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Trump case expected to head to the jury today; IN food banks concerned about draft Farm Bill; NH parents, educators urge veto of anti-LGBTQ+ bills; Study shows a precipitous drop in migratory fish populations, in US and worldwide.

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Actor Robert DeNiro joins Capitol Police officers to protest against Donald Trump at his New York hush money trial as both sides make closing arguments. And the Democratic Party moves to make sure President Biden will be on the ballot in Ohio.

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Smokey Bear thought only "you" could prevent forest fires, but decomposing mushrooms may also help, a Native American community in Oregon is achieving healthcare sovereignty, and Colorado farmers hope fast-maturing, drought-tolerant seeds will better handle climate change.

Report: Building emissions contribute to dangerous outdoor air pollution

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Thursday, October 5, 2023   

Emissions from buildings are a dangerous source of air pollution across the nation, according to a new report.

The analysis showed the burning of fossil fuels from building and home appliances contributes harmful particles into the air.

Dylan Plummer, Northwest senior field organizer for the Sierra Club, said outdoor air effects from fossil fuel use in the region are not just a threat inside buildings.

"As that gas is being vented outside, it's putting dangerous levels of nitrous oxide into the air that are in turn having really dramatic health impacts on these communities," Plummer explained.

Plummer pointed out taken together, homes in Washington state emit about five times as much nitrogen oxide as gas-fired power plants. Nitrogen oxides contribute to climate change and are linked to harmful health effects. The report was released by Sierra Club, Physicians for Social Responsibility and WE ACT for Environmental Justice.

Plummer noted people of color are disproportionately affected by poor outdoor air pollution from buildings.

"These communities that are historically marginalized are often times living in areas with higher density of gas use or other pollutants that further exacerbate the nitrous oxide pollution associated with buildings," Plummer emphasized.

Plummer acknowledged Washington state is taking steps to clean up pollution in this sector, especially in new buildings. On a federal level, the Sierra Club and 25 other organizations urged the Environmental Protection Agency last year to regulate building emissions.

He stressed all-electric appliances are a viable alternative to the harmful status quo.

"Just like we don't build cars without seat belts anymore, we shouldn't be building appliances that are putting out deadly pollutants," Plummer contended. "Especially not ones that are being used in homes with children and elderly and other vulnerable populations."

Disclosure: The Sierra Club contributes to our fund for reporting on Climate Change/Air Quality, Energy Policy, Environment, and Environmental Justice. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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