Recently, I saw a short documentary on air pollution. It is titled "Air Pollution: Harmful Particles".(video - 9 minutes - Sept. 2005)(Watch online-FREE)
(pictures to the right from the video - click on to enlarge)
Although it was made by TVLINK EUROPE (kind of like a public TV station for the European Union), the scientific info on air pollution and thier dangerous effects and the means they use to monitor and address the elimination of them, may be applicable here in the west side of Los Angeles.
In addition to this info being of value to cyclists, I think this info is of value to skaters, and pedestrians as well, since they all get exposed to more air pollution outside than folks who travel inside cars. They breath in a greater volume of air when cycling, skating, walking/running than when travelling in an enclosed motor vehicle.
The documentary includes a few interviews with scientists on the health effects of air pollution. There is some interesting slide presentations of lung cells that become injured by toxic chemicals, heavy metals, and other particulate matter.
They report that some of these tiny toxic substances can pass the lung barrier, enter the blood stream, and travel throughout the body.
This particulate toxins can cause irritation, inflammation, and become cancerous, according to the scientists interviewed.
I hope you enjoy the documentary. And I welcome your feedback on it.
You will find a full transcript and complimentary info on the subject at the link I gave for the documentary above.