dangers of vocs

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) are made up of elements including Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs). Global was cited by the EPA for releasing twice their permitted VOC’s for at least seven years.  HAPs vary in their disease effects.

They hit the very young the hardest because they are growing rapidly and their resting metabolic rate is higher.  They consume more oxygen per body weight than adults.  This significantly increases their exposure to HAPs.  Their airways are narrower and their mucous glands are larger.  Irritations that might cause only a slight response in an adult could result in dangerous obstruction for a child.  This obstruction can put them at risk for allergies and life threatening asthma. 

For all of us, long term exposures have the potential to harm our organ systems such as:  the heart and circulatory system, the liver - our major organ of detoxification - and most critically our immune system.  The genetics we inherit from our parents and past generations isn’t necessarily what condemns us to the cancers, autoimmune, and other diseases that we struggle with.  It is now understood that our inherited DNA functions as a blueprint.  It is the environmental challenges that potentially change the DNA that pulls the trigger for these diseases.

We know that increasing amounts of these VOCs in the air we breath is a risk factor especially for children, the elderly and pregnant women and those living near the source of these pollutants.  We have heard testimony from people living in the vicinity of the Global tank farm that they have endured frequent severe headaches, and discomfort of breathing in the toxic smells emitted especially in the evenings.

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A special thank you goes out to Dan Woods and Karen Silverman for their photography donations.