quality airThe past holiday and winter season apparently didn’t do anything to ease the rage of Utahns about air quality.

In the annual values study conducted by Envision Utah, residents were asked to make a list of the best and worst things about living in the Beehive State. People overwhelmingly listed the poor air quality as the top concern in the way of a better quality of life. Based on the results, the problem of air quality is a bigger issue compared to the state’s lack of diversity, constraints in education, and the availability of water.

Breathing Healthy

Utah-based HVAC company Hartman explains that air pollutants, even from the outdoors, affect the air quality inside homes. This often leads to health problems and aggravation of existing conditions. The company encourages homeowners to step up their own efforts in ensuring clean air indoors by getting air filtration systems for their homes.

The company adds that simple things like maintaining the HVAC system, cleaning the ducts, and replacing or cleaning used filters go a long way.

Government Effort

Envision Utah conducted the study involving 1,000 Utahns in August and September of 2014 to find out how residents feel about the state’s future.

Besides the general disappointment and angst about the state’s poor air quality, respondents also cited the government’s effort to clean up the air as lacking.

Residents living in the rural areas outside the seven counties of Wasatch Front — which experienced the worst of the wintertime particulate pollution — gave the government slightly better marks for their actions on improving air quality.

Utahns said air quality is the third-most important priority for securing a good future for the state, just behind water and education. Urban residents placed more emphasis on the importance of air quality than rural residents.

Envision Utah COO said the concern of residents about air quality relates primarily to its health impacts, the inability to enjoy the outdoors when air quality is poor, and the legacy current residents will leave for future generations.

As with any problem affecting the public, awareness with the air quality problem is the first step to fixing it.

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