California gets No.1 ranking for most polluted state… again
- Author: Santos West Apr 21, 2017,
Apr 21, 2017, 3:16
The number of people exposed to unhealthy levels of air pollution declined by more than 40 million, from 166 million in 2012-2014 to 125 million in 2013-2015, according to the report released early Wednesday.
Soaring air pollution levels in the state caused Bakersfield to be named the most polluted city in the republic.
Wildfires in Reno, Nevada, during the period included in the report landed that city on the top 10 list for short-term particle pollution and two other cities on the list - Logan, Utah and Fairbanks, Alaska - rely heavily on wood burning devices for heat.
Year-round fine particle pollution - which refers to emissions from coal-powered plants, diesel engines and other sources - either improved or stayed the same as last year's report.
Kewaunee County received a C for ozone, as compared to an F in the 2016 report.
Despite maintaining the same grade as the previous year, particulate pollution in Marin was slightly worse in this year's report.
Boucher said New Hampshire and ME are at a bit of a disadvantage geographically because air currents and weather patterns can carry pollution from areas with heavy industry and coal-burning power plants.
Pollutants can cause severe asthma attacks, particularly in vulnerable children.
Kent County and Sussex County received A's for their measure of daily fine particle pollution.
Californias most populous metro area, Los Angeles, continues to improve, posting its lowest number of unhealthy days for ozone pollution and lowest levels of year-round particle pollution.
"As a result, Americans' lung health is far better protected today than it was before the Clean Air Act health protections began almost five decades ago".
"The Clean Air Act - and the various regulations that have been the result of the Clean Air Act - have done a tremendous amount of good in terms of cleaning up our air quality and, as a result, making our public health better", Mullally said.
Brown said clean-air advocates derisively refer to that bill as the "Smoggy Skies Act".
Mirroring the national picture, most of California saw a drop in ozone, also called smog, which the American Lung Association credited to tighter state and federal environmental laws.
Several made the list of cleanest for short-term particle pollution: Atlanta/Athens/Sandy Springs, Augusta/Richmond County; Brunswick; Columbus; Rome/Summerville; Savannah/Hinesville/ Statesboro; and Valdosta. According to the 2017 report, Hartford and Litchfield counties had the fewest days when short-term particle pollution has reached unhealthy levels in 2013-2015, compared to other CT counties.
The five cities with the highest year-round particle pollution levels are all in California: Bakersfield; Visalia-Porterville-Hanford; Fresno-Madera; San Jose-San Francisco-Oakland; and Los Angeles-Long Beach.
The report reveals El Centro in Imperial County recorded its lowest number ever for the number of unhealthy days for ozone pollution. "The nation must continue to reduce emissions that worsen climate".
The improvements in the region's air quality is noteworthy when viewed over the past 16 years. "They've done more than any other state to counteract air pollution", American Lung Association representative Paul Billings said.