Oxidant - History of Ozone Ambient Air Quality Standards

This page last reviewed March 8, 2005

"Oxidant" refers to a group of chemicals that result from chemical reactions occurring in the presence of ultraviolet light. For the purpose of setting air quality standards in California, "oxidant" was defined as an oxidizing chemical that reacts with a reagent that cannot be oxidized by the oxygen (O2) molecule contained in air.
In the early days of measuring pollutants in air, scientists were uncertain about which of the photochemical oxidants, such as ozone or nitrogen dioxide, were associated with certain health effects. Scientists found that health effects such as eye irritation, visibility effects and crop damage correlated well with photochemical oxidants measured as a group by ARB's Potassium Iodide Method.

For more information, please contact Dr. Linda Smith at (916) 327-8225.

Ozone History