Navigation Links
PA DEP Finds Air Quality Around Schools to be Safe
Date:2/27/2009

Findings Refute USA Today Report

HARRISBURG, Pa., Feb. 27 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Department of Environmental Protection today reported it found no unsafe levels of air pollutants or metals after extensively examining air quality samples taken recently near four Pennsylvania schools.

Environmental Protection acting Secretary John Hanger said that the results of DEP's in-depth monitoring refute reports by USA Today in December 2008 that relied only on a "snapshot" measurement approach at three of the schools. DEP sampled the air at a fourth school at the request of district officials.

"The quality of the air Pennsylvania's children breathe is a top concern," Hanger said. "When USA Today suggested there was a potential problem, we immediately set out to verify their findings, but have been unable to do so. We simply have not found the levels of pollutants the newspaper's testing seemed to indicate.

"While that's the case, we plan to continue monitoring at certain schools for a limited period so we can further substantiate our findings and ensure the safety of these communities and their citizens."

Using federally accepted scientific protocols, DEP placed air quality monitors directly at the school buildings and tested samples collected over several weeks.

In contrast, USA Today sampled only once over several days and did not indicate the locations of their monitors and their distance from the schools. Some monitors were placed at the homes of volunteers and others at the offices of affiliated newspapers near the schools, the newspaper said.

"Our testing found the total excess lifetime cancer risk from exposure to pollutants at these schools is within the acceptable range identified by the Environmental Protection Agency," Hanger said. "Any health risk to a child, of course, is difficult for a parent to accept, which is why we are so committed to reducing air pollution not only in the area around these schools, but everywhere across the commonwealth."

The schools DEP monitored and the primary pollutants identified by USA Today's snapshot testing at each respective location are:

  • Midland Elementary/Middle School, Beaver County; chromium and manganese
  • Wayne Middle School, Erie County; benzene and naphthalene
  • Stony Brook Elementary School, York County; benzene and chromium.
  • Phoenixville Area Kindergarten Center, Chester County. Although USA Today did not conduct snapshot testing there, the newspaper used a comparative risk model to label the area around the school as a high-pollution zone, identifying chromium and nickel as the pollutants of concern.

The Allegheny County Health Department took air samples at Highlands High School in Natrona Heights, where USA Today identified chromium as a pollutant of concern. The county is also collecting samples at the Montessori Children's School in Bridgeville and the Sto-Rox schools in McKees Rocks.

At each school where DEP monitored the air quality, the department calculated the excess lifetime cancer risk, or the risk above the general overall cancer risk of four in 10, from exposure to the pollutants of concern. These ranged from 4 in 100,000 at Stony Brook Elementary School to 5 in one million at Phoenixville Area Kindergarten Center.

The excess lifetime cancer risk is comparable to the state background level of 5.7 in 100,000, as determined by air toxics monitoring routinely conducted by the department. The EPA generally considers an excess lifetime cancer risk above one in 10,000 to be unacceptable.

DEP plans to continue monitoring at Midland for several months and will also conduct sampling at six other schools in areas with pollutants of concern identified by USA Today. Detailed reports on DEP's sampling studies can be found at the following links:

    CONTACT:
    Teresa Candori
    717-787-1323


'/>"/>
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Penn study finds pro-death proteins required to regulate healthy immune function
2. MRI finds breast cancer before it becomes dangerous
3. RAND finds cases of undiagnosed diabetes drop sharply
4. Children of depressed moms do better when dad is involved, SLU researcher finds
5. Ability to cope with stress can increase good cholesterol in older white men, study finds
6. Pitt study finds inequality in tobacco advertising
7. Study finds some kids are being misdiagnosed with asthma
8. Investigational Agent Targeting Metabotropic Glutamate 2/3 Receptors Demonstrates Antipsychotic Activity in Humans, Study in Nature Medicine Finds
9. Parents perceptions can hamper kids asthma care, study finds
10. Study finds primary care depression treatment often does not follow quality guidelines
11. Study of Studies Finds No Risk to Children From Phthalates in Toys
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:7/20/2017)... ... July 20, 2017 , ... ... IT operations analytics and application performance monitoring (APM) solutions, has expanded its ... services providers. , According to Peter Ohrenberger, sales director at Nastel, “We’ve ...
(Date:7/20/2017)... ... July 20, 2017 , ... ... platform, in which their iMedSecure™ comes included with each system installation. RMT’s ... images to remote participants for real-time collaboration and immediate decision-making requirements. While ...
(Date:7/20/2017)... ... July 20, 2017 , ... Vixiar ... non-invasive devices and systems for monitoring cardiopulmonary diseases, announced today that it has ... to complete regulatory submissions and fund final engineering and initial production of the ...
(Date:7/20/2017)... , ... July 20, 2017 , ... The Dermatology Clinic ... Dr. Dunbar received his BS in Biology from LSU, graduating summa cum laude. He ... Class President. After his residency in St. Louis, Dr. Dunbar moved to New York ...
(Date:7/20/2017)... CA (PRWEB) , ... July 20, 2017 , ... ... A Guide to the Business Architecture Body of Knowledge (BIZBOK® Guide )v 6.0 ... members who contributed to this effort through Guild collaborative teams. , Non-members may ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:7/14/2017)... , July 14, 2017 Endo International plc (NASDAQ: ... Tuesday, August 8, 2017.  Members of its senior management team will ... open at 8:30 a.m. ET. The dial-in number ... 497-0462, International (678) 509-7598, and the passcode is 45397076. Please dial ... A replay of the call will ...
(Date:7/12/2017)... is a revolutionary new product that relieves painful carpal tunnel syndrome ... affects more than 8 million people a year. Women suffer from ... methods of treating CTS are painful surgery, the use of NSAIDs ... ... a clear patch worn on the palm of the hand. It ...
(Date:7/11/2017)... , July 11, 2017  Sysmex America, Inc., ... diagnostic testing equipment as well as middleware information ... way to make quality assurance easier and more ... is well known for the innovation that it ... Monitor elevates quality assurance processes to a new ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: