Before you do anything else, find out if you live in an air pollution hotspot?

Air Pollution



Wildfire smoke is eroding decades of air quality improvements, study finds

By Joshua Partlow 09/20/23
In more than a half century since the Clean Air Act was enacted, there have been dramatic improvements in air quality in the United States, as regulations demanding less-polluting cars and factories helped lift cities…
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Wildfire Smoke Linked to Asthma Attack Spikes in the US

By Cailley LaPara 08/24/23
Smoke from Canadian wildfires that blanketed US cities this spring and summer were linked to spikes in emergency department visits for asthma in New York and other regions of the .....
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Air Pollution Can Increase Risk Of Dementia, Study Suggests

By Molly Bohannon 08/14/23
People living in parts of the United States with high levels of air pollution—especially in areas where pollution stems from agriculture and wildfires—have a greater risk of developing dementia, a study released Monday found, the…
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Study warns of link between air pollution, antibiotic-resistant pathogens

By Kelsey Ables 08/09/23
Worsening air pollution and increased resistance to antibiotics are two of the world’s most urgent public health concerns, contributing to millions of premature deaths per year — and a new study suggests they might be…
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Air pollution

Air pollution emissions have declined in the last two decades, resulting in better air quality. Despite this improvement, air pollution remains the largest environmental health risk in Europe. Exposure to fine particulate matter and nitrogen…
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ER visits for heart problems plummeted after Pittsburgh coal processor shut down

By Kristina Marusic 08/07/23
The closure of one of Pittsburgh’s largest coal-processing plants in 2016 led to a lasting reduction in hazardous air pollution and a decrease in heart-related hospital visits, according to a new study.
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EPA rejects Suncor’s air-pollution permit for second time, demands Colorado regulators make changes

By Noelle Phillips 08/01/23
In a rare move, the Environmental Protection Agency announced Tuesday that it objects to one of Suncor Energy’s new air-quality permits and sent it back to Colorado environmental regulators to make changes that would further…
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Environmental Groups File Notice of Appeal as Fight to Keep Virginia in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative Continues

By lowkell 08/01/23
Two months after Virginia’s Air Pollution Control Board voted to remove the state from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), environmental groups are working to stop this from happening.
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Virginians Will Pay the Costs of Gov Youngkin’s Misguided Efforts to Exit the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative

By Mandy Warner 07/31/23
Today, Governor Glenn Youngkin proceeded with his efforts through executive order to remove Virginia from the 12-state program to cap carbon pollution known as the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, or RGGI, by approving the Virginia…
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Electric trucks could reduce air pollution, improve health

By EHN Staff 07/31/23
The Yale Climate Connections team writes about environmental justice advocates who are calling for a zero-emission freight transportation system.
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Pollution from fossil fuel combustion deadlier than previously thought

A new study found that fine particulate pollution generated by the burning of fossil fuels was responsible for one in five early deaths worldwide in 2018—far more than previously thought. Harvard T.H. Chan School of…
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Signature Biden Program Won’t Fix Racial Gap in Air Quality, Study Suggests

By Delger Erdenesanaa 07/20/23
A new analysis has found that the White House’s signature environmental justice program may not shrink racial disparities in who breathes the most polluted air, in part because of efforts to ensure that it could…
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Wildfire Smoke

Wildfire smoke is a mix of gases and fine particles from burning vegetation, building materials, and other materials. Wildfire smoke can make anyone sick. Even someone who is healthy can get sick if there is…

Seasonal allergies: pollen and mold

About one-quarter of adults (26%) and 19% of children in the U.S. suffer from seasonal allergies, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Seasonal allergies, such as “hay fever,” are allergic reactions caused…

Air pollution

Air pollution is contamination of the indoor or outdoor environment by any chemical, physical or biological agent that modifies the natural characteristics of the atmosphere.

The Most Detailed Map of Cancer-Causing Industrial Air Pollution in the U.S.

ProPublica’s analysis of five years of modeled EPA data identified more than 1,000 toxic hot spots across the country and found that an estimated 250,000 people living in them may be exposed to levels of…

Raising Awareness of the Health Impacts of Coal Plant Pollution

In 2000, 2004 and again in 2010, the Clean Air Task Force issued studies based on a methodology and model created by Abt Associates, U.S EPA’s own health benefits consultant, based on peer-reviewed, published studies…

What is Wildfire Smoke and Can it Make Me Sick?

