What's Going On Here?
Household products like nail varnish, air freshener and detergents could pollute just as much—if not MORE—than vehicles.
What Does This Mean?
We’re talking about VOCs. As some chemistry buffs may already know, this is not some new millennial slang, but stands for Volatile Organic Compounds. VOCs have a high vapour pressure at room temperature, meaning they release “off-gas” in our homes; basically products that “coat” things will contain VOCs. The list of products containing VOCs is extensive; from cosmetics to upholstery to paints to perfumes to carpets, so it is very likely that your lungs are familiar with VOCs, even if you aren’t.
Volatile = easily evaporates at normal temperatures
Organic compound = any chemical compound that contains carbon
New research published in Science shows that these volatile chemical products now contribute one-half of emitted VOCs in 33 industrialised cities (that were tested) with vehicles making up the other half.