What is fine dust? How harmful is it?

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What is fine dust? How harmful is it to you?

You have probably heard something about fine dust(or particulate matter) in the news. However, what many people only know about fine dust is that it’s “a type of” air pollution and it’s unhealthy. But what exactly is fine dust? And what are the causes? Read more about it here. We’ll also give you information about how to protect yourself from these invisible dust particles.

What is fine dust exactly?

The definition of fine dust cannot be described unambiguously. The RIVM (more info) compares it to a “kind of junk box containing materials of different sizes and chemical compositions”.

Fine dust is really just a whole collection of very small particles in the air. When physically described, we talk about the size of the dust particles and the amount of m³ particles in the air that we breathe in. The dimensions that are generally used are PM10, PM2.5, PM1 and PM0.1. These particles are not visible to the naked eye.

PM comes from the English word particulate matter: a literal translation of fine dust. To get an impression of how small these different fine dust particles can be, it’s good to realize that the size of a human hair is PM70. The diameter of the largest fine dust particles found in the air are therefore already 7 times smaller compared to the size of a hair. This should give a good idea of how small particulate matter is.

You can also chemically define particulate matter. In that case we look at which components the particles in the air consist of. Components of fine dust include heavy metals (arsenic, lead, nickel), water, carbon, salts, acids and a wide variety of organic substances, often the result of incomplete combustion processes (e.g. exhaust fumes from road traffic, airplanes landing and taking off etc).

What are the causes of fine dust?

Fine dust can have a natural origin as well as that it is caused by human actions. Natural processes that cause dust in the air are forest fires, volcanic eruptions, the splashing of seawater and soil matter being taken by the wind (for instance the sand from the Sahara).

80% is caused by humans

Fine dust in the air often occurs as a direct cause of human actions. For example, approximately 80% of the concentration of fine dust particles in the air is caused by humans.

Traffic and transport come first, which is the largest emitter. Here exhaust fumes are given off from cars, freight traffic, airplanes and (large) ships. Not far behind is the industrial sector. Not only factories, but also refineries and power stations make a significant contribution to the fine dust problem. In addition, the agricultural sector also plays a serious role: no less than 90% of the emissions of ammonia, for example, are caused by agriculture.

A factor that has recently been receiving more and more attention is households themselves. We have a number of serious fine dust pollutants in our houses. Think about cleaning products, body care sprays, cooking, pets and wood stoves.

How harmful is it to my health?

The WHO (World Health Organization) speaks of 7 million deaths a year worldwide from exposure to fine dust. Figures like this do not reassure you. But it’s important to put them in perspective. How bad is the fine dust problem in the Netherlands? And where does it come from? An interesting comparison is that in the Netherlands approximately 600 people die in traffic and 800 people die from a short-term peak exposure to fine dust every year.

We learn more about the effects of fine dust everyday. In fact it’s all based on size: the smaller the particles, the more harmful. For example, particles of PM0.1 enter your bloodstream directly. The Dutch live about a year shorter due to the exposure to fine dust. Scientific research has shown that there is a connection between the exposure to fine dust and the following diseases and conditions: cardiovascular diseases, respiratory diseases (asthma, COPD), cancer and Alzheimer’s. Read more about air purifiers for asthma.

Anyone can get complaints

Some people are more likely to suffer from fine dust health problems than others. Children, the elderly and people with respiratory diseases are especially vulnerable. But you can also get complaints if you don’t belong to one of these groups. Think of people who are frequently exposed to exhaust fumes, like office workers along a highway. Even if you live close to Schiphol you can suffer from fine dust health problems. In fact, researchers from the RIVM have established that healthy adults in that region, experience short-term decreases in lung and heart function at times when there is a high concentration of ultrafine dust particles in the air (source).

What can you do against fine dust?

The smaller the particles, the deeper they can penetrate our body. And the deeper the particles, the more harmful they will be. What can you do about this? The answer: pay more attention to the air quality in your working and living environment.

