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We’re not so dirty

County air cleaner, but still fails federal, state standards

Cruise ships in San Diego no longer have to idle their diesels - Image by Port of San Diego/Wikipedia
Cruise ships in San Diego no longer have to idle their diesels

Air quality in San Diego County is the best it's been since pollution-tracking standards were implemented in the 1950s, but the region still fails to meet federal standards for ozone and particulate-matter release, according to a report recently released by the county's Air Pollution Control District.

The county attributes several programs implemented since 1989 in reducing overall pollution risks. The likelihood of residents developing cancer near two regional testing sites in El Cajon and Chula Vista have been reduced by 78 and 74 percent, respectively.

Grants amounting to $130 million have provided ship-to-shore power to prevent cruise and freight ships from idling their diesel engines while in port, eliminating "several thousand tons of air pollutants."

A lawnmower-exchange program started in 2000 has replaced 7600 gas-powered mowers with electric units, cutting 38 tons of air pollution per year. Vapor-recovery nozzles now common at gas stations nationwide prevent 8 to 10 pounds of vapor from being released for every 1000 gallons of gas pumped.

In 1988, ozone levels in the county were considered to be excessive 160 days out of the year. Last year, that count dropped to 2.

Still, pollution levels fail to meet federal and state standards, particularly in heavily impacted areas such as Barrio Logan and Otay Mesa. To that end, the county is promoting a tip sheet to encourage individual effort from residents to continue reducing pollution levels.

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Cruise ships in San Diego no longer have to idle their diesels - Image by Port of San Diego/Wikipedia
Cruise ships in San Diego no longer have to idle their diesels

Air quality in San Diego County is the best it's been since pollution-tracking standards were implemented in the 1950s, but the region still fails to meet federal standards for ozone and particulate-matter release, according to a report recently released by the county's Air Pollution Control District.

The county attributes several programs implemented since 1989 in reducing overall pollution risks. The likelihood of residents developing cancer near two regional testing sites in El Cajon and Chula Vista have been reduced by 78 and 74 percent, respectively.

Grants amounting to $130 million have provided ship-to-shore power to prevent cruise and freight ships from idling their diesel engines while in port, eliminating "several thousand tons of air pollutants."

A lawnmower-exchange program started in 2000 has replaced 7600 gas-powered mowers with electric units, cutting 38 tons of air pollution per year. Vapor-recovery nozzles now common at gas stations nationwide prevent 8 to 10 pounds of vapor from being released for every 1000 gallons of gas pumped.

In 1988, ozone levels in the county were considered to be excessive 160 days out of the year. Last year, that count dropped to 2.

Still, pollution levels fail to meet federal and state standards, particularly in heavily impacted areas such as Barrio Logan and Otay Mesa. To that end, the county is promoting a tip sheet to encourage individual effort from residents to continue reducing pollution levels.

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1

The independent gas stations and the low-end chains are not using the vapor recovery nozzles, and that seems where many people are going to gas up. The other thing that would help greatly is better public trans. There are just way too many cars on the highway and the back ups at rush hour create tons of pollution.

July 20, 2014

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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