STUDY GUIDE FOR AIR QUALITY ISSUES

OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY – BI301 – HUMAN IMPACTS ON ECOSYSTEMS -- 2014

Copyright 1998, Patricia S. Muir

To review lecture notes on this subject, focusing on general considerations about air pollutants or on tropospheric ozone pollution, click on air quality or on ozone. Highlighted or underlined words and phrases in the Unit Goals and Questions, below, provide jumps to the portion of the lecture notes that first introduces, or explains in most detail, the relevant information. However, many of the issues addressed below are covered places in the lecture notes; a review of the notes in entirety is suggested.

UNIT GOALS AND QUESTIONS

1. What are some kinds of evidence that can be used to establish that a pollutant is at least partially responsible for an adverse effect on an ecosystem?

2. Compare and contrast observational versus experimental approaches to investigating effects of a pollutant (or pollutants) on ecosystems, considering examples of each, and their strengths and weaknesses.

3. What are "criteria pollutants" as defined under the Clean Air Act?

4. You should understand what tropospheric ozone is and where it comes from. What are the chemical precursors to ozone and what are their sources? What steps can be taken to decrease emissions of these precursors?

5. Is elevated tropospheric ozone primarily an urban problem? Why or why not?

6. What do we know about ozone and crops? What do we know about ozone and forest ecosystems?

ADDITIONAL READINGS (OPTIONAL!)

Burns, L.D. (et al.) 2002. Vehicle of change. Scientific American Oct. 2002: 64 - 73. (A discussion of the prospects for hydrogen fuel-cell cars and a hydrogen fuel-cell-based energy system overall -- very exciting!)

Chameides, W.L., R.D. Saylor, and E.B. Cowling. 1997. Ozone pollution in the rural United States and the new NAAQS. Science 276: 916. (Describes the basis for the revised ozone standard and points out that it will result in more rural areas being nonattainment than did the previous standard, which will require a more regional approach to ozone control strategies.)

Chang, T. Y., R. H. Hammerle, S. M. Japar, and I. T. Salmeen. 1991. Alternative transportation fuels and air quality. Environmental Science and Technology 25(7):1190-1197. (Reviews 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments re. alternative fuel requirements and their likely impacts on tropospheric ozone, CO, and global climate change.)

Heck, W. W. et al. 1984. Assessing impacts of ozone on agricultural crops: I. Overview. Journal of the Air Pollution Control Association 34:729-735 [Describes the National Crop Loss Assessment Program (NCLAN)--a coordinated effort designed to address systematically the effects of ozone on major crops in the U.S.]

Hileman, B. 1982. Crop losses from air pollutants. Environmental Science and Technology 16: 495A - 499A. (Another good description of NCLAN [see above] -- its goals, methods, and findings.)

Jacobson, M.Z., W.G. Colella and D.M. Golden. 2005. Cleaning the air and improving health with hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles. Science 308: 1901 - 1905. (Discusses potential environmental savings associated with hydrogen fuel-cells and the tradeoffs associated with the technology/energy source used to generate the hydrogen - wind, coal, etc.)

Laurence, J.A. and C.P. Anderson. 2003. Ozone and natural systems: understanding exposure, response and risk. Environment International 29: 155 - 160. (Points out that, while we know a good deal about how ozone affects crops and individual forest species, we are far from understanding impacts on natural ecosystems or how ozone stress is likely to interact with other stressors, such as global climate change, in influencing such ecosystems.)

MacKenzie, J. J. and M. T. El-Ashry. (eds). 1993. Air Pollution's toll on forests and crops. Yale University Press. (A compendium of review papers by leading researchers in the fields implied by the title. Each article lists numerous references.)

Schulze, R.H. 1993. The 20-year history of the evolution of air pollution control legislation in the U.S.A. Atmospheric Environment 27B:15-21. (Does a nice job of summarizing this history and analyzing strengths and weaknesses of control attempts. Makes recommendations for the future, based on lessons from the past.)

Stone, R. and P. Szuromi. (eds) 1999. Powering the next century. Science 285: 677-710. (A series of articles on prospects for renewable energy, "supercars," fuel cells and photovoltaics, etc. Basically a summary of where we are now and may be going re energy sources, with discussions of pros and cons associated with various technologies.)

To return to the master directory for the BI301 home page, click the "CONTENTS" box at the bottom of the page. For general reminders on how to move within and among these pages, click "Navigate."

This page is maintained by Patricia Muir at Oregon State University. Address questions or comments to me here: (muirp@bcc.orst.edu) . Page last updated Oct. 18, 2013.

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