INDIANAPOLIS — The quality of the air you breathe varies depending on where you live in Indiana.
A new report called the State of the Air from the American Lung Association, says 140 million Americans live in counties with unhealthy levels of ozone or particle pollution from 2015 to 2017. It says Marion, Porter, and St. Joseph counties are among the Indiana counties with the worst air pollution.
Paul Billings with the ALA said the high air pollution in Porter and St. Joseph counties isn’t exactly their fault.
“Communities that are down wind for city’s like Chicago have much higher ozone pollution levels,” Billings said. “This is because the pollutants are emitted in the Chicago area but they cook in those down wind communities.”
Clark County in southern Indiana was an enigma. It got an “F” grade for ozone pollution, but got an “A” for particulate matter pollution.
According to AirNow.gov, ozone pollution is made up the exhaust from cars or discharge from coal fired power plants. Particulate matter pollution is made up of solid particles in the air like dust, dirt, soot, or smoke.
“The public needs to get involved and stand up and say ‘we need cleaner air, it’s import for our health and the health of our families’,” Billings added. “They need to say no to these efforts to roll back clean are safe guards.
The counties with the best air to breathe in the state, according to the report, are Hendricks, Johnson and Madison counties with Bartholomew, Dubois, and Hamilton also getting good readings.
(PHOTO: Universal Images Group/Getty Images)