American Lung Association's 2007 Air Quality Report


If you live in the US, you may recall seeing a previous year's American Lung Association air quality report. The 2007 version is out; and you can see the whole of it at this link. You'll find a clickable US state map, [as pictured], as well as several other ranked geographical indexes. As usual, the US print media has focused on the "worst" cities. Let's take a deep breath and give a TreeHugger cheer, instead, to those US metro areas ranked as having the cleanest of the lot. (If you can't wait to give a holler, take a quick look below the fold for those cities with lowest particulate levels.) Truthfully, a serious lifestyle choice lies before us. Under the topic "Ways to Clean Up Our Air" the ALA report states:- "Old coal-fired power plants are among the biggest industrial polluters, especially in the eastern half of the United States...An analysis released in 2004 attributed 24,000 premature deaths each year to power plant pollution. In addition, the research estimates that over 550,000 asthma attacks, 38,000 heart attacks and 12,000 hospital admissions are caused annually by power plant pollution." So what do we do, move to the clean cities listed? Or do we fight, instead, for a more stable future climate? For lowered mercury emissions? For a reduced asthma risk? Top 25 Cleanest U.S. Cities for Long-term Particle Pollution (Annual PM2.5)1
2007 Rank2 Metropolitan Statistical Area
1 Cheyenne, WY
2 Santa Fe-Espanola, NM
3 Honolulu, HI
4 Great Falls, MT
5 Farmington, NM
6 Flagstaff, AZ
6 Tucson, AZ
8 Anchorage, AK
8 Bismarck, ND
10 Albuquerque, NM
11 Salinas, CA
12 Pueblo, CO
13 Fort Collins-Loveland, CO
14 Rapid City, SD
14 Redding, CA
16 Duluth, MN-WI
16 Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ
16 Pocatello, ID
19 Fargo-Wahpeton, ND-MN
19 Midland-Odessa, TX
21 Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Miami Beach, FL
22 Billings, MT
23 Colorado Springs, CO
23 San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles, CA
25 Reno-Sparks-Fernley, NV
25 Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville, FL