October 2, 2009
Virginia is earning accolades for its quality of air. Governor Tim Kaine announced significant improvements in Virginia’s air quality during the past decade.
Kaine says the Commonwealth has made great strides to improve air quality by launching pollution reduction initiatives.
The number of poor air quality days in Virginia declined from 76 in 1999 to three in 2009, according to the most recent data from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). Summer 2009 had the fewest number of days on record that did not meet air quality standards. There were only three days with poor air quality in Northern Virginia, and zero days in Richmond and Hampton Roads.
The downward trend in Virginia occurred in all parts of the state that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has designated as not meeting air quality standards.
The weather also factored into the overall improvement in Virginia’s air quality. Ozone pollution occurs most often in hot weather with stagnant air conditions, so the relatively mild temperatures in Virginia this summer helped make 2009 a record year for good air quality.