Father’s Day: 5 Ways Dads Can Fight For Clean Air

BY ON June 11, 2012

Dad's hand holding baby's hand

We are Moms Clean Air Force. We are coalition of Moms and Dads filled with passion and dedication in the fight for cleaner air. We have an innate drive to do everything within our power to protect our children. Everyone has the right to clean air.

I’m a mom of three young boys and I’m concerned about their ability to breathe clean air over their lifetime. In addition to the many moms and women who fight hard for non-toxic environments, I feel fortunate to be surrounded by dads and men who play an equally important role in creating healthy environments without harmful chemicals for our children. My husband, father, friends and neighbors all have a vested interest in the health of our children and all children.

Dads have the right to go to bat for clean air.

Dads have reason to be concerned about the air they are breathing. Air pollution can lead to a wide array of health issues including decreasing the quality and quantity of sperm.

Their children are also affected by air pollutants. Boys tend to suffer more than girls from many children’s health issues brought on by air pollution including some childhood cancers, asthma, learning and behavioral disorders, and some types of birth defects.

Father’s Day is an opportunity to make a difference.

This Father’s Day is a great time for fathers and father-to-be to remember the important role they can play in the fight for clean air.

5 Ways Dads Can Fight For Clean Air

1. No idling.

Vehicle exhaust contains air toxins and fine particles, among other pollutants. The pollution from a running engine impacts all of our health, but particularly our children and those with asthma suffer. The toxins produced are associated with increased incidence of respiratory ailments and heart disease, as well as greater cancer risk. Idling produces more emissions per minute than driving.

2. Get some fresh air.

Generally speaking, outdoor air quality is much better than indoor air quality. Take the time to open the windows when the weather warms up or take a walk outside.

3. Invest in a few indoor houseplants.

Many common houseplants act as an air filter, removing toxins from the air we breathe. They are known to produce oxygen from CO2 and they absorb toxins including benzene (gasoline, inks, oils, paints, plastics, and rubber), formaldehyde and/or trichloroethylene (printing inks, paints, lacquers, varnishes, and adhesives).

4. Test your home for radon.

Radon is a colorless, tasteless and odorless gas that causes lung cancer. Radon can build up to dangerous levels inside homes, schools and other buildings. Exposure to radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States, after smoking. If the test shows elevated levels of radon, the problem can be fixed cost effectively. Long-term exposure to radon can lead to lung cancer.

5. Choose not to smoke.

Every year in the U.S. over 392,000 people die from tobacco-caused disease, making it the leading cause of preventable death. Another 50,000 people die from exposure to secondhand smoke. If you’re going to smoke take it outside the home and don’t do it in the presence of children.

Millions of Americans continue to breathe unhealthy air.


 Photo: © Michael Smith

TOPICS: Asthma, Dads, Pollution