California Clean Air Day: Take the Pledge!
Los Angeles has some of the worst air pollution in the nation and last year set a record with 87 consecutive days that violated the federal smog standards. This is a record we don’t want to have!
The primary ingredient in smog is ozone, which can lead to the development of asthma, complicate breathing-related medical conditions, cause permanent lung damage and even premature death.
Nearly 75% of ozone pollution comes from mobile sources like ships, planes, and vehicles with almost half of that total coming from on-road vehicles. The large number of cars on the road in Southern California emit huge quantities of pollutants like nitrogen oxides (“NOx”), carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons. Our warm summer weather creates the ideal conditions for ozone to form from these tailpipe emissions and adversely impact our health.
Another significant contributor to air pollution is lawn, garden and landscape equipment powered by small gasoline engines. These small engines pollute at a significantly higher rate than vehicles. According to the California Air Resources Board a new gas mower used for an hour generates as much smog-causing pollution as driving from LA to Las Vegas! Old gas-powered lawn equipment is even dirtier. Now might be the time to replace that gas leaf blower or lawn mower with clean electric ones for a quieter and cleaner outdoor experience.
Personal actions as simple as eliminating idling while waiting in a car can have a substantial impact on our air and our health. Monitoring at schools has shown elevated levels of benzene, formaldehyde, and other air toxins in the air during the afternoon when parents are picking up their kids. Time to turn off the engine for everyone’s health!
Here are some sample actions you can pledge for October 2:
- Bike or walk to work
- Don’t idle or use drive-throughs
- Plant a tree, garden or an indoor plant
- Change your home air filter
- Replace gas-powered yard tools with electric or hand tools.
Don’t restrict yourself to October 2. Consider these everyday!
For a long term commitment to clean the air, consider an electric vehicle. Join us for an Electric Vehicle Lunch & Learn in the community room at the Grant R. Brimhall (Thousand Oaks) Library and enjoy free pizza and drinks on Friday October 4th from 12-1 pm to learn about vehicle options, performance, range, rebates and much more.