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How is Air Quality Here in the Inland Empire?

Inland empire smog
Bryan Ungard
Flickr Creative Commons
Smog and haze seen over the Inland Empire from the San Bernardino Mountains.

Oct. 6 is California Clean Air Day. KVCR's Jonathan Linden spoke with Chris Chavez, who is with The Coalition for Clean Air, to discuss how air quality here in the Inland Empire and around the state.

In my 11-minute conversation with Chris Chavez, we discuss several variables of why air quality in the Inland Empire is often rated poorly and how people can address the issue.

Chavez is the Deputy Policy Director with the Coalition for Clean Air. The coalition says its mission is to protect public health, improve air quality, and prevent climate change. Chavez said the day "is supposed to be an event to engage all Californias... in opportunities to understand and take part in the effort to bring cleaner air to California."

California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment
Diagram showing air quality around the Inland Empire region.

In addressing the specifics of air quality in the Inland Empire, Chavez said the region faces unique facets and challenges. He said, "A good amount of pollution that is generated in the harbor area actually gets blown all the way out to Inland Empire."

He added that the Long Beach Habor is one of the busiest in the world and that most of the trucks transporting items from the harbor end up going through the inland region.

Online air quality resources Chavez mentioned include the State of the Air Report from the American Lung Association and the CalEnviroScreen from the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment.

Jonathan Linden is a reporter at 91.9 KVCR in San Bernardino, California. He joined KVCR in July 2021 and had previously interned for the station in the Spring of 2019. Outside of KVCR, Jonathan also interned for KALW in San Francisco, KFI in Burbank, and Radio HCJB in Quito, Ecuador.