The first step is to measure the amount of fine dust in the air. This is possible with a fine dust meter. The device accurately indicates the air quality level of your indoor space. After you’ve done this, you can take the right action and clean the air. The best way to do that is with a good air purifier. The air purifiers from Extreme Air Products help to keep the PM concentration in your work or living environment to a minimum.

Do you need advice or more information?

According to the Dutch Lung Fund (Longfonds), the air quality in 1 in 7 houses is insufficient due to fine dust. By measuring fine dust you gain insight into the air quality in your environment. You can also determine the effectiveness of your air purifier. View our product page about the particulate matter meter or read more about the fine dust meter in our extensive advice. Do you have any further questions or would you like some free advice? Call +31 20 6464028. Or go directly to our range of fine dust meters:

    Contact with AXP




    Does an air purifier protect against the coronavirus?

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    Does an air purifier protect against the corona virus?

    An air purifier against the corona virus. Does it help? We will answer that question for you here. In the meantime, the virus has a tight grip on the world. It’s true that the government has drawn up a number of measures for protection. Nevertheless, there is a group in need of additional protection. You have to think of, for example, people who are still at work or in the office. According to some, an air purifier would help against the corona virus. Read more about it here.

    Current measures

    Before we discuss the effect of air purifiers against COVID-19, we advise you to follow the measures taken by the RIVM (more information). They are:

    • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water (for at least 20 seconds)
    • Do not shake hands
    • Stay 5 feet apart
    • Use tissue paper
    • Cough and sneeze into the inside of your elbow

    Does an air purifier remove corona from the air?

    The corona crisis has made people wonder whether it is possible to remove the corona virus from the air with an air purifier. The short answer to that is yes. To explain further, the COVID-19 virus is another form of ultra-fine particles in the eyes of an air purifier. An air purifier does not distinguish between a virus and a particle. He picks up both. Good air purifiers filter viruses and particles. This way you can also remove the corona virus from the air.

    The airborne coronavirus also needs a carrier, such as droplets, fine dust and pollen. The virus sticks to fine dust, for example, so that it spreads in a room. Fortunately, air purifiers remove these types of particles with the help of a fine-mesh filter technique.

    The best technique for removing corona from the air

    There are several air purifier sellers who claim to have a good working filter technique against corona. Yet the difference in performance, between what they promise and how good it actually works, is often large. Extreme Air Products has developed a unique patented air circulation and filter technique that really does work: air displacement. In fact, this technique has been tested as the best by the TNO: an air purifier with displacement removes fine dust and other small particles for no less than 99.99% (!) from the air and has up to 40% more efficiency than the air purifiers using regular circulation.

    An air purifier with air displacement technology guarantees the cleanest and healthiest air in a room. It protects against the smallest particles such as fine dust, pollen, exhaust gases, bacteria and viruses (such as the corona virus). Corona air purifier experiences also prove this to be true.

    Workplaces need extra protection

    Not everyone is reassured about the measures taken by the government. Additional protection against the corona virus is needed, we hear from our customers. For example, workplaces such as an office, school, dental practice, healthcare institution, gym and a nail studio benefit from clean, healthy air. An air purifier with air displacement technology offers these workplaces their desired protection.

    An air purifier does not offer a guaranteed protection against corona

    Keep in mind that air purifiers do not guarantee protection from the corona virus in your room. On the other hand, you do reduce the risk of contamination with a good air purifier. When using an air purifier against the corona virus, it’s important to run it as long and often as possible. It’s best to leave it on continuously. This will optimise the cleaning effect. As mentioned, also follow the measures of the RIVM carefully to keep the risk of infection as small as possible.

    What is the best air purifier against the corona virus?

    The EDC650 UV-C is the best choice to remove coronavirus particles from your office or workplace. This virus fighting air purifier can do this thanks to a combination of unparalleled filter effectiveness, UV-C light and a very high capacity. UV-C light makes viruses and bacteria harmless before they enter the HEPA filter.

