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Air must be regarded as an important and limited natural resource, whose
Scope, philosophy, and objectives.-The Public Health Service air pollution
The basic objectives of the program are threefold: (1) To improve the status of knowledge about the causes and effects of air pollution and about the means of controlling it within acceptable limits; (2) to apply present and future knowledge to the actual control of air pollutants through technical assistance to States, communities, and industry; and (3) to stimulate all levels of government, industry, and the general public to devote increased attention and greater resources to the prevention and control of air pollution.
In carrying out the Public Health Service program, the Division of Air Pollution, in addition to its own resources, accelerates its research by using the resources of many other organizations. These include Federal agencies, universities, and other research facilities. Contracts, grants, and cooperative projects are all employed for such purposes.
Industrial groups also participate directly with the Division of Air Pollution in some of these cooperative undertakings. As examples, & joint project on measurement and evaluation of opacity of plumes from powerplant stacks is underway with the Edison Electric Institute. Another to study emission from the chemical industries has just been started with the Manufacturing Chemists Association. For several years, there has been close liaison with the Automobile Manufacturers Association, including joint support and planning of various research activities on air pollution related to motor vehicles. Out of these coordinated efforts has come the recent action of the industry of incorporating crankcase emission control procedures on all new vehicles this year, and intensified efforts to find effective methods for further reducing vehicular pollution.
State and local agency cooperation is exemplified by their assistance in collecting samples for the National Air Sampling Network of the Division of Air Pollution. This network now numbers 250 stations, including at least one urban and one ponurban sampling point at every station. Fifty of these stations now sample gaseous, as well as particulate, pollutants. In nine cities, more comprehensive automatic sampling and analysis of gaseous contaminants is recorded continuously around the clock. These networks provide continuing information to assist States and communities in evaluating and dealing with their specific problems. Technical assistance (role of the Public Health Service)
In a large majority of the jurisdictions which need control activity, State and local programs are nonexistent at present, or are grossly inadequate. Nationally, technical work in the field directed toward appraisal of problems and development of solutions is at a level far below that required for maintenance of an acceptable level of air quality. Over the next few years, the broad objectives of the technical assistance activity will be to assist States and communities in appraising overall problems and in developing "tailored" control programs, and to provide technical consultation on specialized problems. Cooperative FederalState-local demonstration projects will be used to foster and facilitate program levelopment and to provide
some of the information upon which to base profram design. In general, the Public Health Service activity will be directed oward helping initiate programs and toward providing tools and techniques in a orm useful in attaining this end. The provision of Federal grants to state and peal agencies would furnish the stimulus necessary for the State and local conrol activity and would render the initial support for surveys to determine needs.
In the more distant future, as State and local programs develop, greater em. phasis can be given to assistance in the more technical aspects of air pollution control. Present non-Federal programs
State agencies.-In 1961 there were only 17 States budgeting $5,000 or more for the administration of air pollution control programs. These are listed in table A. Of the $2 million total for these 17 States, 57 percent was spent by California. Most of these States engage in programs of technical assistance and development of local programs. Less than half “enforce” regulations. Six States monitor air quality on a statewide basis, and five review and approve plans for certain new installations which may cause air pollution. New York has recently adopted rules which require that the air pollution control board approve plans, before construction begins, for certain installations; provision is made to delegate such plan approval to qualified local agencies. One State, California, has set up a program for regulation of emissions from motor vehicles. Nine States have adopted laws which authorize cities or counties to operate air pollution control agencies with authority transcending municipal boundaries or otherwise to undertake interlocal cooperation. Two States (Oregon and California) have adopted standards for ambient air quality. Thirteen States have conducted statewide surveys to develop bases for programs, and four others are underway. Other activities of State agencies include training, dissemination of information, nuisance abatement work, provision of laboratory services to local agencies, study of pollutant emissions, and research on effects of pollution on man's health. However, only a few States engage in more than a few of these activities.