Wildfire smoke is a mix of gases and fine particles from burning vegetation, building materials, and other materials. Wildfire smoke can make anyone sick. Even someone who is healthy can get sick if there is…

Planting healthy air: Trees, particulate matter pollution and extreme heat

This study from the Nature Conservancy reviews the positive cooling effects of urban trees planting on hot city climates and the quality of their air.

Climate change is making people sick: A U.S. medical report

From rising levels of air pollution to increased water contamination and a widening range for disease-carrying mosquitoes, climate change is making people sick, a coalition of 11 US medical groups said Wednesday.


People understand air pollution if not climate change

By Abe Novick   07/17/23  
In any effort to get people to change their behavior, words and phrases matter. Attaching a motivating name to an issue can be the clarion call to action. This brings me to the editorial, “It’s…
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US air quality today: AQI maps show Chicago, Detroit among cities impacted by wildfire smoke

By Gabe Hauari   07/17/23  
Poor air quality has returned in large portions of the country and is expected to linger through the early portion of the week, according to the National Weather Service. Smoke from Canadian wildfires is projected…
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It’s Time to Include Smoke in Weather Forecasts

By Neel Dhanesha   07/17/23  
Canadian wildfire smoke is returning to the United States this week, triggering air quality alerts around the country. But when I open up my weather app and check the weather conditions in some of the…
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Fossil fuel workers are dying inhaling gases – despite US warnings to big oil

By Sara Sneath   07/13/23  
After multiple worker fatalities, the US government warned manual gauging was dangerous. The oil industry seems to have not taken note, activists say...
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Air pollution: The invisible health threat

By Maria Neira   07/12/23  
Each day, as we take a breath, an invisible storm of particles and molecules infiltrates our bodies, posing a threat not only to our lungs. Yet, have you ever truly pondered the significance of clean…
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How Biden’s environmental justice dilemma is playing out in Port Arthur

By James Osborne   07/09/23  
John Beard spent almost 40 years working in the refineries and petrochemical plants that surround his home in Port Arthur. But after an accident at the Valero refinery in Port Arthur in 2007 released large…
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Climate Change Causing Dangerous NYC Air Quality (Again)

This morning, the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation issued an air quality alert for the NYC Metro area – not caused by Canadian wildfires or Fourth of July fireworks, but by pollution from power plants…
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Gas industry knew about indoor pollution from stoves 50 years ago, investigation reveals

By Lottie Limb   07/03/23  
The American Gas Association was aware about health concerns in the early 1970s, rediscovered documents show. The gas industry has known that its stoves could be harmful to human health for more than 50 years,…
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Long Island air quality: Unhealthy smoke conditions could return on Thursday

By Nicholas Spangler   06/27/23  
Gov. Kathy Hochul on Tuesday warned that smoke rolling down from Canadian wildfires could bring unhealthy air conditions to much of the state by Thursday, and the state’s top environmental official said that the haze…
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A new satellite could help clean up the air in America’s most polluted neighborhoods

By Seyma Bayram and Rebecca Hersher   06/19/23  
David Jones dusts his house in the Curtis Bay neighborhood of Baltimore almost daily. He rarely opens his windows, even when the weather is beautiful, because the outdoor air makes him feel sick.
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The new war on bad air

By Emily Anthes   06/17/23  
In January 1912, in the depths of a New York City winter, an unusual new apartment complex opened on the Upper East Side.The East River Homes were designed to help poor families fend off tuberculosis,…
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Railroad industry sues to block new locomotive pollution rules in California

By Adam Beam and Josh Funk   06/17/23  
The railroad industry on Friday sued to block new environmental rules in California, arguing they would force the premature retirement of about 25,000 diesel-powered locomotives across the country long before their zero-emission counterparts are ready…
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Study Compares Gas Stove Pollution to Second-Hand Smoke

By Hiroko Tabuchi   06/17/23  
Cooking on a gas stove can emit a higher level of carcinogenic benzene than what’s seen in second-hand cigarette smoke, with the pollution spreading throughout the home and lingering long after the stove is switched…
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Aerosols: Small Particles with Big Climate Effects

By Karin Kirk   06/12/23  
We often think of aerosols as spray paint, insect repellant, or similar substances sprayed from a can. But aerosols are actually small particles or droplets that float in the air, and it turns out these…
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Aerosols: Small Particles with Big Climate Effects

By Karin Kirk   06/12/23  
We often think of aerosols as spray paint, insect repellant, or similar substances sprayed from a can. But aerosols are actually small particles or droplets that float in the air, and it turns out these…
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‘The fire equivalent of an ice age’: Humanity enters a new era of fire

