Canberra, Jul 31, 2023, IANS
Canberra, July 31 (IANS) Portable air purifiers could protect millions of Australians from smoke inhalation during major bushfire events, according to a new study published on Monday.
In the stud, a team from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) found that purifiers fitted with high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters can improve indoor air quality by up to 74 per cent during bushfire events, reports Xinhua news agency.
Much of Australia was blanketed by smoke during the devastating 2019-20 Black Summer bushfires, causing a 44 per cent increase in the number of people reporting asthma symptoms and presenting to emergency departments.
A landmark inquiry into the fires later heard evidence that the smoke was linked to an estimated 445 deaths.
The new study estimates that its findings could protect 2.7 million Australians with asthma and an additional 7 million at elevated risk of health problems during extreme smoke events.
"Staying inside and closing windows and doors during extreme smoke events is important, but ultimately what provides protection against smoke pollution indoors are air purifiers fitted with HEPA filters," Amanda Wheeler, lead author of the study from the CSIRO, said in a media release.
"Using more than one, if possible, inside houses is likely to lead to improved health outcomes.
To draw their findings, researchers monitored indoor and outdoor concentrations of PM2.5, high levels of which can cause significant health levels when breathed in.
They found that nine homes operating a HEPA filter during prescribed burning periods had PM2.5 levels at least 30 per cent lower, with construction code compliance also a significant factor.
Wheeler said it was critical to find ways to protect the population from the serious health impacts of bushfires as climate change continues to extend the length of the threat season, potentially prolonging smoke exposure and associated adverse health effects.
40, Akhaura Road, Agartala 799 001, Tripura, INDIA.
Administrative Section: 0381-2315907
News Section: 0381-2329560
© Tripuratimes.com. All Rights Reserved.