fine particles

Tiny particles of pollution - inside samples of brain tissue - could be contributing to diseases such as Alzheimer's, according to new research.

The study, led by scientists at Lancaster University, raises a host of new questions about the health risks of air pollution.

Our Science Editor David Shukman assesses its findings.


Real time monitoring of public health during two periods of high air pollution in the UK showed that there were an estimated 3 500 extra healthcare visits for acute respiratory symptoms and approximately 500 for severe asthma during these spells in 2014. The results of this research are presented in a new study which demonstrates the value of such ‘syndromic surveillance’ systems for exploring air quality’s effects on human health.



Logo Ademloos - originele afbeelding vervangen

The bride wore a flowing white gown with a beaded bodice, the groom a dapper black suit with a slim tie. So far, so traditional. And then there are the gas masks.

Rather than let the current heavy smog affect their wedding shots, this Beijing couple decided to use their masks to raise awareness of the toxic fog.

The arty pictures were taken around Guomao Bridge in Beijing. Severe pollution has hit much of northern China for the past week, with some readings well over 10 times the internationally accepted safety limit.

Logo Ademloos - originele afbeelding vervangen

Save the date: Tackling Tomorrow’s Air Pollution Today – a solution oriented approach

The University of Leicester organises the midterm conference for Joaquin on the 21st and 22nd of May 2014 in Leicester (UK). This conference will provide you with a unique opportunity to discover and discuss Joaquin's work to date, while also offering the possibility to contribute to the development of the next generation of air quality policies. Please click "read more" for the full conference invitation.

Logo Ademloos - originele afbeelding vervangen

Pregnant women exposed to ‘safe’ levels of air pollution still have an increased risk of giving birth to small babies, researchers have warned.

Nitrogen oxides and fine particles produced by traffic pushed up the risk of low birth weight by almost 20 per cent, a study found.

But the impact also persisted at levels well below those imposed by EU air quality directives.

Logo Ademloos - originele afbeelding vervangen

1. Citizens are entitled to clean air – just like clean water and safe food.

2. Outdoor air pollution is one of the biggest environmental health threats in Europe today leading to significant reductions of life expectancy and productivity.

3. Fine particles and ozone are the most serious pollutants. There is an urgent need to reduce their concentrations significantly.

Logo Ademloos - originele afbeelding vervangen

European policies have eliminated the most visible and harmful effects of air pollution, but current rates of emissions still pose a threat to the environment and to human health. A new study has assessed the policy scope to make further environmental improvements by applying the GAINS (Greenhouse gas-Air pollution Interactions and Synergies) model.