    The EDC650 brings even more benefits. Firstly, it consumes little energy and is quiet. Second, it lasts for years without too much maintenance.

    More information about the EDC650 UV-C can be found on the product page.

    EDC650 fine dust air purifier

    Do you need some advice or more information?

    View our product page with air purifiers or read more about the air purifier in our extensive advice. Do you have any further questions or would you like some free personal advice? Call +31 20 6464028 or go directly to our range of air purifiers:

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      Pellet stove fine dust, is it dangerous?

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      Fine dust from a pellet stove, is it dangerous?

      A pellet stove is a sustainable way to heat a room. But make no mistake, because the truth is that a pellet stove also emits a lot of pollution. In addition, pellet stove fine dust is dangerous for your health. Especially if you live in a city or close to a highway or airport. The question is to what extent a pellet stove is unhealthy in the home.

      What does a pellet stove do?

      Winter is approaching and in the Netherlands the stoves are turned on on a large-scale again. That means a period is coming with a lot of fine dust in the air. A pellet stove heats up a room by burning wood pellets. Fine dust particles are released during this process. The ignition pattern in the stove causes the wood pellets to burn, because it creates a flame. The heat from the flame rises and is blown into the room thanks to a fan.

      How much fine dust does it emit?

      Pellet stove experiences show that they are cleaner than wood stoves. Wood stoves emit about 3.5 kilograms of fine dust per 1000 hours, while for pellet stoves that’s “only” 0.68 kilograms. A pellet stove is therefore more environmental friendly than a wood stove, but they still emit more ultra-fine dust than heating on gas or electricity. Pellet stove ultrafine dust is a risk for vulnerable groups. Think of people with bronchitis, asthma and lung complaints.

      What health complaints does fine dust from a pellet stove give?

      With occasional use you do not have to worry immediately. If you use a pellet stove as the main heating, this will lead to potential health problems in the long term. People with allergies are especially at risk.

      Various authorities have been warning people for the health risks of fine dust for years. According to the Long Fonds (source), an increased concentration of ultra-fine particles at home leads to the following complaints:

      • Fatigue
      • Shortness of breath
      • Infections of the respiratory system
      • Lung diseases such as asthma (read more about air purifiers for asthma)

      How can you protect yourself against pellet stove fine dust?

      We do not recommend a separate fine dust filter for your pellet stove, because the filter effectiveness is often disappointing. So what is a good way to remove fine dust from a pellet stove in the house? We recommend the use of a pellet stove fine dust air purifier.

      Air purifiers are very effective in removing fine dust. They also remove other air pollution from the air, such as pollen, bacteria and viruses. With an air purifier you live and breathe in the most optimal indoor air. We recommend the EA30 air purifier for living rooms with pellet stoves. This top pellet stove air purifier has a patented filter technique that removes fine dust with an effectiveness of 99.99%.

      Thanks to its sleek design, the EA30 will fit in well with your interior

      Do you want to measure the fine dust emissions from your pellet stove?

      According to the Dutch Lung Fund (Longfonds), the air quality in 1 in 7 houses is insufficient due to fine dust. By measuring the fine dust emission from your pellet stove, you gain insight into the air quality in your environment. You also determine the effectiveness of your air purifier. View our product page about the fine dust meter or read more about the fine dust meter in our extensive advice. Do you have any further questions or would you like some personal free advice? Call +31 20 6464028 or go directly to our range of fine dust meters:

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        Fine dust and the Working Conditions Act, what do you need to know?

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        Ultra fine dust and the Working Conditions Act, what do you need to know?

        In the workplace, ultra fine dust is very harmful and even deadly in the long run. Therefore , the problem requires a strict ultra-fine dust occupational health and safety law. The working conditions provide clear guidelines for a healthy working environment. The Dutch Lung Fund (Longfonds) has been warning people for years about the dangers of ultra-fine dust. The risks are particularly high in densely populated areas such as the Randstad and Schiphol. Read on for more information about the health and safety regulations for ultrafine dust. What can we expect in 2020 and the future?

