Finding of the Day: 8% of L.A. Childhood Asthma Cases Due to Freeway Proximity

Kids who live near busy roads are more likely to develop asthma.

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Bart Everett/Shutterstock

A new study released today confirms what many have always suspected: children who live near busy roads are more likely to develop asthma. The research, conducted by researchers at the University of Southern California and published in Environmental Health Perspectives, attribute eight percent of Los Angeles' 300,000 cases of childhood asthma to proximity to a freeway.

We have known for years that traffic exhaust is responsible for asthma, and a 2008 study made clear that high levels of traffic pollution near homes can increase the likelihood of breathing problems. But this new study is spatially precise. It finds increased asthma levels in children living within 250 feet of a freeway. The consequences of air pollution may affect Los Angeles, but they affect some Los Angelenos more than others.

via Science Blog.

Top image: Bart Everett/Shutterstock.

About the Author

  • Henry Grabar is a freelance writer and a former fellow at CityLab. He lives in New York.