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 Definition The hazy, unhealthy polluted air which accumulates over cities and other regions under certain conditions. [d] [e]
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 Workgroup categories Earth Sciences, Chemistry and Engineering [Categories OK]
 Subgroup categories:  Chemical Engineering and Environmental Engineering
 Talk Archive 1  English language variant American English

Fresh restart

I've archived the previous talk page in hopes of leaving the past behind and beginning anew. It remains intact at Smog/Archive 1 for anyone's review. Anyone can bring anything back here, too, if they feel the need. D. Matt Innis 14:19, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

This page could certainly contain some material that may lead to heated discussion. Please do keep it professional. Discussion about content and style should follow our guidelines for allowing expert editor oversight and subsequent rulings. In cases of dispute, use the workgroups, ME, and Ombudsman to help guide the content of this page. D. Matt Innis 14:37, 30 January 2011 (UTC)

Matt. I am bringing back a copy of the earlier comments because I believe they were all quite constructive. The history of the material brought back remains in the archived section because I don't know how to bring that back as well. If you could do that, it would be nice.Milton Beychok 16:28, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
That's fine, Milt. The history remains on this page. If anyone is interested, they can look it up. D. Matt Innis 17:55, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

Comments copied from talk page of my sandbox where the article draft was created

Revised lede to incorporate many of the suggestions by Anthony Sebastian.

Anthony, I had already considered using the word "portmanteau" to describe "smog" ( as was done in Wikipedia's smog article ) but decided it was too "fancy". Therefore, I chose to describe it as a "combination" word, which is simple and self-explanatory.

Other than that, I believe I have incorporated your suggestions in my re-write of the lede while still retaining the technical integrity of the wording. For example, it is not the polluted air that produces the precursors ... they are emitted into the air by vehicles and industrial activities. Thanks much, Milton Beychok 04:40, 22 August 2010 (UTC)

First comments

New York looks rather pretty in that picture. Designer smog?

Maybe the photographer used a color filter or maybe that is what it really looked like at that moment in time. Milton Beychok 22:21, 22 August 2010 (UTC)

Personal taste, but I hate "so-called"; it tends to imply doubt of the term. Certainly, there was a 1952 event in London.

Done. Milton Beychok 22:21, 22 August 2010 (UTC)

The first paragraph of "photochemical smog" doesn't seem to be about photochemical smog. Move it up to the previous section, and observe there's the original kind, but most now is photochemical, as a transition. Consider subheads in this section, perhaps "precursors" and "simplified reactions".

I think the first paragraph of "photochemical smog" is okay where it is ...but let me think about it a bit. Milton Beychok 22:21, 22 August 2010 (UTC)
Added the subheads for "precursors" and "simplified reactions", but a bit more wordy. Milton Beychok 22:25, 22 August 2010 (UTC)

Under "areas affected", make the headings consistent at country level. Haven't there been significant British incidents besides London? Birmingham vaguely comes to mind.

Country level headings done. There probably have been other significant British incidents. Perhaps others can add them after I upload the article into the article namespace. Milton Beychok 22:21, 22 August 2010 (UTC)

In the US, while LA is obviously the poster child, my informal impression is that Denver is worth mentioning, along with its particular topography. I'd be interested in hearing your opinion on their banning of wood-burning fireplaces. What about Pittsburgh before the industries cleaned up? Was that smog or some other air pollutant?

As for Denver and Pittsburgh, again perhaps others can add them after I upload the article into the article namespace. As for banning wood-burning fireplaces, I have no opinion. Milton Beychok 22:21, 22 August 2010 (UTC)
I have now added a subsection on Denver. Milton Beychok 02:15, 23 August 2010 (UTC)

As far as my birthplace of northern New Jersey, I'm not sure we called it smog, or necessarily air...just the burning tires, refinery waste, and Pig Farms of Secaucus, all fermenting over the Jersey Meadows. I remember holding my ground when someone, in a college lab, smashed a 5-pint bottle of butyric acid, and the professor said "you're from New Jersey, aren't you?" (turns out that it cleans up nicely with a slurry of activated charcoal in cupric sulfate solution).

--Howard C. Berkowitz 20:29, 22 August 2010 (UTC)

Continental Europe

The first thing I noticed was that continental Europe is not mentioned. Are the air pollution problems of this region not classified as smog? I think that, at least, 30-t40 years ago there was indeed smog.

Now we have ozone warnings, and "Feinstaub" (fine dust?) warnings. --Peter Schmitt 08:43, 23 August 2010 (UTC)

Oh, not Europe, but certainly important: Beijing. --Peter Schmitt 09:24, 23 August 2010 (UTC)

Peter, the exclusion of Europe (other than London) was not intentional. Just did not run across any references that discussed smog in Europe. I will make an effort to find some. Thanks, Milton Beychok 15:45, 23 August 2010 (UTC)
Of course, you know that you need not contribute a complete article ...
As for Beijing: You may remember that they made special efforts to improve air condition during the 2008 Olympic games. --Peter Schmitt 23:38, 23 August 2010 (UTC)
Yes, Peter, I know that I need not write a complete article before uploading it into the article namespace ... but I like to make it as complete as I can, in a reasonable amount of time, before it leaves my sandbox. I have been doing that for over a year now. But thanks anyway. Milton Beychok 03:06, 24 August 2010 (UTC)

Some minor revisions and a suggestion

Hi Milt, I did a few edits directly and like the article as it is. The only thing I find not clear is the selection of the affected areas to be covered in detail — I think this would benefit from some sort of global ranking in terms of smog indicators. For the US, I found this list, and for the world, there are similar lists. --Daniel Mietchen 21:31, 25 August 2010 (UTC)