        The current status of the ultra fine dust health and safety regulations

        We have to conclude that there are still no health and safety regulations for ultra fine dust. The government has not taken any concrete step yet to frame this problem. RIVM, on the other hand, is working intensively on it, see also the ultrafine dust research at Schiphol. However, the ultra-fine dust research results are not expected until 2021. For the time being, entrepreneurs must therefore determine their own ultra-fine dust standards on the basis of their own knowledge and experience.

        Although there is not yet an occupational health and safety law for ultrafine dust, you can say that any form of ultrafine dust, caused by production processes and transport, is undesirable in the ambient air. Long-term exposure to dangerous ultra-fine dust, in the workplace in particular, creates many health risks.

        Which complaints arise with long-term exposure to ultra-fine dust?

        Ultra-fine dust is the cause of various health complaints. Risk groups such as the elderly, children with asthma and people with allergies are particularly vulnerable. The following complaints have been scientifically proven:

        • Shortness of breath
        • Coughing
        • Wheezing
        • Lung complaints
        • Heart complaints

        The following diseases have not yet been scientifically proven, but are related to ultra-fine dust:

        • Parkinson’s
        • Dementia

        Fine dust regulations in 2020, what can we expect in the future?

        More and more people and authorities are aware of how dangerous ultrafine dust is. In the first place, this can be derived from the investigations that are ongoing at the RIVM. And secondly, from the recent incentive from the Dutch Cabinet to draw up standards for ultra-fine dust. The government is expected to quickly draw up an ultra-fine dust health and safety standard. Especially because the regulations for PM2.5 emissions have been tightened considerably from 2020 onwards. From 1 January 2020, an annual limit value of 20 µg / m3 will apply.

        Need advice or more information?

        According to the Dutch Lung Fund (Longfonds), the air quality in 1 in 7 buildings is insufficient due to fine dust. By measuring fine dust levels you gain insight into the air quality of your environment. You also determine the effectiveness of your air purifier. Take a look at our product page about the fine dust meter or read more about the fine dust meter in our extensive advice. Do you have any further questions or would you like some free personal advice? Call +31 20 6464028 or go directly to our range of fine dust meters:

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          Fine dust printer: how dangerous is it?

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          Fine dust printer: how dangerous is it?

          Printers emit fine dust. Did you know? How big is the chance of getting sick from being close to this so-called “fine dust printer”? In the office you know better than anyone how important printers are. Just to print a manual, or an invoice … you know what it’s like.

          The fine dust printer causes respiratory problems and respiratory complaints in people. In this blog, we answer all questions related to the health and use of printers in the workplace. For example, is a printer harmful in the workplace? And to what extent are employees bothered by printers in their work environment? Read on and learn more about the “fine dust printer”.

          What kind of substances does a printer emit?

          Not everyone is aware that printers emit various substances in addition to paper. However, it differs per printer, because it depends on a number of factors such as the type of paper, the type of ink, the toners and cartridges. The various particles and gases that are released during printing are shown below.

          Particles:

          • Fine dust
          • Ultrafine dust
          • Paper dust

          Gasses:

          • Ozone
          • Toner powder
          • Nitrogen dioxide

          What kind of printers emit fine dust?

          There are two types of printers on the market: the laser printer (a fine dust printer) and the inkjet printer (a printer without fine dust). Laser printers and copiers use toners. Toners emit harmful dust particles through combustion processes. An inkjet printer, on the other hand, uses liquid ink and does not emit fine dust.

          Unfortunately, almost all offices use laser printers. These fine dust printers are mostly chosen over inkjet printers, because they last longer and are cheaper to buy and maintain.

          How harmful are printers to people in the workplace?

          There are employees who are exposed to high concentrations of printer fine dust for a long time. These people belong to the so-called risk group. The people in this risk-group who are vulnerable are, for example, people who carry out maintenance on printers. But also employees who work close to a fine dust printer, especially if the printer is used intensively.

