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147 Million Americans Breath Unhealthy, Polluted Air. Los Angeles Is Worse Off

The American Lung Association (ALA) released Wednesday its annual pollution rankings. The so called "State of Air 2014" report suggests Los Angeles is the worst place to live if you plans on living a long, healthy life. As the number of particles in the air drop and ozone pollution rises, it's also being suggested that that changing climate will make it harder to protect human health, no matter what we do to make our cars better.
147 Million Americans Breath Unhealthy, Polluted Air. Los Angeles Is Worse Off 1 photo
The findings on dangerous air particles are positive, suggesting that most areas in America are continuing to become cleaner. Most alarmingly, however, 147 million people, which is half the entire population, still live in counties that have unhealthy levels of either ozone or particle pollution, though that number has dropped from the 2013 report.

"We are happy to report continued reduction of year-round particle pollution across the nation, thanks to cleaner diesel fleets and cleaner power plants," said Harold Wimmer, National President and CEO of the American Lung Association.

According to the organization, special measures need to be taken there, especially with specific groups that are more susceptible to air pollution: infants, children, older adults, anyone with lung diseases like asthma, people with heart disease or diabetes.

"This improvement represents only a partial victory. We know that warmer temperatures increase risk for ozone pollution, so climate change sets the stage for tougher challenges to protect human health. We must meet these challenges head on to protect the health of millions of Americans living with asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. All of us –everyone in every family—have the right to healthy air," added Wimmer.

The ALA's map of the US has some black spots. 22 of the 25 most ozone-polluted cities in the 2014 report had more bad days than in the previous year's report.

At the top of the list is Los Angeles, which remains the metropolitan area with the worst ozone pollution, a ranking it has held in all but one of the 15 ever made.

press release

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