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Eruption and concern for air quality and health

Posted by Anja A on Thursday, 31 May 2018, at 10:14 a.m.
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People are wanting to know what it is like downwind of Hawaii's active volcano and the present eruption's increased emissions and how it affects health and lifestyle. A recent meeting was held with a community living downwind of the eruption in Ka'u. Residents met with the respective government, environmental officials and health experts about the air quality pertaining to the eruption. The emphasis was not only on Ka'u District but Kona District as well and island wide. This meeting stayed on point by both the residents and the experts there and provided good participation from both sides and good information, in my view.

I think, anyone living on this island and anyone planning a move or a visit to this island should take the time to really listen to the questions of concern from the residents who have been living daily, at least since the year 2008 with vog, to the present under these extraordinary eruption conditions with ash particulates. The discussion goes for about 48 minutes and it is worth listening to the end. Useful information and facts were given and were unbiased. This discussion explains, from a medical and health perspective, the affects of the different types of emissions that everyone living and visiting this island experiences including what to do, when, how including why types of tools and aids are effective and what to avoid and what the weather's role in concentrations of SO2 and other particulates around the island. The results of an island-wide school children study were talked about by a doctor present and it was revealing.

The attending Ka'u residents expressed the very concerns of this Konaweb thread. Please take the time to listen to their entire discussion.

In the years that I have lived here, I found that there has been much misinformation and a lot of misunderstanding regarding air quality on this island, in general, and involving the legitimate concerns and health effects for asthma and other health issues.

I think that the county and medical professionals now, more than ever, really need to communicate better and more accurate information (facts) about the reality of living on an active volcano (many others around the world have lived with eruptions) and to do a better job of making this information widespread for residents.

If you want particular information on air quality and health effects especially with respect to asthma and other respiratory conditions, please listen to this entire recorded meeting. You will also hear what measures are being taken to expand air quality control for residents, island wide.

I also will say how important it is for everyone living here and visiting here to seek balance when making assumptions, hearing, reading, reacting to statements from social media.

Here is the link to the meeting held with Ka'u residents.

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