          A fine dust printer increases the risk of an allergic reaction, which will cause watery eyes, skin problems and irritated airways. These symptoms are referred to by the Working Conditions Act by the term toner disease.

          What does the legislation say about printers in workspaces?

          Printers and copiers that produce more than 5000 copies a month should be placed in a separate area with adequate ventilation. More than 50,000 prints per month require placement in a reproduction room with good dust extraction.

          Does an air purifier help against printer fine dust?

          One way to protect yourself and your colleagues against fine dust from printers is to place the devices in a separate, well-ventilated area. The disadvantage, however, is that many offices do not have an extra or separate space to move the printers.

          If it’s not possible to move the existing printers, what can you do? The answer to that is the use of a powerful air purifier! A purifier, also called a printer filter, not only removes all present fine dust particles from the air, it also improves the air quality, making office employees more productive.

          Studies have also shown that employees report sick less at work when the air quality is good. The best printer filter for offices against fine dust nuisance is the EDC650 (has a fine dust filter effectiveness of more than 99%).

          Need advice or more information?

          View our product page with air purifiers or read more about the air purifier in our extensive advice. Do you have any further questions or would you like some free personal advice? Call +31 20 6464028 or go directly to our range of air purifiers:

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            Fine dust in the office is harmful to employees

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            Fine dust in the office, how harmful is it to employees?

            Research has shown that an average of 2000 ultrafine particles are swirling around per cm3 in every clean office. Every employee of a company has to deal with it: fine dust in the office. Should employees be concerned about this? Unfortunately yes. Fine dust in the workplace is bad for your health. People also get sick from long term exposure to high concentrations of fine dust. It’s therefore no surprise that fine dust contributes to 4 percent of the entire burden of disease in the Netherlands. It’s time that entrepreneurs started to take these harmful substances seriously in the office.

            Fine dust sources in the office

            It’s useful to know where fine dust is formed in the office, so we can tackle the problem at the source. Machines, in general, are the biggest culprits in a workplace. Think of printers and computers. Printers in particular contribute a lot to the poor air quality at work. Is your office located next to a busy road or in a big city? There is a good chance that, without knowing it, you are working in an environment with a lot of (ultra) fine dust.

            Health complaints due to fine dust at work

            People who work in an environment full of fine dust often have to deal with the following symptoms: respiratory complaints, skin complaints, skin irritations and headaches. Fine dust in the office is also a known cause of allergic reactions. Such as, for example, skin complaints and asthma attacks. So people with allergies and respiratory diseases.. Be warned! Especially when working in a big city or on a busy road.

            Measuring air quality at the workplace

            Do you lack insight into the air quality in the office? In that case a professional measurement will offer a solution. Measuring fine dust in the office is a good indicator of general air quality. Fine dust can be measured in two ways: by an external party or by a measuring device. We recommend a fine dust meter. This price-friendly device accurately indicates the amount of fine dust in a room. The device is also portable so that it can be taken anywhere and used.

            Remove fine dust from the office

            Fortunately, fine dust in an office space can be prevented in a quick and easy way. With a good air purifier you filter and remove all harmful dust particles from the air, including ultra-fine dust. Our air purifiers work with a patented AIH filter technology. With this technique, the filter effectiveness is 99.98%. The EA30 air purifier is ideal for offices. This model is super quiet, has a low energy consumption and a high filter capacity.

            The EA30 is perfect for solving fine dust problems in the office

            Benefits of clean air in the workplace

            Using a good air purifier keeps your office clean and fresh. This has a positive effect on productivity, image and absenteeism. In addition, it reduces concentration problems, fatigue and nose complaints. A healthy workplace not only ensures that your workplace is clean, but also that your employees perform their daily tasks in a fit and satisfied way.

            Need advice or more information?

            Take a look at our product page with air purifiers or read more about the air purifier in our extensive advice. Do you have any further questions or would you like some free personal advice? Call +31 20 6464028 or go directly to our range of air purifiers:

              Contact with AXP




              Fine dust at home? How dangerous is it and what can you do about it?

