Release 01-07
March 8, 2001 
CONTACT: Jerry Martin
Gennet Osborn
(916) 322-2990

Air Resources Board Begins Implementing Children's Health Study in Oakland

    OAKLAND-- The California Environmental Protection Agency’s Air Resources Board (ARB) has begun monitoring air quality in Oakland as part of the Children's Health Initiative.  Oakland is one of six California sites selected by the ARB as part of an effort to identify and address the harmful health impacts poor air quality has on children’s health.

    ARB staff will hold a community meeting Saturday, March 10, at 10:00 a.m. to discuss the special air monitoring equipment to be installed at Lockwood Elementary School in the Oakland community of Fruitvale.  Lockwood Elementary will be the primary air monitoring site for the Fruitvale community.

    "Children are more susceptible to poor air quality than adults," said ARB Executive Officer Michael P. Kenny.  "It is vital to study children's health in order to protect them from the potentially harmful effects of air pollution."

    Children can sometimes be more at risk from air pollutants’ harmful health effects than adults.  The ARB has made a firm commitment to study the impacts of air pollution on children's health, including studies on air quality and childhood diseases such as asthma. The special studies include an evaluation of current monitoring procedures and will include a review of ambient air quality standards, additional air monitoring, and the identification and control of air toxics.

    Six communities throughout the state have been chosen as sites for special, year-long air monitoring studies that focus on children.  The six sites were chosen based on community interest and regional estimates of air pollution, geographical diversity, the proximity of schools to major freeways and major industrial sources, which can affect the air quality in individual communities.

    Community meetings have already taken place at some sites, and meetings are scheduled for the remaining locations.  Community members are encouraged to attend these informational meetings to learn more about children's environmental health protection, provide suggestions, and ask questions of the ARB staff. For more information, click here.

    The six locations are: Barrio Logan in San Diego, Boyle Heights and Wilmington in Los Angeles, Crockett in Contra Costa county, Fruitvale in Oakland, and Fresno.

    The Air Resources Board is a department of the California Environmental Protection Agency.  ARB's mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy.  The ARB oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health based air quality standards.

    The energy crisis facing California is real.  Every Californian needs to take immediate action to reduce energy consumption.  For a list of sample ways you can reduce demand and cut your energy costs, see our Web-site.

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