Thursday, May 6

Volatile Organic Compounds And the Transportation Industry

Volatile organic compounds (VOC)s are organic chemicals that have a high vapor pressure at ordinary room temperature. VOCs can include both human-made and naturally occurring chemical compounds.

According to a new market research report “VOC Sensors and Monitors Market by Device Type (Sensors and Monitors), Application (Industrial Process Monitoring, Environmental Monitoring, Air Purification and Monitoring, and Leak Detection), and Geography — Global Forecast to 2023,” the VOC sensors and monitors market is projected to increase from $140 billion in 2018 to $178 million by 2023, at a compound annual growth rate of 4.6% over the five-year period.

The growth of this essential market can be attributed to a wide variety of factors, including increased enforcement of occupational health and safety regulations by the federal government.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulates VOC exposure in the workplace. Similarly, VOCs that are classified as hazardous materials are regulated by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration while being transported.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration reports that roughly 5.9 million commercial motor vehicle drivers operate in the United States. Plus, nearly 12 million trucks, locomotives, rail cars, and vessels move goods over the transportation network.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), though the transportation sector is responsible for less than 10% of VOCs emissions across the U.S., VOC protection is still an important step when it comes to domestic and international air pollution.

VOCs and other air pollution emitted from transportation contributed to smog, soot, and poor air quality, which has negative impacts on the health and welfare of Americans and the environment as whole. Here are some of the environmental effects of VOCs:

  • Direct effects and after photochemical conversion to secondarily pollutants.
  • Ground ozone formation.
  • Damage to materials and buildings.

According to a report by CBC Marketplace, VOC levels over 500 parts per billion (PPB) could cause severe health problems for people with chemical sensitivities. Additionally, effects on human health from VOCs tend to be chronic, rather than acute, but often include:

  • Cancer
  • Fatigue
  • Skin and eye irritation
  • Respiratory illness
  • Headache

As VOCs continue to spread as a result of improper secured gas tanks and other transportation issues, consumer products need to be accounted for, as well. According to a new National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) study published in the journal Science, consumer products such as shampoo, cleaning products and paint now contribute as much to emitted VOCs in cities as transportation emissions.

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