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Apr 29 2019

Houston Air Quality is Among the Worst in the Nation

Despite improvements, Houston once again made the top 10 list for most polluted cities in the country for ozone, according to the new “State of the Air” report. The “State of the Air” is a report card on ozone pollution (smog) and particle pollution (soot) that is so small that it can lodge deep in the lungs.

Where Houston Ranks

Houston ranked 9 for ozone pollution. The ranking is based on a higher average of unhealthy air days from 2015 to 2017. This is up two places from last year’s report. For particle pollution, it ranked 17, a fall from the previous ranking of 15.

Why This Matters

According to the report, a big contributor to air quality is climate change as warmer temperatures stimulate the reactions in the atmosphere that cause ozone to form. Both ozone and particle pollution are dangerous to public health. They can increase the risk of premature death and other serious health effects such as lung cancer, asthma attacks, cardiovascular damage, and developmental and reproductive harm.

Air Quality Has Been Worse

Although it still ranked fairly high, the air quality has improved. The worst period on record for ozone in Houston was from 1997 to 1999 when there was a weighted average of 110 days of unhealthy air. This year average of 26.7 days. While Houston no longer tops the list for the most polluted the progress that helped improve air quality back in the late 1990s has stalled.

More Can Be Done

The latest numbers demonstrate air pollution is getting better but more needs to be done. There may still be some initiatives in place to help improve air quality, but the momentum has declined. Fortunately, there are a variety of things that individuals and businesses can do to help remedy this issue. Contact us to find out how you can help improve air quality.  

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Call AL Law Group (281) 852-8064

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