Air pollution an issue in YSW.

Megan Delaire has written an article about traffic related air pollution (TRAP) in today and the accompanying gif is a telling reminder of why the shift to electric vehicles cannot come soon enough for the health of people living in Toronto near major highways and downtown.

The article uses a gif that rotates a series of four images showing the levels of four pollutants measured and published in 2017.

The gif showing the four maps.

Here are the four individual maps in a static format so they can be viewed more easily. York South-Weston is outlined in red. It’s clear that the greater volumes of traffic on the 401 and downtown create more TRAP. The first two maps show particulate matter in two sizes. Small particles are insidious because they can irritate the lungs. The smaller the particles, the bigger the risk to health.

Read more on particulate matter here and here


Nitrogen Dioxide is a pollutant that irritates the respiratory system and can trigger asthma.

More on Nitrogen Dioxide here.


Benzene is a particularly nasty chemical associated with gasoline. More on benzene here.

It’s clear from the maps that living near major highways provides a greater exposure to contaminants. Noise is just one of the toxic by-products of major highways. The faster we can move to electric vehicles, the better for our health. More on TRAP from the University of Toronto here.

Megan promises a follow-up article describing what can be done to reduce TRAP levels. Read the article here.


One thought on “Air pollution an issue in YSW.”

  1. Sadly, this isn’t a surprise – no matter how much more efficient contemporary engines perform these days, relative to the leaded fuel cars of days gone by.

    And, the amount of pollutant spewed due to the sheer volume of highway traffic just a couple of kilometres north of town centre has always been problematic & evident.

    All of which makes me wonder if that annoying, but relatively inexpensive and yet cancelled, bi-annual “Ontario Drive Clean Emissions testing program” has contributed to more of this foul air in our midst?

    Frankly, there have been so many times where I can’t help but wonder how some shite boxes are still allowed to share our roadways – in addition to those dubiously wonderful, fuel saving Diesel engined cars (like VW). Super stinky & annoyingly dirty!

    (And yeah, also look forward to the day when long distance e-Vehicles are the norm and not just the expensive, quirky exception.)

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