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Air Quality Report Gives KC Low Marks

By Kelley Weiss


Kansas City, MO – The American Lung Association's State of the Air annual report shows rising pollution levels in the Kansas City area. KCUR's Kelley Weiss reports.

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The study reports failing grades for the Kansas City region's outdoor air quality. The lung association used letter grades to rate six counties in both Kansas and Missouri. Some of the worst grades were given to Clay County, which got an "F" for ozone pollution, and Wyandotte County, which got a "D" for particle pollution.

Susannah Fuchs, with the Missouri Lung Association, says air pollution levels have gradually increased around the metropolitan area in the last few years.

Susannah Fuchs: "The trend is for it to be on the rise. And, it seems like we need to be really vigilant about taking steps to reduce the sources and protect ourselves because it's not going to go away right away."

Nationally, Kansas City is the 20th Most Polluted City, while Los Angeles topped the list. The Mid-America Regional Council predicts that the Kansas City area will break EPA ground level ozone standards this summer.

Funding for health care coverage on KCUR has been provided by the Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City.

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