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Thu Apr 25, 2019, 04:00 PM

Seattle's air quality is among the worst in the nation

Air quality in Washington has gotten worse.

The Seattle-Tacoma metro area ranked among the 10 most polluted cities by the American Lung Association in its annual "State of the Air" report released earlier this month -- and it wasn't the only Washington city to make the list, nor the worst.

The main reason: wildfires.

"People in the Puget Sound area should know that we're breathing unhealthy air, driven by wildfires as a result of climate change, placing our health and even lives at risk," Allison Hickey, national executive vice president for the American Lung Association Western Region, said in a news release.

The region has moved from the 15th most polluted metro area for short-term particle pollution, such as what hangs in the air after a wildfire, to the ninth.

"Particle pollution is made of soot or tiny particles that come from coal-fired power plants, diesel emissions, wildfires and wood-burning devices. These particles are so small that they can lodge deep in the lungs and trigger asthma attacks, heart attacks and strokes, and can even be lethal," Hickey said. "Right now, more than four in 10 Americans are living with unhealthy air, and we're heading in the wrong direction when it comes to protecting public health and people's lives."


The air was pretty bad when the fires were going on.

Maybe we need to rake the forest floors a bit more. /s

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