State Sees Improvement In Air Quality Grades

(April 30, 2014)

SIOUX FALLS, SD -- South Dakota’s grades for air quality improved in the latest American Lung Association State of the Air Report.  The report cites Rapid City and Sioux Falls as among the cleanest cities for ozone pollution, and the Rapid City area was ranked as the 10th cleanest metro area in the country for year-round particle pollution.  Brookings, Custer, Jackson, Meade, Minnehaha and Union counties all retained the “A” grades in ozone pollution they earned in last year’s report.  Brookings and Codington counties scores for particle pollution improved from “B” to “A” grades this year; Union County went from a “C” for particle pollution to a “B” grade. The most improved was Custer County, which scored a “B” grade, up from a “D” last year. To see the complete report, click here.

The State of the Air Report uses data collected at state-owned air quality monitors and certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. This year’s report analyzed data from the three-year period of 2010 to 2012. Grades are determined by the number of air quality alerts for ozone or particle pollution that occurred during those three years.

Ozone and particle pollution can trigger asthma attacks, put people at higher risk of respiratory and cardiovascular disease, and are a particular health concern for people with preexisting lung disease, the very young and the elderly.

2014 SOTA