Air Quality

Air Quality

 99% of Utahns recently said they'd be willing to do something to reduce air pollution.

We don't know who the other 1% are, but frankly, they scare us. But you cared enough to visit this site, so congrats! Maybe you're not sure if anything you do will make a real difference. That couldn't be further from the truth. Lots of people doing lots of small things make a huge difference. Join Utahns now who've already committed to taking action, and let's clear the air together, visit www.cleartheairutah.org.

For most of the year, Utah's air quality is among the best in the nation, but for a few weeks in the summer and the winter our weather patterns lead to poor air conditions. Air quality impacts the health of people living in Utah. Breathing, exercising in and raising children in poor air quality conditions has long term effects on the health of our population, as well as short term effects on those who already struggle with asthma or respiratory diseases. Air quality also impacts Utahns' ability to enjoy their natural surroundings or spend time recreating outdoors.

In the late 1990s, when Envision Utah did its first large visioning effort, key areas of the state were not meeting national air quality standards, and pollution was projected to get even worse. A vision was developed and strategies were put in place. Because of our geography, we will always have significant air quality challenges, but even as we've grown our overall population, pollution across all inventoried pollutants has decreased by nearly half.

How have we accomplished this? Newer cars have cleaner emissions, and we've reduced the emissions from industrial and mining sources so that they are only a small fraction of our total pollution. Importantly, we've also reduced how much we drive by taking public transportation, walking, bicycling, car-pooling, staying home, and driving shorter distances.

We still have more to do, especially as we add another 2.5 million people by 2050. As we grow, each of us will need to pollute less if we are to have acceptable air quality. We need to work together to find solutions, and each of us needs to do our part.

 

What Causes Our Air Pollution?

Sources of air pollution can be divided into three categories:

  1. 1. Mobile sources like automobiles and trucks. This is the largest source of pollution.
  2. 2. Area sources like homes and businesses.
  3. 3. Industry sources like power plants and manufacturing. This is the smallest source of pollution.

Want to learn more? Visit the Let's Clear the Air website.

What Can You Do to Reduce Your Emissions?

In a recent survey, 99% of Utahns say they will change their behavior to improve our air quality and keep us healthy. Learn what you can do here

Give Your Input

Have an idea about how to improve our air quality? Let us know. We've created an online forum where you can share your ideas and have an online discussion with us and other members of the public. Click here to access the forum.

 Utahns in Action

Click here for more information on the Clean Air Action Team.
Click here for research and other resources on air quality issues.

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