air quality | KUER 90.1

air quality

Point of the mountain map.
Screenshot: Geneva Rock

A construction-products company is dusting off a request to expand its gravel-mining operation at the Point of the Mountain, raising concerns that the expansion could add more air pollution at a popular recreation spot and fast-growing communities nearby.

A new study shows air pollution like soot, dust and smoke is down around the country with one exception: wildfire prone areas like the Mountain West.  

inversion over salt lake valley.
KUER News

A new air-quality law has just gone into effect that may go unnoticed by many Utahns. Since the beginning of July, all water heaters sold or installed in the state have to be low-emissions models.

slightl smog over rolling desert landscape.
EPA AirNow

Pristine lakes, unspoiled land and fresh air: that's the picture that comes to mind when talking about America's national parks. But air pollution in the nation's crown jewels actually rivals levels found in big cities. And that's driving people away from those protected lands, according to a new study.

File photo / KUER

The Environmental Protection Agency’s Scott Pruitt may have resigned but the controversies continue. A recently disclosed collection of emails between the EPA, an oil and gas lobbyist and at least one elected official in Utah are causing concern.

Garrett via Wikimedia Commons

People know they can help clear the Salt Lake Valley’s air by hopping onto TRAX trains.

What they might not know is how an air-quality monitor mounted on the roof of a train car is also helping solve the valley’s pollution puzzle.

Mariordo Mario Roberto Duran Ortiz/WikiMediaCommons

State environmental officials on Tuesday announced how they plan to spend Utah’s share of a $15.7 billion national settlement from the Volkswagen emissions-tampering scandal.

 

Judy Fahys/KUER News

A new report from the American Thoracic Society shows how tightening federal air-pollution standards would pay off in better health and longer lives.

The Environmental Protection Agency just announced its plan to roll back vehicle emissions standards. That could be cause for concern in Mountain West communities with poor air quality.

Judy Fahys/KUER News

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said he’s putting new limits on which scientific studies can be factored into the nation’s environmental laws and policies. He told the conservative web site, The Daily Caller, last week that he wants more “transparency” in scientific research.

KUER

This week lawmakers paused to honor the 17 lives lost in a school shooting in Parkland, Fla. But the latest school violence is unlikely to persuade Republican leaders to propose any big changes to gun laws this session. Meanwhile, a committee finally approved something close to a resolution acknowledging climate change without actually using the phrase "climate change." We also talk about some air quality bills and medical marijuana. Rep. Steve Eliason joins us on 'Better Know A Lawmaker' and explains how he's tackling Utah's youth suicide problem. 

Nicole Nixon / KUER

Utahns took advantage of free transit last month when Salt Lake officials foot the bill to help combat air pollution.

Julia Ritchey / KUER

Tuesday was the first red air day of the winter season in the Salt Lake Valley. Members of the Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce used it to promote an initiative to get companies to reward their employees for driving less.

Judy Fahys / KUER News


We roll up in a tour bus to the white bones of what used to be a zinc plant in Donora, Pa. We pass the vacant lot where the steel mill was. Both industrial plants shut down decades ago, so it’s hard now to imagine this dull place as the epicenter of a world-famous tragedy.

Judy Fahys / KUER News

Wasatch Front businesses want environmental regulators to clean up the air. Dozens of companies are pressing for strong, ambitious solutions for winter smog.

Clean-Air Groups Say Two Bills Should Get The Veto Pen

Feb 27, 2017
MATEOUTAH VIA CC/FLICKR, HTTP://TINYURL.COM/ZYZKLV8

Clean-air advocates called on Utah Governor Gary Herbert Monday to veto two bills they say would negatively impact air quality in the state.

Judy Fahys / KUER News

Students from the Madeleine Choir School marched through the snowy, chilly morning Thursday.

They chanted “What do you want? Clean air. When do you want it? Right now” on their way to the Capitol steps. That’s where hundreds gathered to rally anyone who’d listen.

Julia Ritchey, KUER

Governor Gary Herbert delivered his State of the State address to the Utah Legislature Wednesday night, promising to keep up the state’s progress in economic growth and education.

Judy Fahys / KUER News

A new study names air quality as the second-highest priority for Utah voters. More than two-thirds of voters who were polled by the non-partisan Utah Foundation say they are pretty concerned about the issue.

iStockPhoto.com – ChrisBoswell

Fires along the Wasatch front have increased particulate matter in the air around Salt Lake City. That can be hard on people exercising, especially cyclists racing in the tour of Utah.

Penn State / Flicker Creative Commons

The Department of Environmental Quality wants to help Utahns to swap out noisy, exhaust-sputtering gas lawn equipment with quieter and cleaner electric models.

They're doing it through the CARROT incentive program.

Nicole Nixon

Hundreds of elementary school students met at the state capitol on Thursday morning asking for solutions to the state’s air quality problem.  

Whittney Evans

Salt Lake County is expanding its Vehicle Repair Assistance Program, which helps qualified residents improve their cars and the air along the Wasatch Front.

Judy Fahys/KUER

The 2016 General Session of the Utah Legislature begins Monday, and lawmakers already have more than a dozen initiatives on their agenda aimed at improving air quality.

KUER Conversations: Pollution Gets Personal

Jan 21, 2016

On Thursday, January 14, KUER hosted a panel discussion on air quality called Pollution Gets Personal at the Salt Lake City Public Library. The program was the first in a new series of solutions-based discussions called KUER Conversations. Pollution Gets Personal dealt primarily with pollution generated from businesses and homes, what air quality experts call: area sources.  KUER environmental reporter Judy Fahys moderated the discussion with panelists and members of the audience.

UTA Unveils Natural Gas Fueling Station for Buses

Dec 30, 2015
Whittney Evans

Utah Transit Authority is prepared to run more buses on cleaner fuels with its brand new compressed natural gas fueling station.

KUER Conversations: Pollution Gets Personal

Dec 28, 2015
FLICKR CREATIVE COMMONS

KUER Conversations: Pollution Gets Personal
Discussion about politics and individual choices in cleaning up Utah's air. 

U Launches Electric Car Discount Program

Dec 14, 2015
Image courtesy University of Utah

The University of Utah is hoping to reduce its emissions by targeting commuters. The U launched a program Monday to help community members buy electric cars at a cheaper price.

Judy Fahys/KUER

Environmental groups have ideas for regulators about cutting the industrial emissions that contribute to Utah’s winter pollution.

The Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment, HEAL Utah and Western Resource Advocates say air pollution harms quality of life in Utah too much of the time.

“Folks in Utah know this because your kinds can’t go out and play on the playground,” says Joan Clayburgh, spokeswoman for Western Resource Advocates. “Our grandparents and our parents and the elderly are told maybe not to go out during the day. This is our right to have clean air.”

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