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              Fine dust at home, is it dangerous and how do you get rid of it?

              A high concentration of fine dust in the house can often be prevented and it can also be taken out of the air when it is already there. How can you reduce the level of fine dust in your home? And from what concentration is it harmful? We are happy to tell you more about it.

              In the Netherlands, 1 in 7 houses suffer from a fine dust concentration that is too high. This has emerged from research by the Dutch Lung Fund (Longfonds). Fine dust may not be visible to the naked eye, but it‘s harmful. Protecting your home against these dust particles is therefore very important.

              Where does fine dust come from?

              ‘Almost 80% of the amount of fine dust in the air is the result of human actions.’ is what the RIVM says. The presence of fine dust in the house is mainly due to combustion processes. Think of heating a wood stove, fireplace or pallet stove. The air that arises during cooking and frying is also an important source of fine dust. Especially when roasting meat and stir-frying vegetables. Finally, smoking cigarettes and burning candles at home also causes fine dust problems.

              How much fine dust at home is harmful to your health?

              The more fine dust is present in the air, the worse the health problems are. In the Netherlands, fine dust is responsible for about 4 percent of the entire burden of disease in the Netherlands. Well-known health complaints caused by fine dust include a reduction in lung condition, worsening of lung complaints (wheezing, coughing and shortness of breath) and inflammation in the lungs. People who are particularly at risk of these symptoms are:

              • People with asthma or other lung diseases (read more about air purifiers for asthma)
              • People with cardiovascular disease
              • Elderly
              • Children

              Is it possible to prevent fine dust at home?

              The fine dust in your house is created automatically in many daily tasks, for example, by roasting a tasty piece of meat. This is why you can never completely remove fine dust in your home. What you can do is limit the sources of fine dust as much as possible. For example, by making your home smoke-free. Do you have a fireplace, pellet stove or wood stove? Then it is wise not to use it that often. Finally, always turn on the extractor hood when you cook or invest in a good extractor hood. This way you can be sure that you limit the fine dust emissions during cooking.

              How do you get fine dust out of your house?

              You naturally want to reduce fine dust if you find it in your house. An air purifier offers a solution. This unit has the task of extracting polluted air from the air present. An air purifier has the ability to remove fine dust in a quick and effective way from your home. The air purifier EA15, for example, has a fine dust filter effectiveness of 99.98%. In short, an air purifier is an excellent investment if you want to remove fine dust from your home.

              Need advice or more information?

              By measuring fine dust in your home, you gain insight into the air quality of your environment. You also determine the effectiveness of your air purifier. Take a look at our product page about the fine dust meter or read more about the fine dust meter in our extensive advice. Do you have any further questions or would you like some free personal advice? Call +31 20 6464028 or go directly to our range of fine dust meters:

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                Fine dust coming from highway, health risks for local residents

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                Fine dust coming from highway, how do you protect yourself as a local resident?

                Fine dust coming from the highway or a busy road causes a lot of concern among local residents. This is not without reason. Living next to a highway or busy road has serious health risks. In this blogpost we’ll discuss the risks that close residents of highways run and what they can do about it themselves. Because there is a solution to keep out fine dust in the house.

                How can the air quality next to the highway be so bad?

                Road traffic is the main cause of fine dust around highways. The hazardous dust particles are released into the air by car and truck exhaust fumes. Because there is a lot of traffic on the highway, a significant amount of air pollution is also released. That is why it’s not advised to live next to a highway or busy road due to fine dust.

                From what distance do you live near a highway?

                According to the Dutch Asthma Fund, there must be at least 300 meters between a school and a highway. The same distance applies to residences. People who live less than 300 meters from a highway are therefore unprotected against fine dust coming from the highway.

                The number of people who fall into this category is large. Large cities such as Amsterdam, The Hague and Rotterdam are surrounded by highways. The residents of these cities are therefore at risk from the fine dust car emissions.

                Living next to a busy road or highway, what are the particulate matter risks?

