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Minnesota's Grades Tumble In Latest American Lung Association 'State of the Air Report'
Date:4/29/2009

ST. PAUL, Minn., April 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Minnesota, which has long scored well in the American Lung Association's annual State of the Air Report, earning mostly solid "A" and "B" grades for air quality in the 16 counties with enough data to be scored, fared much more poorly in this year's report. The report uses the EPA's tougher new standards for ozone pollution, enacted last year.

Three counties, Anoka, Mille Lacs and Wright, each earned "D" grades for ozone pollution. Stearns County was given a "C" grade for particulate pollution. Last year, Ramsey County earned the state's sole "C" grade, for particulate pollution.

The biggest change in scores occurred in Anoka County, which fell from an "A" to a "D" for ozone pollution.

"Our single largest source of air pollution is vehicle exhaust, and we all know how the number of vehicles on our roads -- often stuck in traffic -- is directly linked to the number of 'air alerts' in Minnesota," said Bob Moffitt, communications director for the American Lung Association in Minnesota. "The report should be our 'wake up call' to further embrace greener and cleaner fuels and vehicles that are already available, such as E85, biodiesel and hybrid-electric vehicles. We also need to optimize conservation and the use of less polluting options such as mass transit, car pooling and bicycle commuting whenever practical."

The American Lung Association in Minnesota has tips on reducing air pollution on its CleanAirChoice.org website, to see a copy of the full State of the Air Report, go to lungmn.org.


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SOURCE American Lung Association of Minnesota
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