Stronger Pollution Standards Mean Better Health

Particulate matter air pollution—also known as soot—is dangerous to breathe. Stronger limits on this pollutant are necessary to improve air quality and health.

More than 4 in 10 people live in counties with unhealthy air, according to the Lung Association's 2022 "State of the Air" report. Under the Clean Air Act, there are national limits in place on many outdoor air pollutants, including particle pollution, called the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS.) But the latest science shows that the current limits are too weak—leaving the health of millions at risk.

Right now, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is considering strengthening the particle pollution NAAQS. If they follow current science and strengthen the standards, the whole country could see immense health benefits.

Health Professionals Call for Stronger Soot Standards

The Medical Society Consortium on Climate and Health logo

Health professionals see firsthand the health impacts of air pollution. Through partnership with the Medical Society Consortium on Climate and Health, we asked health professionals to share their stories and to call on EPA to strengthen particulate matter standards.

Additional Information

  • Learn more about the health impacts of particulate matter air pollution, and find out the quality of the air you’re breathing, in our "State of the Air" report.
  • Learn more about the Clean Air Act from our factsheet.
  • Learn more about the National Ambient Air Quality Standards from our factsheet.

Page last updated: November 17, 2022

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