Less driving equals cleaner air. Walk Score recently rated Nashville as a 26.5. For comparison, NYC is 88. The average city reviewed was a 47. Importantly, we had no metric for public transportation. Nashville, we have a lot of work to do!
At that this time, most neighborhoods in Nashville are car dependent. It is neither safe nor convenient to walk.
Recently, in the NY Times, it was reported that 'For the first time, researchers have shown that reducing air pollution leads to improved respiratory function in children ages 11 to 15, a critical period of lung development'. This age represents the final termination of lung growth.
The importance of this statement lies in the age. Prior, we had know that smaller children's aiways were affected by air pollution but it wasn't clear what was happening with older lungs finishing their growth.
'Environmentalists have maintained that federal emission standards are not stringent enough to safeguard health, while some conservatives criticize the regulations as overly restrictive and expensive. The new study, conducted in Southern California and published on Wednesday in The New England Journal of Medicine, provides evidence that better air quality, a result of stricter regulation, improved health among children, experts said.
Morton Lippmann, a professor of environmental medicine at New York University School of Medicine, said the research would be influential and predicted that within the next few years, when federal emission standards are due for review, “this kind of information will play a major role.”
“It provides confirmation that the work we’ve done to improve air pollution has made a difference in kids’ health,” said Dr. Joel Kaufman, a physician and epidemiologist at the University of Washington, who was not involved in the research. “There are more kids comfortable running around.”'
Air pollution is not healthy. Please consider walking to your destination if possible. If not, I want to take one moment to remind you to turn off your vehicle. Don't idle.
Walking is a wonderful alternative if it can be done safely and in comfort.