Air pollution is a mixture of solid particles and gases in the air. Many activities pollute the air we breathe, including driving cars and trucks; burning coal, oil, and other fossil fuels; and even such everyday activities as dry cleaning, painting operations, and filling your car with gas. When these gases and particles accumulate in the air in high enough concentrations, they can harm us and our environment. The Clean Air Act, first passed in 1970, was created to clean up air pollution and help protect the health of all Americans.
To learn more about your outdoor and indoor air quality, visit the links below.
Outdoor Air Quality
Older adults, children, and people with health issues may be at risk when air quality is poor. Understanding the air quality index and using this map to check air quality in your area can help you take precautions.
If you are considering moving, use this map to compare air quality for different counties.
Indoor Air Quality
The air quality in your home can affect your health. Read this article for tips and information on giving your home a healthy air check-up.
Protection of the environment is managed at the federal and state levels.
Air Pollutants, Clean Water, and Safe Drinking Laws
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) addresses several issues, from setting limits on certain air pollutants to enforcing federal clean water and safe drinking laws. In addition, EPA enforces federal regulations to reduce the impact of businesses on the environment.
Issues Relating to Tribal, State, and Local Agencies
Many environmental programs have been delegated to the states and they have primary responsibility over them. In addition, some environmental laws and regulations apply to tribal government operations.
Water quality is the measure of the suitability of water for drinking or household needs, fishing, or other purposes.
Drinking water that is contaminated with chemicals or organisms could cause sickness. The Safe Drinking Water Act was created to set legal limits on the level of certain contaminants in drinking water to ensure that it is safe.
Watersheds are areas of land where groundwater seeps into pores between sand, rock, and clay formations. Watersheds drain into surface water, such as streams, lakes, rivers, and oceans. The quality of groundwater in watersheds and surface water can impact human health and wildlife: