Author: Amber Huntzinger, Laura Coughlin
Date: March 1, 2005

* There's something in the air, and it's affecting death rates in urban communities. A study published in JAMA found that short-term exposure to ozone pollution, caused by cars, power plants, and industry, was associated with higher death rates in 95 urban communities over a 14-year period. Short-term ozone exposure already has been linked to health problems and increased hospital visits, but the findings of previous studies linking ozone levels to mortality rates were inconsistent. Researchers from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies found that a 10-parts-per-billion increase in ozone levels within the previous week was associated with a 0.52 percent daily death rate hike and a 0.64 percent increase in cardiovascular- and respiratory-related deaths.

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