Sunday, June 9, 2013

STOP: take a step... For a new healthy Air in Portland

According to The National Air Toxic Assessment’s (NATA) 2005 map, Portland has very high levels of Toxics exposed in the air which would affect and risk people’s health with dangerous diseases like cancer and other health issues if it didn't take the right steps to stop the causes (U.S enlivenment protection agency). I was shocked when I saw the map because I always thought Of Portland as one of a kind city known with its beautiful and healthy nature. We should start thinking about out future.

Through further search, I found Portland’s future Toxic Map simulation for 2017 done by the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) which reported the concentration of high levels of 15 Toxic pollutant emissions, some of them are ten times more than the normal Benchmark levels that has been spotted highly around metropolitan areas in Portland (DEQ PATS 2017 Pollutants Modelling Summery, 2011).

These Toxics emitted in the air are caused mostly by cars, trucks, diesel construction equipment, houses with wood stoves and industrial facilities. DEQ came out of with a study of solutions and recommendations to reduce air Toxic pollutants in Portland region depending on the source of emission (DEQ: Air Quality in Portland).

It grouped these sources to five categories which are the most causes for toxic air in Portland which are: Wood burning in residential areas, cars and trucks with diesel and gasoline engines, construction vehicles and industrial facilities. Each one of these causes investigated in how to lower its toxic emissions with proper development consultation, technical analysis, cost effectiveness and feasibility to ensure the proper act through it goals(DEQ). Some of these incentives and actions are:

Lowering the residential wood burning in heated dark red areas in map by working with the local community to meet the fine particles DEQs standards in these areas and implementing a survey to estimate the wood stoves that have higher emission than the benchmark. Make a campaign to rise the public awareness for the importance of a clean burning technics  Finding and evaluating a long funding way for setting a smoke density limits, wood stove change out and support new wood heating devices to be more used (DEQ).

Cars and trucks emissions using gasoline or diesel engines are the highest cause for toxic emissions especially in traffic and congestion areas, affecting 500 yards around them. DEQ approached to reduce these emissions 20 percent by 2035 (DEQ: Air Quality in Portlandwith adopting the California standards and improving traffic signals, promoting electrical vehicles and incorporate environmental decisions in transportation and land use planning. Trucks and buses using diesel engines were handled by financially supporting clean diesel projects and alternative fuel supporting like using Biodiesel blends to result in emitting less greenhouse gases.

The city of Portland made an interesting climate guide report in representing the main reasons that have to be changed and to be focused on. Which are us, we are responsible for more than the half of carbon and other greenhouse emissions by our behavioral, less care and abuse of nature. Do you know that 30% of local carbon emissions in Multnomah County in Portland were caused by people’s transportation? When you drive your car daily, your engine emotes toxic gases to the air effecting the environment and lastly affects your and my kids(City of Portland Bureau). The dearest ones to our hearts. So, if you  felt of the problem and want to do some action, here are some of the things that you can do:

First ,Instead of using a gasoline or diesel car, consider shifting to a gas efficient alternatively car like electrical, hybrid or biofuel car and depend more on doing your trips with Public transportation and your bike as you can. You will have healthy long life to see your grandchildren to play with(City of Portland Bureau).

Secondly, think more about what you are buying, 35 percent of carbon emission come from manufacturing and shipping the stuff we buy. Additionally, plant seasonal food in your garden which will help in reducing the emissions by trucks distributing goods in cities by sixteen percent. Rely on disposable goods and food that can be recycled(City of Portland Bureau).

At last, know that the heating, cooling and the way you use your home power result of twenty percent of carbon emissions in air. Save the energy and your wallet by using efficient and economical electricity devices in your home(City of Portland Bureau).

Do you know that a climate-friendly living house is less four times in carbon emission total than a typical house? (City of Portland Bureau) DEQ and city of Portland are doing major researches and studies to help in reducing air toxic pollutants. but it’s more a community problem were people have to be aware of the importance of our air value, so we can together in saving our Portland.

"2005 NATA tract level total cancer risk." United States Environmental Energy Portection Agency . Picture, n.d. Web. 7 June 2013. <>.
"2011 Oregon Air Quality Data Summaries report." department of energy - Oregon. DEQ, n.d. Web. 7 June 2013. <>.
"Portland Air Toxics Solutions Report and Recommendations." department of energy- Oregon. DEQ, n.d. Web. 7 June 2013. <>.
"Portland air toxic solutions." pic department of environmental quality. N.p., n.d. Web. 7 June 2013. <>.
"Portland climate action now." Portland on line . city of portland, n.d. Web. 7 June 2013. <>.
Profita, Cassandra. "Mapping Portland’s Everyday Air Toxics  » News » OPB."    Television, radio, and news for Oregon and Southwest Washington » OPB. N.p., 25 May 2012. Web. 7 June 2013. <>.
PATS 2017 Pollutant Modeling Summary . (2011, January 25). DEQ . Retrieved June 9, 2013, from

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