Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

A Livable City Must Have Breathable Air

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

A Livable City Must Have Breathable Air

Article excerpt

The American Lung Association has released another State of the Air report (April 19, "Study Says Region's Air Quality Among Worst in Nation"), and it is another year in which our region scored straight F's for smog. We often hear Pittsburgh touted as one of America's "most livable cities," but a livable city must have breathable air as a basic requirement.

It is high time that our elected officials act in the interest of their constituents' health. More than 20,000 kids and more than 105,000 adults in Allegheny County have asthma. Nearly half a million people are of ages that the American Lung Association deems vulnerable to air pollution.

Despite this, both Donald Trump's Environmental Protection Agency and the Bureau of Land Management recently proposed major rollbacks to protections that limit smog-forming pollution from the oil and gas industry. We cannot stand for this when Pennsylvania is the second-largest producer of natural gas and victim to some of the worst air in the nation.

If we're going to continue to promote our region as a great place to live, we need to do a much better job protecting our air quality, and elected officials must stand up against the unraveling of critical environmental standards.

NANCY BERNSTEIN

Squirrel Hill

The writer has a master of public health degree.

Cast informed votes

As a lifelong Democrat, busy with work and family, I typically just vote for who my party recommends when I vote in an off-year election. But this is not a typical year. This year there are multiple Democrats running in almost every race.

As a 14th Ward Democrat who moved to the northern suburbs of Pittsburgh eight years ago to raise my children, I am thrilled for the first time to have multiple Democrats to choose from to represent my views.

Yes, it's the primaries. And, yes, as Democrats, we can't win seats in Harrisburg and Washington until the general election in November. …

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