pollutant. The major source of nitrogen dioxide is the burning of fossil fuels: coal, oil and gas. Most of the nitrogen dioxide in cities comes from motor vehicle exhaust. Nitrogen dioxide is an important air pollutant because it contributes to the formation of ozone, which can have significant impacts on human health.

  • NO₂ inflames the lining of the lungs, and it can reduce immunity to lung infections
  • NO₂ causes problems such as wheezing, coughing, colds, flu and bronchitis

For Europe, the air pollution meteogram has a fourth panel, showing the pollen forecast for San Jose.

Birch pollen is one of the most common airborne allergens during springtime, or later in the year in higher latitudes. As the trees bloom, they release tiny grains of pollen that are scattered by the wind. A single birch tree can produce up to five million pollen grains. Pollen is dispersed by air currents and can be transported over large distances. We thus show the pollen forecast overlayed with the 10 m wind speed.

Grass pollen are the primary trigger of pollen allergies during the summer months. They cause some of the most severe and difficult-to-treat symptoms. In humid climates, the grass pollen season lasts several months. In drier climates the grass pollen season is significantly shorter, as are the birch and olive san jose air quality today season.

Precipitation can clean the air from td bank canada credit card login, but if it is associated with thunderstorms, the strong winds initially increase the pollen concentration.

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Источник: https://www.meteoblue.com/en/weather/outdoorsports/airquality/san-jose_united-states-of-america_5392171
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Lab equipment store near me

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How toxic wildfire smoke affects pregnant people

NAPA, Calif.—Sonny, a 10-month old, crawls through san jose air quality today tunnel of a playground surrounded by fresh cedar wood chips as the sun sets in October. His 4-year-old sister, Lenny, climbs the rungs of the jungle gym as their parents, Rebecca and Omar Chowaiki, keep watch.


"He is the happiest baby. He is so smiley," Rebecca Chowaiki said of her son. "We named him Sonny because it was a hard pregnancy, and we knew there would be some obstacles he needed to get over, so we wanted him to have a sunny disposition."

Sonny was diagnosed with a condition called bilateral clubfoot. A specialist put casts on his feet, he underwent surgery to cut his achilles tendon, and he wore orthotic shoes connected by a bar. He also received physical therapy for another condition called hypotonia, which meant he slouched when sitting and his head drooped. This amounted to months of medical appointments. "You just take it as it comes," his mother said.

Related: How wildfires impact your health

Smoking cigarettes during pregnancy can significantly increase the risk of a baby having clubfoot, but Sonny's mother has never smoked a cigarette. "We've been breathing in buildings burning for the last four years," she told EHN. "We've all been smoking in one way or another."

The sky is blue today, but the grass and shrubs are crisp as kindling. Officials declared red flag warnings in recent weeks, meaning the dry and windy conditions are perfect for wildfires to ignite and rapidly spread. "When that happens, we brace ourselves," Chowaiki said.

Since 2017, wildfires have swept Napa and nearby Sonoma each fall. The summers are hotter and last longer, and rain is less frequent. The fires have cast a thick fog of smoke over the region, lasting for weeks or months. Chowaiki breathed the smoke in 2017, 2018, and 2019 leading up to Sonny's conception.

A hill rises behind the playground. Chowaiki can see it from her kitchen window. It's a source of anxiety for her — fires have reached the other side of the hill in previous years.

"It's really scary. There's a lot of PTSD. You go to sleep thinking: 'OK, if I have to wake up suddenly and San jose air quality today see the hill is on fire behind me, I'll tell my husband, you grab our daughter, I'll grab our son, and we'll just hope that the dogs follow us.' "

Chowaiki doesn't draw a direct link between Sonny's condition and the wildfires — "we don't live in a vacuum," she said — but she recently enrolled in a study at the University of California, Davis, that is examining birth outcomes of people exposed to wildfire smoke. After years of inhaling the stuff, she is curious how it affected her body and child.

Climate change-fueled fires in California are increasing in severity every year, blanketing the western U.S. and Canada in ominous smoke that can be seen from space. Since the 1970s, California's average summer temperatures have increased by 1.4 degrees Celsius, and the state has seen a five-fold increase san jose air quality today acreage burned, according to a Reuters data analysis. Some parts of California now experience double the number of fire weather days per year compared to the 1970s, according to Climate Central. Wildfire smoke is reaching further across the continent, as far as Toronto and New York in summer 2021. As both wildfires and populations grow, more people are exposed to smoke that contains plastics, heavy metals from burned buildings and vehicles, and tiny, dangerous particles that can travel deep into the lungs and enter the bloodstream. Scientists know that wildfire smoke increases the risk of asthma for children, and heart disease, heart attack, stroke and death for adults.

