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New American Lung Association Report Finds 60 Percent of Americans Live in Areas Where Air is Dirty Enough to Endanger Lives
Date:4/29/2009

- 10th Annual State of the Air Report Publishes Local Air Quality Grades Online -

WASHINGTON, April 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The 10th annual American Lung Association State of the Air report released today finds that six out of ten Americans -- 186.1 million people -- live in areas where air pollution levels endanger lives.

State of the Air 2009 acknowledges substantial progress against air pollution in many areas of the country, but finds nearly every major city still burdened by air pollution. Despite America's growing "green" movement, the air in many cities became dirtier. The State of the Air report, found at www.stateoftheair.org, includes a national air quality "report card" that assigns A-F grades to communities across the country. The report also ranks cities and counties most affected by the three most widespread types of pollution (ozone--or smog, annual particle pollution, and 24-hour particle pollution levels) and details trends for 900 counties over the past decade.

"This should be a wakeup call. We know that air pollution is a major threat to human health," said Stephen J. Nolan, American Lung Association National Board Chair. "When 60 percent of Americans are left breathing air dirty enough to send people to the emergency room, to shape how kids' lungs develop, and to kill, air pollution remains a serious problem."

The report finds that air pollution hovers at unhealthy levels in almost every major city, threatening people's ability to breathe and placing lives at risk. Some of the biggest sources of air pollution, including dirty power plants, dirty diesel engines and ocean-going vessels, also worsen global warming.

"The more we learn, the more urgent it becomes for us to take decisi
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SOURCE American Lung Association
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