Rockland and Westchester both received a failing grade in this year’s air quality report by the American Lung Association.
Nine counties in the state received F’s for ozone including Rockland and Westchester. Rockland was one of only two counties in the state to drop two letter grades from a C to an F. At the same time, Putnam, which received a C, was one of only four counties in the state to see its grade for ozone improve.
No Hudson Valley County received an F in 2013.
Ozone is the most widespread air pollutant, created by the reaction of sunlight on emissions from vehicles and other sources. When ozone is inhaled, it irritates the lungs, almost like a bad sunburn. It can cause immediate health problems that continue days later. Ozone can cause wheezing, coughing, asthma attacks and premature death.
All counties in New York received passing grades for both short-term and annual particle pollution and most counties in the state had unchanged or improved annual levels compared with 2013.
To see the report, click here.