Air Quality Has Varying Impact on States

December 21, 2012

Varying percentages of each state’s residents are subjected to poor air quality.  Vermonters fare best.  Californians fare worst.

The beginning point for the table below are the grades given by the American Lung Association to each county in the country that is monitored for ground-level ozone and/or small particulate pollution.  (The column labeled “% Pop. Monitor.” is the percentage of each state’s population who live in monitored counties.)

The figures under grades A-F are the percentages of the monitored group in each state living in counties that received each of those grades.

The percentages are then combined into an index, with A’s equaling 1 and F’s equaling 5, for each of the pollutants. Those two scores are then added together to produce a Total Index. A perfect combined score would be 2.00; the worst possible is 10.0.

 

Ozone Small Particulates
Percentages of % Pop. Percentages of % Pop. Total
Rank State A’s B’s C’s D’s F’s Index Monitor. A’s B’s C’s D’s F’s Index Monitor. Index
1 Vermont 100.0 1.00 31.0 75.9 24.1 1.24 40.8 2.24
2 North Dakota 100.0 1.00 37.8 3.8 96.2 1.96 35.7 2.96
3 Hawaii 100.0 1.00 70.1 12.0 73.7 14.3 2.31 95.1 3.31
4 Kansas 11.4 53.5 35.0 2.24 52.3 87.4 12.6 1.13 49.5 3.36
5 South Dakota 100.0 1.00 29.2 9.7 43.2 44.9 2.2 2.40 46.4 3.40
6 Wyoming 36.1 39.4 19.5 5.0 2.18 36.5 66.8 33.2 1.33 57.6 3.51
7 Nebraska 100.0 1.00 43.9 8.9 28.4 62.8 2.54 59.0 3.54
8 New Mexico 28.9 56.7 14.4 2.00 70.5 83.2 16.8 1.67 60.5 3.67
9 Florida 9.4 51.6 26.5 4.1 8.4 2.51 87.5 72.1 27.9 1.28 74.6 3.78
10 Arkansas 1.3 33.6 57.5 7.6 2.79 22.8 98.6 1.4 1.01 43.0 3.81
11 Mississippi 16.9 32.4 31.3 19.4 3.04 32.5 100.0 1.00 38.0 4.04
12 Montana 100.0 1.00 9.2 21.5 2.4 46.6 7.3 22.1 3.06 47.3 4.06
13 Maine 14.3 36.1 27.8 21.8 2.57 86.9 38.1 61.9 1.62 65.3 4.19
14 Alaska 100.0 2.00 0.8 57.3 23.6 19.1 2.24 71.8 4.24
15 South Carolina 14.5 25.2 30.8 4.5 25.0 3.00 57.9 76.3 23.7 1.24 43.6 4.24
16 Oregon 41.7 33.6 24.7 1.83 72.9 35.6 37.7 26.7 2.45 61.4 4.28
17 Minnesota 96.0 4.0 1.04 29.4 7.5 73.6 18.9 3.30 50.6 4.34
18 Colorado 22.6 48.5 7.6 21.4 3.28 77.5 80.5 15.4 4.1 1.28 70.9 4.55
19 Oklahoma 17.8 16.3 7.5 58.3 3.65 60.5 98.5 1.5 1.01 41.3 4.66
20 New Hampshire 33.8 3.0 63.2 3.29 83.7 51.5 41.3 7.2 1.56 81.2 4.85
