There are a lot of things in Philly that we know we shouldn’t hold our breath for: lower gas prices, cleaner sidewalks, prompt SEPTA service, quality public education for all.
But, when it comes to merely walking around town, we may have to start investing in fashionable surgical masks imported from Japan.
The American Lung Association has placed Philly at the no. 10 spot in their list of the Top 10 Most Polluted Cities.
Just for the record, we did tie St. Louis for particle pollution, so we can take refuge in the fact there’s somewhere else that’s equally as terrible. Cities in Californian fill up spots one through seven in terms of ozone pollution, so we’re not officially in smog hell just yet.
Even though we didn’t make the top 10 for ozone pollution, we still managed to sit comfortably in the top 20, coming in at no. 16.
Regardless of our ranking, this is rather embarrassing. In a city where we are making such a push toward sustainable living, our air quality should be a heck of a lot better. In twenty years, it may be commonplace for us to be able to grow food through solar power and natural rainfall collection, but if we can’t step outside for a breath of fresh air, what’s the point?
Photo via Associated Press