No Health and Safety for Mon Schoolchildren at Major Intersection


From Mon Schools’ green school grant application to the WV School Building Authority (SBA Director Mark Manchin, the appointed cousin of SBA President Joe Manchin):

“COMPLIANCE WITH SBA REQUIREMENTS, PROPOSED NEW PROJECT (GREEN ELEMENTARY): Briefly describe how this project affects the following:”

Mon Schools statement in part:

“If implemented, this project [new green elementary school] will provide students, faculty, and staff with a healthy, safe and pleasant environment in which to work and learn. … Also, in our existing facilities, it is not possible to have a healthy environment because of the lack of new outside air being injected into the facility. This project would allow for ventilation to all areas of the facility…”

In fact, what will be “injected” and “ventilated” throughout the building is the toxic and polluted air from the adjacent high traffic roads and congested intersection. That asthma-inducing brew will be “injected into the facility” and “ventilated to all areas” of it. Furthermore, increased and more severe attacks of asthma may be the least of the side effects.

That’s why California bans schools within 150 meters of high traffic roads. Presumably that’s why WV Department of Education Policy 6200 bans new schools from being sited near “arterial highways, heavily traveled streets, traffic and congestion,” as well as for traffic crash safety risk reasons.

When Mon Schools wrote and sent off the green school grant application that contains the statements above, it knew the two major congested highways were located along two sides of the site of course, very close and flanking (WV 705 & US 119), and that both highways were set to expand – which should have disqualified the school site in the first place. It could be possible that no one knew that the WV Division of Highways was intending to move the expanded intersection of the two expanded highways far closer directly toward the intended school site, to not only border the school grounds but to a point well within 150 meters (let alone 200 meters, which also contain elevated levels of traffic pollution) of the intended school building. However, Mon Schools and the Manchins at the SBA surely should have known about the expanding and encroaching highways and intersection since April 2010 (when the WV DoH public hearing on the highway expansions took place at the Morgantown airport), yet those responsible, that is, irresponsible parties have recklessly continued to pursue this negligent and wrongful site.


Study: Traffic pollution linked to child pneumonia:

But remember, it’s better to be much more concerned with the impact on business. Somehow, that’s the argument that wins the day too often. The Guardian:

Children who live near a main road are in greater danger of catching pneumonia because pollution from passing traffic damages their lungs. A leading expert in childhood breathing difficulties has made the link between exposure to particles from vehicle exhausts and a child’s susceptibility to the chest infection, which can be fatal.

Professor Jonathan Grigg, an honorary consultant at the Royal London Hospital and academic paediatrician at Queen Mary, University of London, made the breakthrough after studying the effect of airborne pollutants on human lung cells. Children whose home is within 100 metres of a main road could be as much as 65% more likely than others to develop pneumonia, he said.


Science Daily: Pollutants from traffic substantially increase asthma-related emergency department visits in children

Overall rates of emergency department visits for pediatric asthma increased by 60 percent in the cold season, probably because of the important role that respiratory infections have in triggering exacerbations.

“In this study we observed evidence that ambient concentrations of ozone and primary pollutants from traffic sources independently contributed to the burden of emergency department visits for pediatric asthma,” wrote Dr. Strickland. “Further, the associations were present at relatively low ambient concentrations, reinforcing the need for continued evaluation of the EPA’s National Ambient Air Quality Standards to ensure that the standards are sufficient to protect susceptible individuals.”



Health Effects of Ozone and Particle Pollution

Ozone and particle pollution are the most widespread air pollutants—and among the most dangerous. Recent research has revealed new insights into how they can harm the body—including taking the lives of infants and altering the lungs of children. All in all, the evidence shows that the risks are greater than we once thought.

Recent findings provide more evidence about the health impacts of these pollutants:

  • Reducing air pollution has extended life expectancy. Thanks to a drop in particle pollution between 1980 and 2000, life expectancy in 51 U.S. cities increased by 5 months on average, according to a recent analysis.1
  • The annual death toll from particle pollution may be even greater than previously understood. The California Air Resources Board recently tripled the estimate of premature deaths in California from particle pollution to 18,000 annually.2
  • Long term exposure to air pollution—especially from highway traffic—harms women, even while in their 50s. Exposure to particle pollution appears to increase women’s risk of lower lung function, developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and dying prematurely.3
  • Busy highways are high risk zones. Pollution from heavy highway traffic contributes to higher risks for heart attack, allergies, premature births and the death of infants around the time they are born.4 New studies looking at the impact of traffic pollution, even in cities with generally “cleaner” air, expanded the concern over the health effects of chronic exposure to exhaust from heavy traffic.
  • Ozone pollution can shorten life, a conclusion confirmed by the latest scientific review by the National Research Council.5 New evidence appeared that some segments of the population may face higher risks from dying prematurely because of ozone pollution, including communities with high unemployment or high public transit use and large Black/African American populations.6
  • Truck drivers, dockworkers and railroad workers may face higher risk of death from lung cancer and COPD from breathing diesel emissions on the job. Studies found that these workers who inhaled diesel exhaust on the job were much more likely to die from lung cancer, COPD and heart disease.7
  • Lower levels of ozone and particle pollution pose bigger threat than previously thought. Lower levels of these all-too-common pollutants triggered asthma attacks and increased the risk of emergency room visits and hospital admissions for asthma in one study.8 Another study found that low levels of these pollutants increased the risk of hospital treatment for pneumonia and (COPD).9

Two types of air pollution dominate the problem in the U.S.: ozone and particle pollution. They aren’t the only serious air pollutants: others include carbon monoxide, lead, nitrogen dioxide, and sulfur dioxide, as well as hundreds of toxic substances. However, ozone and particle pollution represent the most widespread.

What is air pollution?

The health effects of air pollution.

How to protect yourself from air pollution.

FACT: People who work or exercise outside face increased risk from the effects of air pollution.

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