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Integrated Science Assessment (ISA) for Particulate Matter

EPA announced the availability of the final report of the Integrated Science Assessment for Particulate Matter  in an January 27, 2020 Federal Register Notice.

The Issue

Particulate matter (PM) is a complex mixture of small particles and liquid droplets found in the air. Particulate matter is of great concern because it is associated with serious health effects such as nonfatal heart attacks, irregular heartbeat, aggravated asthma, decreased lung function, and premature death. PM contributes to haze, damages materials including, stone, glass, and metals, and affects the climate, both through direct effects on radiative forcing and indirect effects involving cloud processes.

EPA Action

EPA scientists are evaluating the latest scientific information to better understand the relationship between exposure to particulate matter and health and welfare effects, who may be at increased risk to these effects, how particles form in the atmosphere, and what the contributions are from various sources in different regions of the country.

The Clean Air Act requires EPA to periodically review the science for six major air pollutants, including PM. EPA's Center for Public Health and Environmental Assessment (CPHEA) develops Integrated Science Assessments (ISAs) that summarize the science related to the health and welfare effects of these pollutants. ISAs provide a comprehensive review of the policy-relevant scientific literature published since the last National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) review and are a critical part of the scientific basis for updating the NAAQS. This ISA represents EPA’s latest evaluation of the scientific literature on the potential health and welfare effects associated with PM and updates the 2009 Integrated Science Assessment for Particulate Matter.

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History of the Particulate Matter Assessments

   
Dec 2019 EPA released the final report of the Integrated Science Assessment for Particulate Matter (EPA/600/R-19/188). [Federal Register Notice Jan 2020] This is the latest version.
Oct 2018 EPA released the document Integrated Science Assessment for Particulate Matter (External Review Draft) (EPA/600/R-18/179) for public review and comment. [October 23, 2018 Federal Register Notice]
Dec 2012 EPA released a provisional assessment of recent studies on particulate matter collected since the release of the 2009 Particulate Matter Integrated Science Assessment.
Dec 2009 EPA released the final report of the Integrated Science Assessment for Particulate Matter (EPA/600/AR-08/139F). [Federal Register Dec 15, 2009]
Oct 2004 EPA released the Air Quality Criteria Document for Particulate Matter (Final, 2004) (EPA 600/P-99/002).
Apr 1996 EPA released the Air Quality Criteria Document for Particulate Matter (Final, 1996) (EPA 600/P-95/001).
Aug 1994 EPA released the Supplement to the Second Addendum (1986) to Air Quality Criteria for Particulate Matter and Sulfur Oxides (1982): Assessment of New Findings on Sulfur Dioxide and Acute Exposure Health Effects in Asthmatic Individuals.
Dec 1986 EPA published the Second Addendum to Air Quality Criteria for Particulate Matter and Sulfur Oxides (1982): Assessment of New Findings on Sulfur Dioxide and Acute Exposure Health Effects in Asthmatic Individuals.
Dec 1982 EPA released the Air Quality Criteria for Particulate Matter and Sulfur Oxides (Final, 1982) (EPA/600/8-82/029).
1977 EPA released an update to Air Quality Criteria Document in response to specific requirements of Section 108 of the Clean Air Act, as amended in 1977.
1969 EPA published the first Air Quality Criteria for Particulate Matter and Air Quality Criteria for Sulfur Oxides.

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Peer Reviewed Literature

While working on the Integrated Science Assessment for Particulate Matter (2019), EPA used the Health and Environmental Research Online (HERO) database to augment the underlying literature that supported the draft assessment.

See: ISA-Particulate Matter (2018) HERO Project page

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