By Shannon Osaka, Michael E. Miller and Beatriz Ríos   06/10/23  
When the sky over New York City turned a thick, silty orange on Wednesday, 8 million residents woke up in a new era. Until this week, the East Coast had remained cocooned, thousands of miles…
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How Canada’s wildfires and air quality warnings are connected to climate change

By Ginger Zee and others   06/08/23  
Wildfires burning in Canada have prompted hazardous air pollution conditions in the U.S. this week, as smoke moves South and lingers over much of the Northeast.
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The toll of smoke

By Somini Sengupta   06/08/23  
New York City used to have deadly smog. Pittsburgh had bad air. Also Los Angeles. It got a lot better. Until it didn’t. Wildfire smoke has reversed the gains this country made in cleaning up…
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Air quality hits hazardous levels Wednesday from Canadian wildfire smoke

By Andrew Jeong, Victoria Bisset and Others   06/07/23  
Smoke and haze from the wildfires ravaging Canadian forests probably will continue to blanket buildings and residents in the Northeast, the Ohio Valley and the Mid-Atlantic. Air quality alerts remain in effect in major cities…
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Wildfire Masking Is Just Different

By Katherine J. Wu   06/07/23  
Late last night, New Yorkers were served a public-health recommendation with a huge helping of déjà vu: “If you are an older adult or have heart or breathing problems and need to be outside,” city…
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N95 Masks Helped Protect Against the Coronavirus. They Also Work Against Wildfire Smoke

By Claire Moses   06/07/23  
As smoke from wildfires in Canada drifts over large parts of the United States, the best thing to do to prevent breathing in pollutants on Wednesday is to stay indoors. For many people, of course,…
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Wildfire Smoke Smoky Air Disrupts Life in the Northeast

By Liam Stack and Others   06/07/23  
A plume of Canadian wildfire smoke rapidly darkened the skies over New York City and around the Northeast on Wednesday, making the air dangerous to breathe and disrupting life across the region.
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As Smoke Darkens the Sky, the Future Becomes Clear

By David Wallace-Wells   06/07/23  
My father, who died of lung cancer, used to say that as soon as people inhaled their first cigarette, they immediately knew, if they weren’t in denial, that they were harming themselves. I felt the…
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Trying to Breathe in a City of Smoke

By Carolyn Kormann   06/07/23  
hen the smoke comes, you notice it in your body before you see it in the air. On Monday evening, I went for a run and then felt queasy and lethargic. Only on Tuesday did…
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We Can See Clearly Now

By Bill MCKibben   06/07/23  
I live in Vermont, where the scent of woodsmoke on a late fall afternoon is an iconic smell. It’s not like that here today—it’s more like sitting on the side of the campfire where the…
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Climate Coach from The Washington Post

By Michael J. Coren   05/18/23  
Every day, we burn about half a million gallons of leaded gasoline in the United States.
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There’s no escape from wildfire smoke

By David Wallace-Wells   05/17/23  
In Western Canada, fire season comes early by American standards — beginning, usually, right around now. In Alberta, by today’s date, only about 1,000 acres have burned in recent years. This season so far, the…
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EPA says pollution limits proposed for U.S. coal, gas power plants reflect climate crisis ‘urgency’

By Matthew Daly   05/11/23  
The Biden administration proposed new limits Thursday on greenhouse gas emissions from coal- and gas-fired power plants, its most ambitious effort yet to roll back planet-warming pollution from the nation’s second-largest contributor to climate change.
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Where air pollution is improving — and where it’s worsening

By Alex Fitzpatrick and Kavya Beheraj   04/27/23  
Air quality, as measured by fine particle pollution, improved across much of the country between 2015 and 2021, though it worsened across several Western states and Florida.
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Climate Change Is Rolling Back American Progress on Air Pollution

By Ciara Nugent   04/20/23  
Climate change is transforming air pollution in the U.S., driving an increase in hazardous high-pollution days in Western states., even as environmental regulations help to clean up traditional sources of contaminants nationally. That’s the picture…
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Biden Administration to Curb Toxic Pollutants From Chemical Plants

By Coral Davenport and Lisa Friedman   04/07/23  
The rule would chiefly affect plants along the Gulf Coast, the Ohio River Valley and in West Virginia....
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Congressional Democrats call on EPA to tighten proposed soot standards

By Zack Budryk   03/28/23  
More than 80 congressional Democrats, led by Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), urged the Biden administration to strengthen proposed rules on soot pollution in a letter Tuesday.
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Air pollution from California wildfires worsened skin conditions

