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Wildfire Smoke Means More Poor Grades For Air Quality

(April 18, 2018) -

For more information please contact:

James Martinez
[email protected]
(312) 445-2501

For the second consecutive year, the American Lung Association’s annual State of the Air Report gives North Dakota poor grades for air quality. The reason for the low marks for particulate pollution are well-known – smoking drifting into the state from western U.S. and Canadian wildfires. Nine counties in North Dakota have air quality monitors and are included in the report.  For particle pollution, Burke and Dunn counties both earned “F” grades for particulate pollution; Burleigh, McKenzie, Mercer, Oliver, and Williams counties earned “D” grades for particulates; Billings and Cass counties earned a “C” grade. The state’s grades for ozone pollution, all “A” and “B” grades, were unchanged from last year’s report. The entire report can be found at

“North Dakota has some opportunities to improve air quality statewide with its $8 million settlement from Volkswagen,” said Robert Moffitt, a spokesperson for the American Lung Association in North Dakota. “There are also plans to make I-94 and I-29 ready for electric vehicles, and to generally raise awareness of cleaner transportation options available in the state.”

The State of the Air Report covers a three year period from 2014 to 2016, analyzing data collected at air quality monitors operated by the State Department of Health and certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.  Grades are determined by the number of air quality alerts for ozone or particle pollution that occurred during those three years. 


About the American Lung Association

The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease, through research, education and advocacy. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to improve the air we breathe; to reduce the burden of lung disease on individuals and their families; and to eliminate tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit:

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