Like many metropolitan areas, the Chicago area is no stranger to air pollution. That is why it is so important for residents to understand air pollution, where it comes from, how it can affect us, and, most importantly – what we can do to prevent it. So let’s start with the basics.
Know Your Air Quality
When we breathe, we take in more than just air. On some days, elevated levels of air pollution form, specifically ozone and particulate matter, which change the outdoor air quality. Just like the weather, our air quality is forecasted every day. The daily air quality receives an assigned category with a corresponding color, which allows individuals to know when to make voluntary actions or take health precautions. .
The Chicago area does not currently meet federal health-based standards for ground-level ozone and particulate matter. High levels of air pollution puts all of us at risk; especially sensitive groups, such as the elderly, children, people with respiratory or cardiovascular ailments, and individuals who exercise outdoors. On days when particulate matter and/or ozone levels are elevated, people may notice themselves coughing, wheezing or finding it harder to breathe. But WE can change that by taking action to help improve Chicago’s air quality!
Lets take action now and start making a difference in our neighborhoods!