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  • Writer's pictureH. James Tripp

Get $$ To Clear The Air

Updated: Aug 2, 2020

The Tortolita Alliance would like to add its voice to the Town of Marana's promotion of Pima County's "Cut Down Pollution" program. We need to halt the growing problem of ground-level ozone pollution in the Tucson area before it progresses any more toward the dismal and worsening situation in Phoenix.

An April, 2019 Arizona Republic article reported that Phoenix is now ranked 7th for the most ozone pollution in the US and received a grade of 'F' in the American Lung Association's "20th Annual 'State of the Air' Report." The 6 worst cities were all in Southern California and the Central Valley. Thankfully, Tucson did not appear on this list of only the 25 worst cities.

The links above report that Beth Gorman of Pima County's Department of Environmental Quality reports, "Our region exceeded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s health standard for ground-level ozone on some days in recent years." In response to this trend, Pima County is offering $50 to $200 vouchers to residents and businesses who convert their gas powered landscaping equipment to electric.

We applaud this incentive and any measure that will prevent the Tucson air quality to follow the pattern of Phoenix and California. At the same time, we note that, as these links report, the primary polluter is gasoline-powered cars. Higher fuel efficient cars with tighter emission controls are helping to improve the ozone problems in Southern California and Phoenix, but their ozone problem was so acute, that these improvements still resulted in a grade of 'F' by the American Lung Association.

Maybe converting landscaping equipment to electric power will offset expected worsening of ozone levels due to the contribution of added cars in planned suburban developments.


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