Local agencies.--Data obtained from local agencies indicated the existence of 85 local air pollution control programs with annual budgets in 1961 of at least $5,000. From table B it will be seen that 34 of these bad budgets of at least $25,000. The median per capita annual expenditure of these was 14.1 cents while the median for the other 51 was 7.8 cents. The median staff for all local programs was 1.3 per 100,000 population. Total expenditures for local programs was slightly over $8 million.
TABLE A.-State air pollution programs, 1961 (those spending $5,000 per year
i Comprehensive includes regulation (control) technical assistance, studies, etc.
TABLE B.—Local air pollution control agencies in the United States (with annual
budget of $5,000 or more, February 1961) 1
Agencies with budgets of $25,000 or more
1. San Francisco Bay area, California..
Summary for group Agencies with budgets of less than $25,000 per year:
1. Birmingham, Ala... 2, Denver, Colo... 3. Dade County, Fla. 4. Atlanta, Ga. 5. Cicero, nl. 6. Peoria, ni.. 7. East Chicago, Ind. 8. Evansville, Ind.. 9. Des Moines, Iowa 10. McCracken County (Paducah) Ky. 11, Dearborn, Mich. 12. Grand Rapids, Mich. 13. Monroe, Mich.. 14. Wayne County, Mich. 15. Minneapolis, Minn.. 16. Omaha, Nebr. 17. Camden, NJ 18. Hillside Township, N.J. 19. Perth Amboy, N.J. 20. Trenton, NJ.. 21. Illion, N.Y. 22. Rochester, N.Y.. 23. Tonawanda, N.Y. 24. Watertown, N.Y. 25. Asheville, N.C. 26. Charlotte, N.C. 27. Winston-Salem, N.C. 28. Akron, Ohio... 29. East Cleveland, Ohio. 30. Sandusky, Ohio.. 31. Toledo, Ohio... 32. Youngstown, Ohio. 33. Zanesville, Ohio. 34. Eugene, Oreg..
***** 35, Portland, Oreg.
.. 36. Erie, Pa.. 37. Lehigh Valley, Pa. (area). 38. East Providence, R.I..... See footnotes at end of table.
TABLE B.--Local air pollution control agencies in the United States (with annual
budget of $5,000 or more, February 1961) —Continued
I Table prepared largely from data collected in early 1961.
Not including clerical personnel. 31900 fiscal year. • Estimated.
Part time. • Stuff believed to spend considerable time on work other than air pollution. Pajerated by the State in which located. . Total Median.
The Public Health Service estimates that significant air pollution problems exist in urban areas encompassing 73 million people, with an additional 34 million living in places having minor air pollution problems. At least 60 percent of the total population are thus exposed to undesirable levels of pollution.
Many of the local air pollution control programs are very limited, and inade quate to cope with the problems facing them. Few have sufficient information concerning pollution sources, or contaminant levels in the air, and in the fem instances where plans for new installations are reviewed, these are usually limited to combustion equipment. Areas needing further research
Identification and measurement of pollutants. Although some progress has been made in identifying and measuring general classes of pollutants, there is a need for more intensive research in this field of endeavor. There is also a real need for intensive research into methods for identifying and measuring the individual substances that make up these classes. Simpler and less expensive procedures are needed for this purpose. Our knowledge is far from complete regarding air pollutants: Their identify and quantity, the specific sources from which they derive, factors governing their dispersion and chemical and physical changes in the atmosphere, and their effects, singly and in combination.
Continuing source appraisals.-We are concerned with pollution arising from domestic, municipal, and industrial sources. These pollutants in general are the end products of combustion, the products of incomplete combustion, and the emissions from various types of process industries. Technological development alters and will continue to alter the types of emissions from chemical processing and from manufacturing and other industrial sources, thus emphasizing the need for continuing source appraisals.
