iOS app Android app More

Deadliest Air Pollution In U.S.: 10 Worst Cities (PHOTOS)

The Huffington Post   First Posted: 05/03/11 10:09 AM ET   Updated: 07/03/11 06:12 AM ET

Just how dirty is the air you breathe?

The American Lung Association (ALA) has released their annual report, State of the Air 2011, highlighting which cities have the worst air for ozone pollution, short-term particle pollution, and year-long particle pollution. All of these pollutants present problems for the health of the people living near these regions (and sometimes, not near these regions).

This slideshow highlights the 11 cities (there were some ties) ranked in the SOTA 2011's list of "10 Cities Most Polluted by Year-Round Particle Pollution." According to the report, over 18.5 million people in the U.S. live in a region with unhealthy levels of year-round particle pollution.

From the report:

These people live in areas where chronic levels are regularly a threat to their health. Even when levels are fairly low, exposure to particles over time can increase risk of hospitalization for asthma, damage to the lungs and, significantly, increase the risk of premature death.

The ALA recently reported that particle pollution from power plants kills approximately 13,000 people per year.

Pollution hazards may be exacerbated for people who are part of an "at-risk" group, such as those with asthma, chronic lung disease, cardiovascular disease, or diabetes. The ALA has also found that people who live in poverty may face higher risk from air pollution. Click here for more information on the SOTA 2011 report, or visit the SOTA website.

#10. Modesto, CA
1 of 12
Total Population: 510,385
Under 18: 149,225
65 and Over: 53,538
Pediatric Asthma: 9,899
Adult Asthma: 28,322
Chronic Bronchitis: 15,267
Emphysema: 7,192
Cardiovascular Disease: 125,454
Diabetes: 32,878
Poverty: 85,583

(Flickr/Tom Hilton)
Total comments: 222 | Post a Comment
1 of 12
This Report
Everyone Knows That
Seriously?!

  • 1

  • 2

  • 3

  • 4

  • 5

  • 6

  • 7

  • 8

  • 9

  • 10
Top 5 Most Disturbing FInds
Users who voted on this slide
loading...

Notes on the SOTA 2011 statistics:

1. Cities are ranked using the highest weighted average for any county within that Combined or Metropolitan Statistical Area.
2. Total Population represents the at-risk populations for all counties within the respective Combined or Metropolitan Statistical Area.
3. Those 18 and under and 65 and over are vulnerable to PM2.5 and are, therefore, included. They should not be used as population denominators for disease estimates.
4. Pediatric asthma estimates are for those under 18 years of age and represent the estimated number of people who had asthma in 2009 based on state rates (BRFSS) applied to population estimates (U.S. Census).
5. Adult asthma estimates are for those 18 years and older and represent the estimated number of people who had asthma during 2009 based on state rates (BRFSS) applied to population estimates (U.S. Census).
6. Chronic bronchitis estimates are for adults 18 and over who had been diagnosed in 2009, based on national rates (NHIS) applied to population estimates (U.S. Census).
7. Emphysema estimates are for adults 18 and over who have been diagnosed within their lifetime, based on national rates (NHIS) applied to population estimates (U.S. Census).
8. Adding across rows does not produce valid estimates, e.g., summing pediatric and adult asthma and/or emphysema and chronic bronchitis.
9. CV disease estimates are based on National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) estimates of cardiovascular disease applied to population estimates (U.S. Census).
10. Diabetes estimates are for adults 18 and over who have been diagnosed within their lifetime, based on state rates (BRFSS) applied to population estimates (U.S. Census).

FOLLOW HUFFPOST GREEN