Daniel, thanks for your edits. The only one that I changed back to the original form was the TOC location which I feel results in a better overall appearance. Other than that, all of your revisions were fine.
As for the selection of the affected areaa, to be candid they were selected because I thought they were good examples of severe smog and also because I could find interesting material about those sections. Admittedly, more researching could disclose more to write about ... but the article struck me as large enough as is and I had already spent a couple of weeks on it, so I stopped researching. Milton Beychok 21:43, 25 August 2010 (UTC)

Comments after the article was loaded into article namespace

Wikipedia has an article of the same name

This article may contain some very few bits of content from the WP article. Milton Beychok 23:20, 25 August 2010 (UTC)

About recent edits by Daniel

Daniel,thanks much for your latest edits. I must have read through this article a thousand times ... and I still missed those. Milton Beychok 15:44, 26 August 2010 (UTC)

A few comments

Very nice so far.

Should it explictly say that smog can only be prevented; there is no way to break up a significant smog concentration once it is in place. Hayford may, however, remember the name of a science fiction story in which Earth prospered as the galactic equivalent of a fine wine district -- apparently, the rest of the galaxy considered bottled smog a wonderful delicacy. It was impossible to export enough. Howard C. Berkowitz 20:09, 1 September 2010 (UTC)

Policy and Laws generated to combat smog

could like to subpages / articles / sections that discuss

Legal Policy / Laws / gov't action to combat smog.

I just skimmed the article, so maybe this is already in there.

And then a timeline/figure and how we've improved the smog in LA from the 70s and 80s to now. Tom Kelly 18:31, 6 January 2011 (UTC)

Tom, I agree that a section about government actions or laws to mitigate smog would indeed be a good addition to this article. But it would have to be written by an environmental engineer with expertise and experience in dealing with those actions and laws ... in the United States as well as other countries. That would be a very difficult chore and not to be undertaken lightly by someone with no experience in that field. As of this moment, we really don't have any active members that have the needed expertise and experience. Milton Beychok 00:34, 7 January 2011 (UTC)
respectfully disagree on part. You do not need expertise to write a draft. That is what the wiki world is all about - anyone can contribute. If you want to get it approved, you probably need someone to do fact checking, etc. However, if you make it a subpage, I don't know if the subpage needs to get approved along with the main article. Or the draft could just be a 2nd article that is linked from this article. Tom Kelly 17:37, 28 January 2011 (UTC)
And I respectfully disagree with you, Tom. As one who spent about 20 years working in the environmental technology field and had to become acquainted with the multitude of environmental regulations in the United States (both national regulations and the various individual state regulations), I know how very difficult it would be to intelligently discuss those regulations ... as well as the regulations in England, France, Germany, Japan, etc., etc.,etc.
The idea that expertise is not needed and the wiki process will eventually evolve a good article is exactly what is wrong with Wikipedia. It does not always produce a good article. It does take detailed knowledge and direct experience to even draft an article about any technical subject ... and especially so when dealing with the worldwide aspects of environmental regulations.
Tom, you are a medical student. As such, would you trust anyone who has no medical expertise to draft a good article about the details of some intricate brain surgery? Milton Beychok 19:01, 28 January 2011 (UTC)
I am no longer a medical student; however, I do hope that my patients would be motivated to write (or contribute to) a draft on brain surgery if they need to undergo the procedure. You danger on becoming expertpedia (sp?) if you only allow experts to make drafts. I would like to see the citizendium policy on this, because I distinctly remember citizendium was founded on "expert guidance" not "need to be an expert to make a draft, or an edit... 01:34, 6 April 2011 (UTC)
From the front page: "We welcome everyone who has knowledge, broad or narrow, about any subject. Our community is collegial and congenial; everyone writes under his or her real name. Even this, our home page, can be edited by any Citizen. " Tom Kelly 01:37, 6 April 2011 (UTC)

another great article idea related to this one

fine particle pollution - often around freeways from car exhaust

University of Southern California epidemiology research shows that children that live with a few hundred yards of freeways / highways have a much higher incidence of asthma.

fine particle pollution is going to be a very interesting topic to follow as smog was (and still is). Tom Kelly 17:40, 28 January 2011 (UTC)

Fine particle pollution is usually referred to as particulate matter pollution (or PM pollution) and the respirable fraction is denoted as PM2.5, which is very small particulate matter having a size of 2.5 μm or less. Particulate matter pollution is discussed to some extent in the existing Acid rain, Air pollution emissions and Air Quality Index Citizendium articles as well as this Smog article.
Yes, an article on the epidemiology of PM pollution would be of interest. But it should be based on more than just one epidemiology research report.
Tom, just as trivial aside, it would be better if your post headers and proposed articles started with a capital letter (i.e., Another great article idea ... and Fine particle pollution). The same holds true for starting sentences (i.e., Fine particle pollution is going to be a very interesting ...). Milton Beychok 19:38, 28 January 2011 (UTC)
I would hope that the redirect for lower case would go to first letter upper case Lower case automatically in some computer code and it wouldn't matter if your 5th phalange (or better yet the neurons controlling it in the primary motor cortex... they would all go to the same place. Tom Kelly 01:27, 6 April 2011 (UTC)
On further thought, it's likely not the nerves in the prefrontal motor cortex that are lazy, but other frontal lobe neurons that decide when to fire the motor nerve pathways. Tom Kelly 01:57, 6 April 2011 (UTC)