The role of motor vehicles.-One ubiquitous source of air pollution is the motor vehicle. In all urban areas, motor-vehicle emissions are already a significant source of pollution. Current trends in their use suggest that motor vehicles may become an even more significant source. The interrelationship between hydro carbons and oxides of nitrogen, when photochemical air pollution (smog) is produced in the presence of sunlight, needs further elucidation. The role of par ticulates in the formation of smog, and the mechanism by which smog irritates the eyes and causes damage to vegetation, will require further research. The potentials for reducing motor-vehicle emissions through modifications of engines, as well as other approaches, need active and intensive study.
ORGANIZATION OF PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE
Photochemical smog.-The formation of ozone and other oxidants characteristic of photochemical smog is known to result from reactions among gases at concentrations of a very low order, at which they originally may be relatively innocuous. Identification and determination of the relative importance of each participating primary pollutant in the photochemical processes is necessary. Changing technology necessitates fundamental studies in photochemistry. Identification of primary reactants associated with secondary toxicants will facilitate the development of more effective and less costly controls. Knowledge of the intermediate and secondary products must also be acquired to determine biologic effects.
Meteorology.-A fundamental scientific problem is that of establishing siutable relationships between meteorological parameters and dispersive capacities. These relationships are necessary to predict the three-dimensional distribution of airborne material, under a wide variety of weather conditions, emitted from sources of known characteristics. Objective determination of reasonable emission rates, and the degree of control required for single sources in a given community, are dependent to a considerable extent on this research.
Economic losses.--Estimates of losses due to air pollution to date have been largely guesses. Studies are required that will provide a sound basis for future estimates of national losses from (1) damage to crops and livestock, horticultural products, and other types of vegetation; (2) corrosion of materials and soiling of surfaces; and (3) interference with ground and air transportation. Economic losses due to the expense of illness and diminished productivity resulting from air pollution are completly unknown, as are the effects of pollution upon the general well-being of healthy individuals.
Studies are also required to identify specific causative agents of economic damage, their mechanisms and rates of action, their effective concentrations, and the costs of control, as a further basis for development of adequate control measures and acceptable levels of pollutants in community air.
Control procedures.—There are control methods available for many of the known sources of pollution. In many cases, however, effective control methods are not yet feasible, either by process design and modification or through the installation of specific equipment. Considerable expansion of research is needed on the fundamental aspects of control, including such concepts as the development of mass transit facilities and regulation of land use, as well as on the development of applicable devices, so that the use of control methods will be more widespread and more acceptable from an economic viewpoint.
Sulfur oxides.-A major class of pollutants requiring further research in all aspects outlined above are the oxides of sulfur. As a common constituent of liquid and solid fossil fuels, as well as of many commercially important ores, sulfur is oxidized and discharged from many combustion sources and numerous industrial processes. Identification of sulfur compounds in the air, their roles in atmospheric reactions, the limitations of the atmosphere to disperse them satisfactorily, and methods for preventing their large-scale discharge as pollutants are subjects urgently in need of intensified investigation. The control of air pollution
The consensus arising from the 1962 National Conference on Air Pollution was the need, nationally, for a more effective control of air pollution. There was no agreement as to the timing and method for accomplishing such control, Some favored a continuation, on an accelerated basis, of the present approach in which all control authority rests in State and local agencies. Others felt that this should be supplemented by providing for Federal action in instances where unsatisfactory situations persist. There was general agreement on the gross inadequacy of most State and local programs and of the importance of providing them with greater support. The urgent need for more rained personnel was likewise recognized.
ARCTIC HEALTH RESEARCH CENTER In 1948-following reports of two American Medical Association teams which visited Alaska in 1946 and 1947, and hearings conducted by the House Appropriations Committee in 1948-an appropriation was made for fiscal year 1949 for technical assistance to Alaska and for health investigations. To conduct the latter, a laboratory was established in Anchorage in July of 1948, under the authority of the Public Health Service Act, as amended. On May 24, 1950, this laboratory was designated the Arctic Health Research Center.