San Diego among top regions for ozone pollution, American Lung Association reports

Muriel Hammond
Апреля 26, 2019

Eugene-Springfield came in at No. 19 for short-term particle pollution, Bend-Prineville at No. 22 and Portland-Vancouver-Salem at No. 23. By comparison, almost 134 million people lived in counties with unhealthy air pollution levels in 2014 to 2016, and 125 million people did so in 2013 to 2015.

Another example is that, over the three-year period from 2015 through 2017 that the Lung Association counted in the latest report, Salt Lake County received an "F" grade for an annual average of 21 days of high ozone. Wilmington has been ranked 13th for cleanest year-round particle pollution.

The American Lung Association has just released their yearly "State of the Air" report. The report analyzes particle pollution in two ways: through average annual particle pollution levels and short-term spikes in particle pollution.

Compared to last year, the report says Denver experienced more unhealthy days of high ozone, however Denver saw lower levels of particle pollution throughout the year.

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Bakersfield tops the list for unhealthy particle pollution days, and Los Angeles-Long Beach for unhealthy ozone days. Under President Trump, the Environmental Protection Agency has softened emissions rules for the auto and coal industries, threatening to worsen pollution levels. While people like to blame agriculture for the problem, he said, it's "more of a climate change problem". Ozone attacks the lungs - some people describe ozone pollution as "sunburn for the lungs".

The report also found, "that an increasing number of Americans-more than 4 in 10-lived with unhealthy air quality, placing their health and lives at risk". Dukes, Plymouth, Suffolk, and Worcester counties all received C's and D's, lower grades than past year.

And it can be damaging especially for people living with lung disease. "Specifically in the Pacific Northwest with the increase of wildfires and wildfire smoke exposure that we're having", said Nyssen.

Climate change brings higher temperatures, drought, floods, wildfires and other extreme weather that makes it harder to breathe and makes pollution worse.

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