Now scientists believe smoke and stress from wildfires also likely play a role in adverse pregnancy outcomes, such as low birth weight, preterm births — and even miscarriages.

Wildfire smoke and birth outcomes

wildfire smoke

Tinted orange by wildfire smoke from Oregon and southern Washington, the sun lowers behind a hill in Kalama, Washington on September 9, 2020. Across the state line, in Oregon, officials have given Level 3 "go now" evacuation notices to at least half of Clackamas County due to multiple wildfires. (Credit: David Ryder)

Each year, of the 3.75 million live births in the U.S., about 500,000 senior citizen card application form online haryana are born prematurely and 120,000 babies have birth defects, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Nonsmoking pregnant people who are exposed to tobacco smoke have a higher risk of preterm birth, low birthweight, and miscarriage, the CDC says. Air pollution can also contribute to low birthweight or preterm birth, even at levels below the federal Environmental Protection Agency's standards.

About an hour's drive from Napa, scientists are investigating whether to add wildfire smoke to the list of risk factors for adverse birth outcomes. In the city of Davis, California, about 4,000 rhesus macaques, a primate roughly the size of a housecat, live in dozens of outdoor cages as big as gymnasiums. Since the 1960s, the California National Primate Research Center has studied the monkeys because they are biologically close to humans. But recently the primates became the subject of unplanned research released in September.

In November 2018, at the peak of monkey mating season, smoke from the Camp Fire about 100 miles away cloaked the cages. Researchers followed the monkeys' pregnancies, and when it was time to give birth in the spring, they found the primates exposed to smoke had a higher rate of miscarriages.

In the nine previous years, the monkeys breathing clean air had an average live birth rate of 90%. The monkeys exposed to wildfire smoke in 2018 had a live birth rate of 82%— an 8% drop.

Bryn Willson, an OB/GYN resident at UC Davis and lead researcher on the primate paper, told EHN she was surprised the effect wasn't worse. "There were still several primates that got pregnant right at the peak of poor air quality, and they went on to deliver healthy [babies]," she told EHN. Willson said another team of researchers plans to follow the monkeys born after the 2018 wildfires to see how the smoke affects them long-term.

The monkey study is part of an emerging body of research.

wildfire smoke

A crow is silhouetted by the sun, which is tinted orange from wildfire smoke, on September 11, 2020 in Medford, Oregon. Hundreds of homes in nearby towns have been lost due to wildfire. (Credit: David Ryder)

In 2012, UC Berkeley scientists found that the 2003 southern California wildfires were associated with a slightly reduced birth weight, and in 2019, research by the Colorado School of Public Health linked wildfire smoke to preterm births. Low birth weight is associated with a higher risk of infant mortality, and disease or inhibited cognitive development later in life. Babies born too early can have learning disabilities and visual and hearing conditions, according to the World Health Organization.

New research suggests wildfire smoke may increase the risk of miscarriages for humans, too.

In an unpublished paper currently under peer review, Stanford researchers looked at data to see if the apocalyptic 2020 wildfire smoke that turned day to night on the west coast correlated with the number of people experiencing miscarriages at the Stanford ER near San Jose, California. Compared to years with no smoke, they found that the likelihood of a lost pregnancy during the 2020 wildfire smoke event increased by 29%.

"They're big numbers," Marshall Burke, who co-authored the paper with lead researcher Bibek Paudel, told EHN. Burke also contributed to a previous paper that found that one day of medium- to high-intensity wildfire smoke exposure increased the likelihood of preterm birth by 1%, meaning that two weeks of exposure led to a 14% increase in likelihood of preterm birth. "It's consistent with our other paper," he said of the ER data. "In-utero exposure to wildfire smoke can dramatically worsen birth outcomes."

Burke said it's "absolutely possible" that smoke contributed to Sonny's condition, and Chowaiki is right to be curious. "I don't think we have the smoking gun study on birth glenview state bank review in particular, but everything we've found about the effects of wildfire smoke on pregnancy outcomes suggests that it could have a range of negative outcomes."

While policy changes over the last 30 years have decreased dangerous air pollution from vehicles and industry in California, Burke said megafires are now contributing a larger proportion of that poor air quality — about half the air pollution in the state. "The state overall has seen pretty impressive declines in exposures to these pollutants, [but] wildfires are pushing in the other direction," Burke said. "They are increasing exposures again."

What does wildfire smoke do to our bodies?

Rebecca Schmidt, associate professor at the UC Davis School of Medicine, is in the midst of a study following people who were pregnant during the megafires in 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020. Chowaiki enrolled in san jose air quality today study.

