Asthma Survey

South Philadelphia Asthma SurveyIn 2010, The Council worked Drexel School of Public Health masters students to gather asthma data in a community close to major sources of pollution, such as the interstate system and shipping ports along the Delaware River. Throughout the 19148 zip code in South Philadelphia the Council conducted an anonymous door-to-door survey of breathing difficulties, asthma diagnosis, asthma medication usage, and smoking history.

In 2011, the project will expand into a comparison study of air pollution and asthma rates across Pennsylvania, PA counties, and zip codes around Southeast Philadelphia.  This information will help guide public health and Clean Air Council decisions about where to focus programmatic efforts.

Read the 2010 Final Report.

Preview the first year Research Poster.

CAC_Asthma Surveillance Report.doc309 KB
CAC_Athma Surveillance Practicum Posterold.ppt1.61 MB
Currently, natural gas is paving the way as an alternative source of cheap energy over coal in the United States. This is especially true in Pennsylvania, where the Marcellus Shale is estimated to contain trillions of cubic feet of natural gas reserves that have yet to be tapped. Due to this abundance, Pennsylvania leadership has invited extractive industries to build gas infrastructure that they hope will grow Pennsylvania’s economy. A majority of natural gas is methane. However, a portion of the natural gas in southwestern Pennsylvania contains ethane and other hydrocarbons. This ethane-rich gas is called “wet gas.” This wet gas is preferable to dry gas (gas without ethane and other non-methane hydrocarbons), because ethane can be used to produce plastic products.
In June 2011, Shell Chemical Appalachia LLC (Shell) announced plans to assess the building of a world-scale petrochemical complex, or ethane cracker, in Monaca, PA, within Potter and Center townships located in southwestern Pennsylvania. This facility would take locally-produced ethane from shale gas production and use it as a feedstock to produce polyethylene (plastic) pellets. These pellets would be later processed to manufacture plastic bags, automotive components, and other polyethylene-based products. The proposed facility would produce an average of one and a half million metric tons of ethylene per year. 
Clean Air Council’s 2013-2014 Health Impact Assessment (HIA) serves as a public, written documentation of the process, partners, measures, and outcomes of Shell’s proposal to build a large-scale petrochemical plant in Monaca, Beaver County, Pennsylvania . Shell’s Air Quality Plan Approval Application is subject to change and revision over time. Due to this, the Council could not account for on-going and future revisions in the HIA. The Council referred to Shell’s Air Quality Plan Approval Application from May 2014 to compose the HIA.