Why We Test
Air pollution is a serious public health and environmental issue in
metro Atlanta. Stationary sources of pollution from industry and
commercial operations continue to face more stringent regulations.
However, a significant amount of pollution is produced from mobile
sources including gasoline-powered cars and light-duty trucks.
On average, each of us breathes over 3,000 gallons of air each
day. Breathing polluted air can burn your eyes and nose, irritate your
throat, therefore make breathing difficult. In fact, pollutants like
tiny airborne particles and ground level ozone can trigger respiratory
problems, especially for people with asthma. Today, nearly 30 million
adults and children in the U.S. have been diagnosed with asthma. Asthma
sufferers can be severely affected by air pollution. Air pollution can
also aggravate health problems for the elderly and others with heart or
Some toxic chemicals released in the air such as benzene or vinyl
chloride are highly toxic and can cause cancer, birth defects, long term
injury to the lungs, as well as brain and nerve damage. In some cases,
breathing these chemicals can even cause death. More details on pollution and your health.
Other pollutants make their way up into the upper atmosphere, causing a
thinning of the protective ozone layer. This has led to changes in the
environment and dramatic increases in skin cancers and cataracts (eye
Air pollution is not just a threat to our health, it also damages our
environment. Toxic air pollutants and the chemicals that form acid rain
and ground-level ozone can damage trees, crops, wildlife, lakes and
other bodies of water. Those pollutants can also harm fish and other
Each day, air pollution causes thousands of illnesses leading to lost
days at work and school. Air pollution also reduces agricultural crop
and commercial forest yields by billions of dollars each year (Source: www.epa.gov).
Thanks in part to vehicle emission testing, the region is experiencing
measurable air quality benefits. There have been fewer unhealthy air
To find out more about the current air quality levels in the state of Georgia, click here.