State of the Air Shared Stories

We all have a reason to fight for clean air. Check out some personal stories below that highlight the need for healthy, safe air.

Share your story

  • Laura K., NC

    Imagine how helpless you would feel if you had to watch your child struggle to stay afloat in the deep end of a...Read more

  • Dawn B., PA

    In early March of this year, Dawn, 43, received sobering news that her mother Barbara was diagnosed with lung cancer....Read more

  • Vickie A., PA

    It took a while for Vickie to get a grip on her advanced asthma. The disease, in remission during her teen and early...Read more

  • Dawn P., PA

    In early March of this year, Dawn, 43, received sobering news that her mother Barbara was diagnosed with lung cancer....Read more

  • Skylar H., PA

    One day when Skylar was just an infant, her lips suddenly turned blue and she was having an extremely difficult time...Read more

  • Angela and Cameron D., PA

    Angela has had to deal with something that no parent wishes to go through: the loss of a child. Her son, Cameron, was...Read more

  • Carlene G., MT

    After her most recent hospitalization and coma, Carlene had to tell her three sons what no parent wants to tell their...Read more

  • Rex G., PA

    At almost two and a half years old, Rex has already been rushed to the emergency room several times. Suffering from...Read more

  • Norma R., OR

    I have bronchiectasis, which causes inflammation to the bronchial tubes and windpipes that started after having...Read more

  • Jean R., IA

    I have emphysema, as well as chronic bronchitis. I smoked for 30 years and quit in 1992. I went to my family doctor in...Read more

  • Mike S., CA

    As I write this, I am fighting to breathe clean air. My name is Mike and I have idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, which is...Read more

  • John H., VA

    I picked up the smoking habit in my teens when it was "cool."

    I spent my career working around just about every...Read more

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Did You Know?

  1. More than 5 out of 10 people live where the air they breathe earned an F in State of the Air 2016.
  2. Nearly 166 million people live in counties that received an F for either ozone or particle pollution in State of the Air 2016.
  3. Nearly 20 million people live in counties that got an F for all three air pollution measures in State of the Air 2016.
  4. Breathing ozone irritates the lungs, resulting in something like a bad sunburn within the lungs.
  5. Breathing in particle pollution can increase the risk of lung cancer, according to the World Health Organization.
  6. Particle pollution can also cause early death and heart attacks, strokes and emergency room visits for people with asthma, cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
  7. Particles are smaller than 1/30th the diameter of a human hair. When you inhale them, they are small enough to get past the body's natural defenses.
  8. Ozone and particle pollution are both linked to increased risk of lower birth weight in newborns.
  9. Do you live near, or work on or near a busy highway? Pollution from the traffic may put you at greater risk of harm.
  10. People who work or exercise outside face increased risk from the effects of air pollution.
  11. Millions of people are especially vulnerable to the effects of air pollution, including infants, older adults and people with lung diseases like asthma.
  12. People of color and those earning lower incomes are often disproportionately affected by air pollution which put them at higher risk for illnesses.
  13. Air pollution is a serious health threat. It can trigger asthma attacks, harm lung development in children, and can even be deadly.
  14. You can protect your family by checking the air quality forecasts in your community and avoiding exercising or working outdoors when the unhealthy air is expected.
  15. Big polluters and some members of Congress are trying to change the Clean Air Act and dismantle 45 years' of progress. The Lung Association is fighting to keep the law strong to continue to protect public health.
  16. Cutting air pollution through the Clean Air Act will prevent at least 230,000 deaths and save $2 trillion annually by 2020.
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