                Experts have said, in a broadcast of the television program Zembla, that people who live next to a highway have an increased risk of respiratory and cardiovascular diseases.

                According to research agency RIVM, it can also cause asthma attacks, shortness of breath and coughing-fits. Patients with asthma and other lung diseases are extra vulnerable to the small dust particles. According to lung doctors, fine dust shortens the lives of the Dutch by more than 1 year. It’s therefore very important to protect yourself well against fine dust coming from the highway.

                Fine dust coming from the highway, how do local residents protect themselves?

                Many people live next to or close by a busy road or highway, with lots of health risks as a result. The question is, how can these people protect themselves against fine dust emissions from road traffic? Since moving is expensive and not very practical, it’s not really a solution.

                What does offer a solution is installing an air purifier! The EA30 air purifier, for example, has a patented technology that filters out 99.98% of the fine dust in a room. This super effective air purifier is specially made to keep your home free of fine dust. Do you live in an area with a lot of road traffic? Then we advise you to place such a device in your house.

                Need advice or more information?

                According to the Dutch Lung Fund, the air quality in 1 in 7 houses is insufficient due to fine dust. By measuring fine dust yourself, you can gain insight into the air quality in your environment. You also determine the effectiveness of your air purifier. Take a look at our product page about the fine dust meter or read more about the fine dust meter in our extensive advice. Do you have any further questions or would you like some free personal advice? Call +31 20 6464028 or go directly to our range of fine dust meters:

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                  Fine dust map: Europe and the Netherlands

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                  Fine dust map of Europe and the Netherlands

                  The fine dust map shows you where in the world this form of pollution occurs most. Long-term exposure to fine dust is potentially deadly. Even in low concentrations there is a great health risk. In this blog, we’ll give you the current status of fine dust in Europe and fine dust in the Netherlands. With the help of a fine dust map, the density per place is displayed and evaluated. Where is this form of air pollution most common?

                  Fine dust map Europe

                  As an annual limit value, the European standard for fine dust PM2.5 is about 25 micrograms per cubic meter of air. But the standard set by the WHO is only 10 micrograms per cubic meter. According to researchers at Utrecht University, a large part of the European population is exposed to this high concentration. A group of researchers from 13 European countries reached this conclusion after studying 22 existing studies. The researchers are concerned that the risk of premature death also remains above the European standard.

                  The image below shows the concentration of fine dust in Europe. The fine dust map of Europe shows that the concentration in Western Europe is one of the highest on the continent. This can be explained by the fact that many combustion processes take place in this area. Especially in traffic and industry. The fine dust map also shows that Scandinavia relatively scores the best in terms of air quality.

                  The fine dust map of Europe shows that the areas in red and orange are the most exposed.

                  Fine dust map of the Netherlands

                  What about fine dust in the Netherlands in 2019? The fine dust map of the Netherlands shows that the highest concentration occurs around the Randstad and North Brabant. The causes of this are busy highways, large-scale industries and a high population density. In addition, the presence of airports (such as Schiphol) and shipping ports also increase the amount of fine dust in the air.

                  The research shows that the risk of a person dying from fine dust increases 7 percent per increase of 5 mcg / m3. “That is the difference between a busy street in the city and a place without the influence of traffic,” says researcher Rob Beelen in the NOS news.

                  Do you live in the Randstad, North Brabant or close to a busy highway? Then there is a chance that you live in an area with a lot of air pollution. A solution for this is to use an air purifier. For more information and advice you can consult the fine dust air purifier page.

                  The fine dust map below (source: RIVM) clearly shows which areas in the Netherlands are most polluted.

                  Fine dust map of the Netherlands: do you want to live somewhere with little air pollution? In that case the best place to be is the Wadden Islands.

                  Fine dust in the largest Dutch cities

                  What about pollution in large cities such as Amsterdam, The Hague and Rotterdam? In Amsterdam air pollution is still a major problem. The main causes of this are road traffic and the proximity of Schiphol. Rotterdam and The Hague are also affected by air pollution, mainly due to the industry. According to RIVM researcher Paul Fischer, air pollution is not only a major problem in the large cities, but throughout the Netherlands. “In the Netherlands we are dealing with a so-called blanket of air pollution. Especially when it comes to fine dust.”

