What does this measure?
Air Quality Index (AQI) rating and main air pollutant count by day, from 2008 to 2018.
Why is this important?
The Air Quality Index (AQI) summarizes in one measure the levels of ground-level ozone, particulate matter (such as soot), carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen oxide. Exposure to these pollutants can cause short-term health effects such as irritation to the eyes, nose and throat; coughing; sneezing; runny nose; and shortness of breath. Continued exposure can also worsen medical conditions such as asthma and heart disease.
How is Erie County doing?
Erie County's count of AQI Good peaked in 2019 with 88.2% (322 days), a +15% increase in Good days over 2018. Overall AQI since 2015 has been higher than the preceding 8 years. Since 2015, the average number of Good days was 293.6 per year, between 2008 and 2015 that average was 224 per year. There have been no recorded Unhealthy days since 2017, and Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups days have declined since 2016, with none reported in 2018 or 2019.
For the last 4 years the highest average reported pollutant per day has been Ozone followed by PM2.5 particulates. This trend is the reverse for the years between 2008 and 2015, wherein PM2.5 particulates were the largest average contributor, followed by Ozone.
EVS analyzes the data in each topic category using indicators, which report a targeted and digestible number, rate, or amount to represent Erie County as a whole. While this does not cover every aspect of the topic, it assists in establishing Erie's performance relative to the prior year(s). The indicators for the Livability: Air Quality topic are:
This indicator measures th days in the last full year for which Erie County's air was of good or higher AQI rating. The trend for Air Quality was up and bettter in 2019, with a reported +11.5% increase of good air quality days within the County.
How does Erie compare to Pennsylvania?
About this Data
Data from Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as of 12/2020.
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