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Dictionary
Air Quality Index Dictionary

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Asthma: Asthma is a disease that can make it hard to breathe.

Atmosphere: Our atmosphere is the air and gases surrounding the earth.

Chemical: Chemicals are everywhere. There are chemicals inside your body, and there are chemicals in the ground, in the water, and in the air. You can see most chemicals, but not all chemicals. Some are clear or so small we can't see them. Some chemicals are good, like the medicine the doctor gives you when you are sick. Some chemicals are useful, but dangerous, like gasoline. Gasoline makes cars run, but you wouldn't want to drink it, because it would make you very sick. Some chemicals make the air dirty and cause pollution, like ozone.

Disease: A disease is a type of illness. A disease is something that makes you sick.

Global: Global means the whole world. global

Hazardous: Hazardous means dangerous.

Haze: Soot and dust make the air look hazy!

Ozone: Ozone can be good or bad. It all depends on where it is. Ozone is good when it is high up in our atmosphere. It protects us from sunburn. Ozone is bad when it is near the ground where we can breathe it in. You can't see ozone in the air. Bad ozone is sometimes called smog. It is formed when chemicals coming out of cars and factories are cooked by the hot sun. Ozone is more of a problem in the summer.

Pollutant: Pollutants are what make the air dirty and cause pollution. Sometimes you can see pollutants and sometimes you can't. Ozone is a pollutant that you can't see. Dust and soot are pollutants that you can see. Dust and soot are also called Particulate Matter.

Particulate Matter: Have you ever noticed a sunbeam with lots of little specks of dust floating in it? That is particulate matter. Particulate matter is mostly dust and soot so small that it floats in the air. Soot comes from anybody burning anything. When you burn gasoline in your car engine or burn wood in a campfire, soot happens! Dust comes from lots of places, too. When a company's business is to grind things up very small or when someone drives down a dirt road, dust is thrown into the air. Soot and dust make the air look hazy.

Smog: Bad ozone is sometimes called smog.

Soot: Soot comes from burning something. When you burn gasoline in your car engine or burn wood in a campfire, soot happens! You may have noticed the walls on the fireplace after a fire has burned. The walls are covered in a black powder. That is soot. soot

Stagnant: When air is still and not moving, and smells musty or stale, it is called stagnant. Water that is not moving also is called stagnant.