This Takes Our Breath Away
Emissions from coal- and oil-fired power plants have made the air in the Ohio River Valley dirtier than the air in the Northeast, according to a new scientific study commissioned by a coalition of Ohio environmental groups. The Northeastern states have long argued that pollution from Midwestern power plants drifts into their air; this study shows that the pollution also fouls air in the Midwest. Researchers tested the air quality in three Midwestern cities and found that residents there were exposed to higher levels of ozone smog for longer lengths of time than residents of New York, Boston, and Portland, Maine. Researchers also found that the Midwesterners went to the hospital more often for asthma attacks, emphysema, and other smog-related respiratory illnesses. The report calls for stronger pollution-control measures and the use of newer, cleaner technologies.