By Cara Murez   03/20/23  
Wildfires are known to have a lot of negative impacts on the environment and the health of the people who live through them.
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Biden will let California lead on electric trucks, despite industry protest

By Anna Phillips   03/20/23  
The EPA plans to grant California a waiver that will allow the state to phase out diesel-powered trucks, helping communities burdened by truck pollution....
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Inside the East Palestine Disaster: A Wake Up Call To Ban Toxic Vinyl Chloride & Go Beyond Plastics

Five of the train cars were carrying vinyl chloride, a known human carcinogen that is used to create polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plastic. The railroad and state officials drained this toxic chemical into a ditch and…
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Despite Rules, New Mexico Oil and Gas Producers Keep Polluting

By Jerry Redfern   03/17/23  
Driving around the Permian Basin in early February, it was impossible to miss. New Mexico has increased its oil production tenfold since 2010 and was the first major oil-producing state to surpass its pre-pandemic output…
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EPA tells dozens of states to clean up their smokestacks

By Coral Davenport   03/15/23  
The Biden administration on Wednesday finalized a rule forcing factories and power plants in 23 Western and Midwestern states to sharply cut smog-causing pollution that is released from their smokestacks and fouls the air in…
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Only 13 countries and territories had ‘healthy’ air quality in 2022

By Rachel Ramirez   03/14/23  
Only 13 of the world’s countries and territories had “healthy” air quality last year, according to a new report, as air pollution surged to alarming levels in 2022. The report by IQAir, a company that…
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Air pollution ‘speeds up osteoporosis’ in postmenopausal women

By Gary Fuller   03/10/23  
US study finds bone loss occurs twice as fast among women living in areas with higher air pollution
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Gas stoves pose health risks. Are gas furnaces and other appliances safe to use?

By Sarah Wesseler   03/09/23  
Poor air quality is a long-standing problem in Los Angeles, where the first major outbreak of smog during World War II was so intense that some residents thought the city had been attacked by chemical…
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Revealed: the 10 worst places to live in US for air pollution

By Erin McCormick   03/08/23  
The worst 10 hotspots for fine particle air pollution in the US have been revealed by The Guardian in an analysis using cutting-edge modelling. America’s top spot is not a traffic-clogged metropolis or renowned heavy…
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Nearly Nowhere On Earth Safe From Air Pollution, Study Finds

By Jamie Hailstone   03/07/23  
More than 99% of the world’s population are being exposed to unhealthy levels of air pollution, according to a new study.
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Asthma: How air pollutants may increase attacks for children in urban areas

By Deep Shukla   02/25/23  
Viral respiratory infections are the most common cause of asthma attacks, but nonviral factors such as air pollutants are also associated with the flare-up of asthma symptoms. A recent studyTrusted Source published in the journal…
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Current air pollution standards tied to higher heart risks

Long-term exposure to air pollution is tied to an increased risk of having a heart attack or dying from heart disease — with the greatest harms impacting under-resourced communities, new Kaiser Permanente research shows.
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The plastic train wreck should be a wake-up call

Thanks to a mountain of deadlines a mile high, I haven't yet been able to focus as much attention on the East Palestine train derailment as I'd like, but two things were very clear to…
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Air Pollution More Dangerous Than Previously Understood: Here Are The Biggest Health Risks And How To Reduce It

By Arianna Johnson   02/16/23  
A number of recent studies have drawn stronger connections between air pollution and serious health problems than previously understood, but there are several methods experts recommend individuals and countries take to reduce air pollution. Los…
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Mom’s exposure to air pollution, even before pregnancy, may raise baby’s heart defect risk

By Laura Williamson   02/14/23  
Maternal exposure to air pollution may raise the risk for heart defects in an unborn child, according to new research from China that suggests the risks are just as high in the three months prior…
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It doesn’t take that many electric cars to improve public health

By Umair Irfan   02/09/23  
During his State of the Union address this week, President Joe Biden highlighted tax credits for EVs as a key plank in his strategy to corral climate change. Transportation is the largest source of greenhouse…
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Common kinds of air pollution led to changes in teens’ blood pressure, study says

By Jen Christensen   02/08/23  
Scientists know that air pollution can make it difficult to breathe and may ultimately cause serious health problems like cancer, but a new study shows that it might also have a negative impact on teens’…
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In polluted cities, reducing air pollution could lower cancer rates as much as eliminating smoking would

By Kristina Marusic   02/03/23  
Exposure to air pollution has a significant impact on rates of cancers typically associated with smoking, according to a recent study.
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