Salt Lake City, UT = 7th Worst Air Quality in USA, Says American Lung Association

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Smog Lake City, UT. photo: Scott G. Winterton/Deseret News
Smog Lake City, UT. photo: Scott G. Winterton/Deseret News

Utah has a major problem with air quality.  

Salt Lake City was just ranked the 7th worst air quality in the USA for short-term particle pollution by the American Lung Association.  

Utah as a state received a C for air quality.

“The fact that we rank poorly on particulate pollution as well as ozone indicates this is a year-round problem; it isn’t just wintertime inversions.” – Brian Moench, president of Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment

Utah delivers world class skiing, snowboarding, hiking, climbing, kayaking, river rafting, mountaineering, horseback riding, and more all in disgusting air quality that is potentially seriously damaging your body…

Looking down into the Salt Lake Valley from Snowbird ski resort, UT. Yuck. photo: powder
Looking down into the Salt Lake Valley from Snowbird ski resort, UT. Yuck. photo: powder

UTAH’s AIR QUALITY:

  • Salt Lake County received an F for both ozone and particle pollution
  • Utah averaged an F for ozone and a D for particle pollution
  • Salt Lake City metro area (includes Provo & Orem) ranked 7th worst city for short-term particle pollution
  • Logan metro area ranked 8th worst city for short-term particle pollution
  • Only one Utah county received an A for particle pollution:  Washington County, BUT Washington County got an F for its ozone levels…
  • Besides Washington County, no other Utah area received an grade above a C for particle pollution
  • Uintah & Duchense counties both received F’s for ozone pollution
  • Uintah County ranked 13th in the USA’s worst ozone pollution
  • Uintah County ozone levels exceeded the federal standard 83 times from 2012-2014 and received an F
  • Dechense County ozone levels exceeded the federal standard 52 times from 2012-2014 and received an F
  • Salt Lake County ozone levels exceeded the federal standard 52 times from 2012-2014 and received an F
Provo often has worse air quality than SLC. photo: mark johnston/daily herald
Provo often has worse air quality than SLC. photo: mark johnston/daily herald

PARTICLE POLLUTION =

  • “Particle pollution can also cause early death and heart attacks, strokes and emergency room visits for people with asthma, cardiovascular disease and diabetes.” – American Lung Association
  • “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.” – American Lung Association
  • “Breathing in particle pollution can increase the risk of lung cancer, according to the World Health Organization.” – American Lung Association
Smog Lake City, UT. photo: Steve Griffin | The Salt Lake Tribune
Smog Lake City, UT. photo: Steve Griffin | The Salt Lake Tribune

OZONE POLLUTION=

  • “Breathing ozone irritates the lungs, resulting in something like a bad sunburn within the lungs.” – American Lung Association
  • “Ozone and particle pollution are both linked to increased risk of lower birth weight in newborns.” – American Lung Association

Seen as Nature Lovers’ Paradise, Utah Struggles With Air Quality | by The New York Times


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