21 West Virginia 5.2 29.2 61.2 4.5 2.65 37.1 19.7 38.2 39.5 2.6 2.25 49.3 4.90
22 Iowa 98.6 1.4 1.01 34.8 11.0 7.2 48.8 33.0 4.04 46.6 5.05
23 Idaho 26.5 73.5 2.47 34.0 11.7 26.7 55.5 1.8 4.2 2.60 45.1 5.07
24 Kentucky 13.0 32.7 21.7 32.7 3.07 56.5 45.0 21.2 33.8 2.23 50.5 5.29
25 Massachusetts 39.5 14.9 45.7 4.06 91.2 75.6 24.4 1.24 82.5 5.31
26 Alabama 29.2 0.6 17.9 52.3 3.46 50.6 41.7 35.4 22.9 2.04 60.1 5.50
27 Louisiana 5.2 13.0 16.2 16.1 57.7 4.33 65.3 76.2 23.8 1.24 43.4 5.57
28 North Carolina 0.3 12.8 21.3 3.6 62.1 4.14 54.6 57.3 42.7 1.43 53.5 5.57
29 Rhode Island 18.1 81.9 3.82 87.4 21.0 79.0 1.79 75.3 5.61
30 Michigan 9.0 8.4 40.5 4.1 38.1 3.54 70.7 30.9 42.8 25.7 0.5 2.22 71.6 5.76
31 Washington 16.2 16.7 19.6 47.5 2.98 60.4 42.2 10.3 9.3 38.3 2.91 68.1 5.90
32 Texas 3.7 5.7 8.0 7.3 75.3 4.45 70.8 45.7 48.8 5.5 1.65 57.7 6.10
33 Missouri 0.3 14.8 14.8 48.0 22.0 3.77 43.9 0.5 65.4 34.1 2.34 48.6 6.10
34 Tennessee 7.3 32.4 60.3 4.13 56.7 15.1 72.2 12.6 1.97 53.9 6.11
35 Indiana 20.2 20.9 58.9 2.39 65.5 10.3 16.5 14.9 3.0 55.3 3.76 56.4 6.15
36 New York 6.4 21.1 48.1 24.4 3.91 69.0 5.6 37.8 47.5 9.1 2.60 53.1 6.51
37 Georgia 7.4 3.8 12.3 19.2 57.4 4.15 51.8 17.6 28.2 54.2 2.37 54.0 6.52
38 Wisconsin 58.3 2.4 0.5 32.0 6.7 2.26 73.5 13.2 13.1 73.7 4.34 53.7 6.61
39 Virginia 0.7 7.9 19.6 1.2 70.7 4.33 45.2 15.4 65.4 6.9 12.4 2.35 44.3 6.69
40 Illinois 31.7 6.4 9.4 52.6 3.35 81.0 32.2 5.7 9.4 52.6 3.35 80.9 6.70
41 Arizona 1.8 5.7 18.8 73.7 4.38 94.3 28.0 65.6 6.4 2.50 92.2 6.88
42 Nevada 2.1 1.4 2.2 16.8 77.6 4.66 93.1 82.2 17.8 2.36 87.9 7.02
43 New Jersey 12.4 87.6 4.88 71.4 31.8 16.2 52.0 2.20 77.2 7.08
44 Ohio 6.8 17.9 8.4 66.8 4.35 76.7 9.7 17.2 33.9 32.2 7.1 3.10 66.2 7.45
45 Connecticut 5.5 25.9 68.6 4.63 96.7 6.1 28.5 38.0 27.5 2.87 87.8 7.50
46 Maryland 12.9 4.0 83.1 4.70 87.1 5.7 22.6 38.4 18.8 14.5 3.14 74.3 7.84
47 Delaware 100.0 5.00 100.0 40.0 60.0 3.40 100.0 8.40
48 Pennsylvania 2.8 10.9 9.7 76.6 4.60 83.5 13.6 17.1 25.1 44.2 4.00 72.1 8.60
49 Utah 4.5 6.1 25.1 9.3 55.0 4.04 90.1 2.5 97.5 4.95 83.4 8.99
50 California 5.8 3.1 0.4 0.1 90.6 4.67 99.5 4.1 8.1 6.4 4.8 76.7 4.42 97.0 9.08

Sources: Grades are from American Lung Association’s “State of the Air 2012.” County populations from U.S. Census Bureau.

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