Air Quality Facts

  • #StateoftheAir 2013 shows that air quality improved during 2009-2011 across much of the nation. @LungAssociation
  • Some areas had worse air quality than in the 2012 #StateoftheAir report, showing the need for continued cleanup. @LungAssociation
  • Air pollution hovers at unhealthy levels in almost every major city, placing lives at risk. #stateoftheair @LungAssociation
  • 13 of the 27 most ozone-polluted cities had their lowest levels in 2009-2011. @LungAssociation #StateoftheAir
  • 16 of the 25 cities with the worst annual particle pollution saw their lowest-ever levels in 2009-2011. #stateoftheair @LungAssociation
  • 14 of the 25 cities with the worst short-term particle pollution had more unhealthy days in 2009-2011. #stateoftheair @LungAssociation
  • Four cities appeared on all three lists of categories covered in #StateoftheAir for the cleanest air. @lungassociation
  • @LungAssociation fights for stronger safeguards, cleaner gasoline and vehicles, and reduced power plant emissions. #stateoftheair
  • Breathing ozone irritates the lungs, resulting in something like a bad sunburn within the lungs. #stateoftheair @LungAssociation
  • Breathing in particle pollution can increase the risk of early death, heart attacks, strokes and emergency room visits for people with asthma, cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
  • Particles are smaller than 1/30th the diameter of a human hair. When you inhale them, they are small enough to get past the body’s natural defenses.
  • Ozone and particle pollution are both linked to increased risk of lower birth weight in newborns.
  • Cleaner air between 2000 and 2007 may have added 4 months on to the average person’s life, according to one study.
  • More than 131.8 million people live in counties that received an F for either ozone or particle pollution.
  • Nearly 24.8 million people live in counties that got an F for all three measures: ozone, year-round particle pollution and short-term particle pollution.
  • Do you live near, or work on or near a busy highway? Pollution from the traffic may put you at greater risk of harm.
  • People who work or exercise outside face increased risk from the effects of air pollution.
  • Certain groups are especially vulnerable to the effects of air pollution, such as: infants, older adults and people with lung diseases like asthma.
  • Minorities and lower income groups are often disproportionately affected by air pollution which put them at higher risk for illnesses.
  • Air pollution is a serious health threat. It sends people to the hospital, shapes how kids’ lungs develop, and can even be deadly.
  • Steps you can take to improve air quality will also help fight climate change. Drive less. Don’t burn wood or trash. Use less electricity. Make sure your school system requires clean buses.
  • You can protect your family by checking the air quality forecasts in your community and avoiding exercising or working outdoors when the unhealthy air is expected.
  • Big polluters and some members of Congress are trying to change the Clean Air Act and dismantle 40 years’ of progress. The Lung Association is fighting to keep the law strong to continue to protect public health.
  • Cutting air pollution through the Clean Air Act will prevent at least 230,000 deaths and save $2 trillion annually by 2020.