Climate change is expected to significantly contribute to a decrease in air quality. Respiratory disorders may worsen because of warming-induced increases in smog, ground-level ozone, and particulate air pollution.

Ground-level ozone can damage lung tissue. People with asthma and other chronic lung diseases are particularly susceptible. Ground-level ozone is increased when sunlight and higher temperatures are combined with other pollutants. Ozone causes lung damage and respiratory disorders and is also associated with cardiovascular diseases and cardiac dysrhythmias.

Particulate pollution may also increase because of climate change. Particulate pollution consists of a mixture of small particles and liquid droplets. The particles are small enough to travel deeply into the lungs where they cause a variety of health problems. With longer and warmer seasons the amount of pollen in the air will increase. Incidences of allergy-related illness will rise.

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