As the summer wears on, the poor air quality days are beginning to happen, and in succession. We’re currently in a long stretch of code orange smog alert days, which are forecasts of the air quality and do not actually represent an ‘exceedance’ under the Nation Ambient Air Quality Standards. With a baby on the way I am interested in how seasonal air quality affects development. I have superimposed our own pregnancy calendar and regional air quality onto the fetal development and air quality interaction chart from UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability. I think that the chart may be more applicable to serious air quality concerns such as indoor smoke, but the exercise may still be interesting.
Perhaps I started this a bit early, with more bad air quality days on the way before the birth, but I will continue to keep it updated – including development outside the womb. For the results so far, it looks like we’ve avoided some of the more serious fetal development effects and now could run into some delayed weight gain. Looking ahead for the summer we’ll likely see more ozone days in the first few months of this little guy’s existence.