                  The question is: how can we improve the air quality in the Netherlands? The Health Council advocates a thorough approach to diesel vehicles and ammonia emissions from livestock farming. According to the Health Council, these measures yield the most health benefits for the entire Dutch population.

                  Would you like to measure the fine dust concentration in your surroundings yourself?

                  According to the Dutch Lung fund (Longfonds), the air quality in 1 in 7 houses is insufficient due to fine dust. By measuring fine dust you gain insight into the air quality of your environment. You can also determine the effectiveness of your air purifier. Take a look at our product page about the fine dust meter or read more about the fine dust meter in our extensive advice. Do you have any further questions or would you like some free personal advice? Call +31 20 6464028 or go directly to our range of fine dust meters:

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                    Fine dust, air quality and absenteeism

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                    Fine dust, air quality and absenteeism

                    Scientists say there are no safe levels of fine dust. Any concentration of it can be bad for humans. Short and long-term exposure to fine dust is associated with, among other things, health problems like lung diseases (asthma, bronchitis, COPD) and cardiovascular diseases. Ultra-fine particles can enter the bloodstream and also have an effect on the nervous system and brain. The WHO’s international agency for cancer research has labeled fine dust as a carcinogen. (source: Volkskrant 22/08/2017)

                    Fine dust is bad for employees

                    Fine dust is a serious danger to the health of employees. Poor air quality means that employees are less concentrated on their work and therefore less productive.

                    We spend about 25% of our time at work and almost 80% of our life indoors. We breathe about 24,000 times a day. The cleaner the air we breathe, the more comfortable we feel. The healthier we live and the better we perform.

                    According to the WHO (World Health Organization), fine dust causes 7,000,000 deaths per year. According to estimates by the RIVM, poor air quality causes more than 10,000 premature deaths per year in the Netherlands. Scientific studies show that fine dust causes cancer and there is a proven effect on the development of Alzheimer’s.

                    Fine dust, air quality and absenteeism

                    Absenteeism in the Netherlands costs us as a society 11.5 billion euros per year. Hay fever alone costs employers 3 billion euros a year.
                    The numbers don’t lie. Optimising the air quality in the workplace pays off and pays for itself quickly.

                    If we minimise the presence of pollen, allergens and fine dust particles in the air of the workplace, it not only reduces absenteeism. Employees become more productive, can concentrate better and their sense of well-being increases. Besides, it’s much appreciated if the employer makes a visible effort to optimise working conditions.

                    Air purifiers to improve air quality

                    Ventilation systems in buildings claim to block fine dust. However, the filters used in such devices are not as effective as they lead you to believe. Their main purpose is to protect the installations themselves. Fine dust particles smaller than PM10, let alone PM1, or ultra-fine dust PM0.1 are not filtered.

                    It’s a more sustainable solution to optimise air quality with a recirculation system. Such a device is placed in the office itself and recirculates and filters the air on the work floor. Pollen, allergens, viruses and fine dust in the air are dealt with.

                    Extreme Air Products has a worldwide patent for recirculation systems that work on the basis of air displacement. We filter even the smallest dust particles from the air almost imperceptibly and we guarantee optimal air quality on the work floor. Read more about air quality here.

                    The investment often pays for itself within a year. Fewer employees infect each other during the annual recurring flu epidemic. Fewer employees report sick with hay fever complaints. Employees feel less fatigued and more focused. In short, labor productivity increases and absenteeism decreases!

                    Download our white paper for more information about the air quality in workplaces and what you can do to improve it! Click here for more information about our high end air purifiers.

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                    Need advice or more information?

                    Take a look at our product page with air purifiers or read more about the air purifier in our extensive advice. Do you have any further questions or would you like some free personal advice? Call +31 20 6464028 or go directly to our range of air purifiers:

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