How to improve Utah’s air quality

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Thom Carter, Executive Director of UCAIR, spoke on how poor air quality impacts everyone and experts at the Division of Air Quality tell us that when the inversion is in place, air pollution doubles daily!

UCAIR teamed with Lighthouse research this fall, and we heard from Utahns, that they realize the most significant contributor to our poor air quality is vehicle emissions.

The good news, there are easy things you can do to help improve our air quality. A bonus, many may also save you money.

Two things you can do today:

  • Don’t idle—Shutting off your car while you wait. If you’re expecting to pick your kids or friends up likely, others are too and nobody wants to walk through all of that polluting exhaust that then travels miles and miles into our air.
  • Skip the Trip—Opt to make dinner at home rather than going out and pack a lunch tonight to bring to work tomorrow.

UCAIR has many other easy things and programs that are helping with better air quality. Plan to make one or all of these part of your winter routine:

  • Carpool—It’s an excellent way to reconnect with friends and co-workers. Through UCAIR’s partner TravelWise, you can find others on your route. Find it on travelwise.utah.gov.
  • Telework—If your employers offer this option, use those extra 30 or 40 minutes you’d be in your car and put them toward catching up on your inbox or spend them with your family.
  • Bike or walk—If you’re trying to stick with an exercise New Year’s resolution, this will help get those steps or extra cardio in.
  • Take public transit—One day a week rather than driving will save you money on gas and help improve our air.

While vehicles are the biggest contributor during and inversion, gas-powered snowblowers, wood burning stoves, and furnaces also emit pollution.

UCAIR recommend switching to a zero-emission electric snow blower. Be sure to watch burning advisories and better off, switch to natural gas.

For more information visit ucair.org

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