Air pollution has had a profound impact on my health making me a staunch supporter of the Clean Air Act and the healthy air protections it provides. I lived outside the congested Capital Beltway in Maryland for nearly 50 years. Yet, it wasn’t until I moved to Connecticut that I realized how simply breathing cleaner air could drastically improve my quality of life.
By the time I had moved to Connecticut, I had been living with COPD for the better part of two decades. It’s a progressively worsening disease that makes it increasingly difficult to breathe as years go by. From day one living in Connecticut, my breathing problems drastically improved. I was even able to significantly reduce the amount of medication I was taking and breathing became much easier. Even my skin looked and felt better!
I know not everyone has the ability to move to enjoy the benefits of healthy air. Jobs and family obligations relegate some to cope with life in communities where toxic air pollution comprises their health and daily quality of life.
I’ve also learned that healthy air can’t be taken for granted. Plans to build a factory near my home could once again mean an uncertain future for my respiratory health.
I believe everyone deserves the right to breathe healthy air regardless of where they live.
First published: January 7, 2019