Recently, the American Lung Association of Virginia graded Fairfax County’s ozone pollution levels as “F.”
The true answers/solutions are more nuanced than a stark letter grade.
Air quality is a regional and national issue, not a local issue. It’s important to understand that air pollution travels beyond city, county and state boundaries.
“On the worst air quality days in our region, up to 70 percent of the ozone can be attributed to sources outside the D.C. area,” says Kambiz Agazi, the county’s environmental coordinator.
Fairfax County recognizes that the region has not attained the existing National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for ozone.
We do agree with the American Lung Association that there’s more work to be done when it comes to improving air quality. This is why the local and state governments in our region are working together to identify and implement additional actions that could further reduce ozone levels and assist in protecting public health.
Residents play an important role too.
Cars are a major source for ozone, and you can help reduce pollution by taking public transit. Try the region’s new “Car Free A to Z” website to find alternate ways around.
Learn more about air quality through these graphics: