Asthma – Its Health Effects

Ever wondered how natural gases are produced from the earth and what the effects are on the health of the population? Fracking is a technique used to force gases and oil from shale rock.  Frackers drill down into the earth and force a high pressure water mixture into the rock to recover these natural resources.
It was shown that people living near natural gas developments are up to 4x more likely to have an asthma attack or asthma related episode. Recently a study released in JAMA Internal Medicine classified asthma into 3 categories; mild, moderate, and severe. These 3 levels of severity are all affected by fracking in 3 different ways. the first is that it releases ozone, a powerful irritant, to the atmosphere at ground level.asthma

This can increase temperatures and speed up climate change in the area causing exacerbation of asthma sufferers symptoms. Near these fracking sites there is increased industrial activities that can potential asthma and is compared to constantly breathing in industrial pollutants.  A scary thought is that the nearby environment is not the only area affected by these activities as these gases and oils must be transported through pipelines to other facilities and its no secret that pipelines leak and can contaminate local water supplies. This creates the possible reach of some of these risks to be a much wider radius than even this study investigated.

Sources Cited:
Miller, Ryan W. “Study: Asthma Attacks Linked to Fracking in Pa.” USA Today. Gannett, 18 July 2016. Web. 21 July 2016.
“What Is Fracking and Why Is It Controversial?” BBC News. BBC, 16 Dec. 2015. Web. 21 July 2016.