Air Quality Awareness Week Offers Up Tips for Cleaner Air - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Air Quality Awareness Week Offers Up Tips for Cleaner Air

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From Washoe County Health District:

National Air Quality Awareness Week, April 29 - May 3, is a good time for area residents to reflect upon the importance of one of the natural resources we all depend upon and share: clean air. Local air quality affects how we live and breathe. It's vital to good health and to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Like the weather, it can change from day to day or even hour to hour. The Washoe County Health District Air Quality Management Division (AQMD) urges everyone, especially this week, to remember that our air is a fragile resource that we all impact in some way with our individual daily activities.

"Our job is to ensure that our citizens have clean and healthy air to breathe and to fulfill our responsibilities under the Clean Air Act to the citizens of Washoe County," stated Acting Washoe County Health Officer Kevin Dick. "We have programs in place designed to preserve our air quality. We strictly permit businesses that emit pollution in order to control those emissions. We require that old, dirty, and inefficient woodstoves are removed and replaced when homes are resold. And, we have the Keep it Clean. Know the Code program which informs residents during the winter months when they need to reduce wood burning during pollution episodes."

Dick reminds people that the summer months also present a major pollution problem – ozone. "Ozone is a reactive gas that forms when air pollutants mix on hot, sunny days creating summertime smog.  Breathing ozone can trigger a variety of health problems, including chest pain, coughing, throat irritation, and congestion.  It can also worsen bronchitis, emphysema, and asthma.  People with lung disease, children, older adults, and physically active people may be affected when ozone levels are unhealthy," Dick added. 

Air Quality Awareness Week is a good time to consider ways that you can help reduce air pollution and smog by considering alternatives to driving your car or truck. Riding a bike or walking to work or to the store can help. Taking the bus or commuting with others travelling in the same direction are other alternatives that help reduce vehicle emissions.  Or, consider purchasing an electric vehicle. "No matter how small the effort may be, it all helps," said Dick.

AQMD will post daily air quality themes and information on the Washoe County Health District's website, www.ourcleanair.com, throughout National Air Quality Awareness Week.  Themes include:

• Monday: Air Quality: Important at Every Age;
• Tuesday: Air Quality Matters Everywhere;
• Wednesday: Get Outside! And Use the Air Quality Index;
• Thursday: Help Your Neighbors: Increase Air Quality Awareness Where You Live; and
• Friday: Do Your Part: Reduce Your Contribution to Air Pollution.

Check the website everyday during National Air Quality Awareness Week for more information about these themes and about activities and ways you can help Keep it Clean.

From Washoe County Health District 

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