UCLA’s Suzanne Paulson explains why we have poor air quality in the winter

January 30, 2019

Suzanne Paulson, UCLA professor of atmospheric sciences and director of the Center for Clean Air at UCLA, was quoted in a Los Angeles Magazine article explaining why air pollution is still a “thing” in the winter. According to Paulson, “When the ground surface is cold, it cools the air right above it, so then you have a situation where there’s cold air under warm air, and the two don’t naturally mix.” In summer, the air pollution is able to be diluted. The warm air near the ground takes the pollution with it and it isn’t trapped.

The negative impacts of pollution vary by season. Summertime ozone pollution exacerbates asthma and other lung conditions, whereas wintertime particulate pollution is more likely to be a contributing factor in heart attacks and strokes.

Read the full article at Los Angeles Magazine.