"Our hope is to be able to follow the kids from these pregnancies as they get older and look at various outcomes, because there has been very little done [on respiratory outcomes later in life]," Schmidt told EHN.

Schmidt is sampling participants' hair for heavy metals that could be from the wildfires. She is also collecting placentas for testing.

An Australian doctor found that placentas of people who were pregnant during wildfires looked similar to those of people who had smoked a pack a day of cigarettes, but Schmidt hasn't seen anything like that in California placentas. "It hasn't been replicated yet, and it was a small study, but it does give pause on, san jose air quality today this something we should be concerned about?" she said.

Scientists don't know how wildfire smoke might affect fetuses in the womb, but they have some theories.

Similar to cars and industrial plants, wildfires emit tiny particles like PM 2.5 and PM 0.1 that are so small they can cross from the lungs into the bloodstream and travel all over the body. "They tend to give rides to other contaminants," Schmidt said. "Things like heavy metals piggyback on those small particles and also get deep into the lungs and other places. And that causes inflammation. In general it's not good to have inflammation for health."

Schmidt said inflammation from infection can disrupt the placenta and lead to issues like preterm delivery, low birth weight, and stillbirth.

Willson has a theory, too. The Camp Fire that blanketed the monkey cages in smoke was the most destructive fire in California history, incinerating more than 18,000 buildings. Sampling from the Camp Fire smoke showed it contained oxidized organic material from burnt trees and also phthalates, which are known to disrupt endocrine pathways in the body, affecting metabolism and damaging DNA, from burnt furniture and buildings. Phthalates have been linked to abnormal fetal development and adverse outcomes after birth.

"When buildings are burned and furniture is burned, you release into the atmosphere other toxic compounds that include things like phthalates, which we know are not good for humans to breathe in," Willson said.

Willson said pollutants like PM 2.5, PM 0.1, and phthalates may cross the placenta, but more research is needed san jose air quality today confirm this.

Stress from wildfires

wildfire smoke children

Rebecca Chowaiki holds her son, Sonny, at a park near their home in Napa, California on October 9, 2021. (Credit: David Ryder)

Schmidt surveyed parents about their symptoms from the wildfires. Short-term effects included coughing, irritated eyes, and sore throat. But one of the most common symptoms was long-term stress and anxiety from proximity to wildfires. "Even up to a year later, they were still experiencing a high level of stress and anxiety," she said.

Stress can ramp up inflammation in a similar way to smoke, she explained, meaning pregnant people could face double exposure from smoke and mental health impacts. She pointed to a study showing that stress is a risk factor for outcomes like preterm delivery.

Chowaiki said her pregnancy with Sonny was "extremely stressful" due to the pandemic and in-utero diagnosis of his bilateral clubfoot.

She also feels climate anxiety. Her daughter Lenny was born prematurely during the fall 2017 wildfires. While she was in the ICU, the hospital briefly lost power. Since then, whole towns in California have burned to the ground. "I know so many people at this point who have lost their homes," she said. She knows her home may not be here next year.

Protecting pregnant people from wildfire smoke

wildfire children health

Rebecca Chowaiki and Omar Chowaiki pose for a portrait with their son, Sonny, and daughter, Lenny, at their home in Napa, California on October 9, 2021. (Credit: David Ryder)

Burke recommended that people stay inside when it's smokey, close windows and doors, and san jose air quality today in indoor air filtration. If they can't filter the entire house, they should filter one room and stay in there as much as possible. He extended this advice to people living far away from fires; in summer 2021, smoke from wildfires drifted across the continent into cities like Toronto, Boston, and New York.

Burke acknowledged that not everyone can afford to filter indoor air, and some people work outside, like construction and agricultural employees. In that case, he said N-95 masks can help reduce exposure to smoke, but employers and regulators must take responsibility for protecting workers, whether it's from heat waves or wildfires.

"It's our broader responsibility to limit their exposures — that means reducing the amount of wildfire smoke in the air. That's the fundamental thing we need to do," he said.

In wildfire season, Chowaiki checks the air quality from different sources so she knows when to stay inside. If she has to go outside in the smoke, she wears an N-95 mask.

"If you put a frog into boiling water, it's going to jump out, but if you put a frog into water and you heat it up slowly, it will stay there until it dies," Chowaiki said. "I feel like that's what we're doing. We're allowing this to become our normal, and it never should have been normal."

Banner photo: Sonny Chowaiki sits in the arms of his mother, Rebecca, at a park near their home in Napa, California on October 9, 2021. (Credit: David Ryder)

Источник: https://www.ehn.org/wildfire-smoke-births-2655744649.html

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