Tuesday, October 9, 2012
We're breathing this stuff in
From the Daily News:
Big Apple air is a bizarre brew of bacteria, pollen, clothing fiber, fungus, tire rubber, dead skin cells, cooking fat and carbon emissions.
The truth of exactly what New Yorkers breathe comes courtesy of air expert Bill Logan, who grabbed a “spore sucker” of his own design and joined the Daily News for a tour of the city.
The results might surprise you.
Yes, there’s the expected pollution in midtown and the South Bronx, and neighborhoods with lots of trees tend to have pollen and fungus in the air. But each breath you take — about 33,000 a day — also might include spores, bacteria, pollens, tiny bits of glass, starch and fat.
Queens’ famous diversity is mirrored by its air: Samples taked at 94th St. near 23d Ave. in East Elmhurst turned up a huge array of rust spores, a fungus. They could have come from grass, a nearby pine tree, or “something succulent and living,” Logan said.
Tiny bits of colorful glass, maybe from airplanes taking off or landing at nearby LaGuardia Airport, also appeared on Logan’s slides — and Elmhurst had its fair amount of carbon, tire rubber, starch and even teeny bits of insect exoskeleton.