April 18, 2018

Report: Indiana Air Pollution Hurts Hoosier Health

Article origination IPBS-RJC
stock photo

stock photo

A new national report outlines the impact of pollution in Indiana on public health and finds communities across the state register significant negative impacts.

Indianapolis, South Bend and Madison rank low for communities that experience poor air quality leading to asthma, respiratory and cardiovascular conditions. American Lung Association Senior Vice President Paul Billings says factors like vehicle traffic impact air quality in northern and central Indiana. 

"Down in southern Indiana still we see the role of coal-fired power plants play into unhealthy levels of air pollution," says Billings. 

Overall, the data from 2014-2016 finds more people are living in areas with unhealthy air quality. 

The report says Indianapolis and South Bend rank among the 25 worst areas in the country for short-term particles in the air. 

Billings says measures of particle air pollution includes soot and ozone pollution includes smog.

"So both pollutants are of great concern and both pollutants impact the health of people in Indiana," says Billings. 

The analysis ranks Floyd, Lake, Marion and Lake counties at the bottom for smog. Elkhart and Marion counties were at the bottom for soot.

Billings says Indiana needs to work with the federal government to improve air quality. 

Omitted counties from the map do not have monitors.

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