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Air quality significantly improves across Northeast Ohio

Take a deep breath of fresh air!
Credit: WTOL

OHIO, USA — According to the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency’s (NOACA) latest Air Quality Trends Report, air quality has improved significantly in Northeast Ohio in recent years!

Both Cuyahoga and Lorain Counties have been upgraded from “nonattainment” to “maintenance” status for fine particulate matter effective April 12, 2019. This is a significant improvement. 

What this means is that before April 12, 2019, Cuyahoga and Lorain Counties did not meet the air quality standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency. In this case, for fine particulate matter (such as smoke and haze from power plants, industries and automobiles). The counties then needed to submit a plan which outlined specific strategies they will use to get areas back into “attainment.”

Portage and Summit Counties, remain in marginal “nonattainment” for ground-level ozone (smog). Lake County remains in “nonattainment” for sulfur dioxide (a waste gas produced by burning coal and oil and by many industrial processes).

Here are steps you and I can take to continue to improve the air quality in Northeast Ohio:

Get out of the car:

  • Walk, bike, use public transportation or drive fuel-efficient vehicles.
  • Combine errands to reduce fuel use and save time.
  • Avoid idling your vehicle excessively. Turn off the key and be idle-free!
  • Keep your car, boat and other vehicles properly tuned.

Aside from what you reducing your carbon footprint in using a vehicle, you can:

  • Avoid using leaf blowers and other dust-producing equipment.
  • Reduce energy consumption by turning off your lights and appliances when not in use.
  • Avoid opening burning. Smoke from burning leaves, brush, other vegetation and backyard trash contains a number of hazardous air pollutants.

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