WHAT ARE THE 1990 CEP ESTIMATES OF AIR TOXICS LEVELS
IN NEW JERSEY?
In their CEP study for 1990, USEPA identified 39 critical
pollutants out of the 148 HAPs included in the study which
are important nationwide. The CEP study estimated that
25 of these pollutants exceed the health benchmarks in
The map below shows how the estimated levels of benzene,
one of the 25 pollutants, varied across the state for
Maps of the 1990 CEP estimates for other pollutants are
The table below shows the average statewide estimated
risk from concentrations of 39 nationally important air
toxics, as predicted by the CEP for 1990. County-level
estimates are also available.
Health effects caused by air toxics can be broadly grouped
into either cancer or noncancer effects. U.S. EPA and
NJDEP use cancer and noncancer health benchmarks to evaluate
risks from pollutants that people are exposed to in the
environment. These benchmarks are based on studies that
show just how toxic a specific chemical is, by estimating
how much of a dose it takes to either cause cancer over
a lifetime or to cause some other noncancerous effect
(for example, on a particular organ). The benchmarks can
be compared to the air concentrations predicted in the
CEP. This comparison of the air concentration to the benchmark
concentration gives us a number we call the "risk
ratio." If the risk ratio for a specific chemical
is less than one, the air concentration does not pose
a health risk. If it is greater than one, it may be of
concern. The risk ratio shows just how much higher the
air concentration is than the health benchmark.
1990 COUNTY-LEVEL ESTIMATES
Asterisks indicate that the health benchmark and risk
ratio for the pollutant are based on non-cancer effects.
|ug/m3 means micrograms per cubic meter, a measure of how
concentrated a substance is. For comparison, levels
of carbon monoxide, a pollutant that comes primarily
from motor vehicles, are usually several thousand
micrograms per cubic meter in New Jersey.
We have summarized the 1990 CEP estimates of the 39 nationally-critical
toxic pollutants for each county in New Jersey: