Here’s something else chess players need to keep in check: air pollution.
That’s the bottom line of a newly published study co-authored by an MIT researcher, showing that chess players perform objectively worse and make more suboptimal moves, as measured by a computerized analysis of their games, when there is more fine particulate matter in the air.
More specifically, given a modest increase in fine particulate matter, the probability that chess players will make an error increases by 2.1 percentage points, and the magnitude of those errors increases by 10.8 percent. In this setting, at least, cleaner air leads to clearer heads and sharper thinking.
“We find that when individuals are exposed to higher levels of air pollution, they make more more mistakes, and they make larger mistakes,” says Juan Palacios, an economist in
— source Massachusetts Institute of Technology | Feb 1, 2023
Ultrafine particles form during combustion processes, for example when wood or biomass is burned, as well as in power and industrial plants. Alongside road traffic, large airports are a major source of these ultrafine particles, which are less than 100 millionths of a millimetre (100 nanometres) in size. Because they are so small, they can penetrate deep into the lower respiratory tract, overcome the air-blood barrier and, depending on their composition, cause inflammatory reactions in the tissue, for example. What’s more, ultrafine particles are suspected of being capable of triggering cardiovascular diseases.
the particles originated to a significant degree from synthetic jet oils and were particularly prevalent in the smallest particle classes, i.e. particles 10 to 18 nanometres in size. Such lubrication oils can enter the exhaust plume of an aircraft’s engines, for example through vents where nanometre-sized oil droplets and gaseous oil vapours are not fully retained.
— source Goethe University Frankfurt | Jan 9, 2023
Almost 2,000 times more particle pollution is produced by tire wear than is pumped out of the exhausts of modern cars, tests have shown.
The tire particles pollute air, water, and soil and contain a wide range of toxic organic compounds, including known carcinogens, the analysts say, suggesting tire pollution could rapidly become a major issue for regulators.
Air pollution causes millions of early deaths a year globally. The requirement for better filters has meant particle emissions from tailpipes in developed countries are now much lower in new cars, with those in Europe far below the legal limit. However, the increasing weight of cars means more particles are being thrown off by tires as they wear on the road.
The tests also revealed that tires produce more than 1 trillion ultrafine particles for each kilometer driven, meaning particles smaller than 23 nanometers. These are also
— source theguardian.com | Damian Carrington | Jun 10, 2022
Dirty air in the United States is linked to higher death rates from COVID-19, according to a new study from researchers at Harvard’s school of public health. Scientists found that people who lived in counties in with elevated levels of fine particulate matter known as PM 2.5 in the air were more likely to die from the virus.
PM 2.5 is one of the world’s most dangerous invisible pollutants. It’s made up of tiny particles (smaller than 2.5 micrometers across) that can seep into human lungs and bloodstreams. It comes from automobile exhaust and dirty power plants, as well as from burning wood and coal. Many studies have linked high levels of PM 2.5 to heart disease, chronic bronchitis, diabetes, and other respiratory illnesses. Researchers have estimated that PM 2.5 contributed to 4.2 million deaths worldwide in 2015 alone.
According to the Harvard analysis, which has yet to be peer reviewed, just a small increase in long-term levels of PM 2.5 — even one microgram per cubic meter of air — could increase COVID-19 death rates by 15
— source grist.org | Shannon Osaka | Apr 9, 2020
As many as 153 million premature deaths linked to air pollution could be avoided worldwide this century if governments speed up their timetable for reducing fossil fuel emissions, a new Duke University-led study finds. The study is the first to project the number of lives that could be saved, city by city, in 154 of the world’s largest urban areas if nations agree to reduce carbon emissions and limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C in the near future rather than postponing the biggest emissions cuts until later, as some governments have proposed. Kolkata and Delhi, India, lead the list of cities benefitting from accelerated emissions cuts with up to 4.4 million projected saved lives and up to 4 million projected saved lives, respectively.
— source Duke University | Mar 19, 2018
Researchers from Queen Mary University of London have found a clear association between those who lived near loud, busy roads, and were exposed to nitrogen dioxide (NO2) or PM2.5 — small particles of air pollution — and the development of larger right and left ventricles in the heart. The ventricles are important pumping chambers in the heart and, although these participants were healthy and had no symptoms, similar heart remodelling is seen in the early stages of heart failure. Higher exposures to the pollutants were linked to more significant changes in the structure of the heart. For every 1 extra µg per cubic metre of PM2.5 and for every 10 extra µg per cubic metre of NO2, the heart enlarges by approximately 1 per cent. In the study, average annual exposures to PM2.5 were well within UK guidelines (25µg per cubic metre), although they were approaching or past World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines (10µg per cubic metre).
— source Queen Mary University of London | Aug 3, 2018