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10 New Jersey Counties Rated F for Ozone Pollution in US Air Quality Report

Posted on 5/6/2019 by Lauren Scott

New Jersey’s smog problem continues to worsen as the 2019 State of the Air report from the American Lung Association shows 10 counties rated F, the worst grade possible for ozone air quality, also known as ground-level air pollution or smog.

The ratings were compiled and examined from a Federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) study. The EPA study gathered data on air quality from metro areas across the US between 2015 and 2017. These metro areas include New York-Newark, Philadelphia-Reading-Camden, and the Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton area, which includes Warren County, NJ.

The American Lung Association divided this data by county, so we can see how different NJ counties stack up against each other in ozone air quality and particle pollution.
Lion’s Clean Air Act Regulations course is available online to bolster your knowledge of environmental regulations and keep your facility in compliance. Learn at your own pace, anytime, anywhere.  

Ground-Level Ozone (Smog)

Although the ozone layer is an important shield from the sun’s ultraviolet rays when it’s high in the stratosphere, when ozone is present at the ground level, it can be harmful to our health when inhaled. Ground-level ozone, or smog, is known to cause breathing problems, an increased risk of stroke, and premature death.

According to the study, smog has increased in the Garden State, with Camden County showing the worst figures. With an average of 10.8 high ozone level days per year, Camden’s smog problem has gotten worse two years in a row.

Do you know your facility's responsibilities under EPA's Clean Air Act? Join Lion for the Complete Environmental Regulations Workshop to get a handle on the air, water, and chemical regulations that EHS professionals should be familiar with. Catch the workshop in Houston, Anaheim, New Jersey, or Orlando.

In addition to Camden, the other counties to receive an F rating are Bergen, Gloucester, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, and Passaic counties. Essex and Morris counties received D ratings and Atlantic, Cumberland, and Warren counties received C ratings. All other counties were not included in the study.

Overall, the New York-Newark metro area is the 10th worst in the nation for ozone, remaining steady since the last report. Meanwhile, the Philadelphia-Reading-Camden area fell three spots since the last report and is now at 21st place for worst ozone levels.

Particle Pollution (Soot)

Particle pollution, or soot, is comprised of minuscule particles that enter the air after wildfires, burning coal, firing up older diesel engines, or other combustive sources. These small materials can become lodged deep in a person’s lungs, triggering respiratory problems, illness, and premature death.
Thankfully, NJ faired well with soot pollution. Nine counties received an A rating, the highest rating possible, including Atlantic, Essex, Gloucester, Hudson, Mercer, Middlesex, Morris, Passaic, and Warren counties.

Complete Environmental Regs Workshop Coming to Sparta, NJ in August

Calling all EHS professionals in the tri-state area! Make sure your facility is in compliance and up to date on the latest EPA regulations with Lion’s Complete Environmental Regulations Workshop coming to Sparta, NJ on August 19–20. You will leave with a comprehensive understanding of the environmental regulations that impact your facility, including Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, TSCA, EPCRA, CERCLA, and more. Learn more here or call 888-546-6511 to register.

Tags: American Lung Association, clean air, DEP, environmental, EPA, metro, New Jersey, NJ, ozone, pollution, smog, soot

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