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April 4, 2018

Health Department Accepting Nominations for “Air Quality Ally” Award

Pam Davenport - Email

Nicholas Rupp - Email

(SALT LAKE COUNTY)— The Salt Lake County Health Department (SLCoHD) announced today that the first-ever Air Quality Ally awards are accepting nominations in three categories: individual, business, and school.

“We want to recognize the people and entities in our community that have made specific, tangible efforts to improve air quality in Salt Lake County,” said Clare Coonan, chair of the Salt Lake County Board of Health. “That could be through their own personal air-friendly practices, or it could be through implementing policy change or engaging effectively in advocacy and awareness around this issue.”

The department will accept nominees for the award through April 16. Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams and the Salt Lake County Board of Health will present recipients with their awards at the Board of Health meeting on Thursday, May 3, at 8:00 a.m.

Environmental health scientists say that air quality is not just a winter concern for communities along the Wasatch Front. While summer ozone pollution is not as visible as the particulate pollution sometimes trapped by the valley’s winter inversions, it can be just as harmful to health—if not more so.

“Air quality is a year-round issue in Salt Lake County,” said Gary Edwards, executive director of SLCoHD. “This is an opportunity to thank those who are doing things that make a real difference in our air quality, and to highlight those things so others might also be motivated to do the same.”

Things individuals can do that will make a difference in our air quality: 

  • Reduce your vehicle emissions by
      • Carpooling
      • Cycling
      • Not idling
      • Skipping a trip
      • Telecommuting
      • Trip-chaining (doing all errands at once instead of making multiple trips out)
      • Using mass transit
      • Walking
      • When it’s time for a new car, purchasing a low- or no-emissions vehicle  
    • Reduce the emissions coming from your furnace or water heater by
      • Insulating your home
      • Lowering your thermostat
      • When you need to replace an appliance, purchasing the most efficient you can
      • Using low-VOC products
      • Using electric rather than gas-powered lawnmowers, snowblowers, etc.

    The Air Quality Ally nomination form is available at