The American Lung Association’s State of the Air 2018 report released today, showing mixed results for the state of Michigan. WKAR’s Katie Cook reports.
Many areas in Michigan had more unhealthy ozone days in the 2018 report than they did in the 2017 report.
The State of the Air report uses the most recent data, in this case from 2014-2016, and 2016 was the second hottest year on record in the US.
Ken Fletcher is Director of Advocacy for the American Lung Association in Michigan.
“2106 was a very hot summer and ozone pollution is caused by the sunlight reacting with the pollution coming from cars and power plants and other sources and creating that ozone smog pollution.”
The inhalation of ozone, or smog, can cause a number of health problems like wheezing, coughing, asthma attacks, and premature death.
Here in Greater Lansing, Ingham County’s ozone grade worsened from a B to a C in the report, and Clinton County’s grade slightly improved but is still only a D.
Fletcher says the planned retirement of coal burning power plants will help the grades improve, as well as continuing to clean up car emissions and seeking more solutions nationally, like the Clean Air Act.
He also says that across the nation, the report found continued improvement in air quality, but that more than four in 10 Americans still live in counties that have unhealthful levels of ozone or particle pollution, where their health is at risk.