Fairfield is the 19th most ozone polluted US county for 2017-2019 according to the American Lung Association’s latest report on the nation’s air quality. All but two Connecticut counties earned an F for the number of high ozone days. High ozone levels cause inflammation in the lungs, decreased lung function, and susceptibility to respiratory infections such as pneumonia even for the young.
|Connecticut counties||Ozone grade|
Over 40% of Americans are living with unhealthy levels of pollution. People of color are three times more likely to be living in an area with polluted air.
The good news is that all reporting Connecticut counties earned passing grades for particle pollution and air quality in all Connecticut counties has improved since 2000-2002.
Populations at risk include children, seniors, people with asthma, COPD, lung cancer, heart disease, or smokers, people living in color, and communities of color. In Fairfield, New Haven, and Hartford counties the largest group at risk is people of color; in the other five Connecticut counties people who have ever smoked are the greatest group at risk.
The full report includes more detail and what we can do to protect ourselves personally, such as avoiding exercise when pollution levels are high and near high traffic areas, and options to improve your community’s environment, such as using less electricity, not burning trash or wood, and advocacy opportunities.