This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2011, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Now is the time for the Wasatch Front community to come together to improve our poor air quality. Since the beginning of January, the Salt Lake Valley has far exceeded the National Ambient Air Quality Safety Standards.

We have experienced two weeks of very high fine particulate matter air pollution with PM 2.5 levels approaching 100.

Poor air quality affects the health of us all, young and old, strong and weak, conservative and liberal. Many have a cough or a runny nose. Asthma is acting up as we wheeze our way to work or school. Arteries are clogging as we experience headaches and chest pain. No one is exempt.

If you are contributing to air pollution through automobile use or industrial production, find a way to curtail your activity. Reduce truck and auto use by carpooling, trip-chaining, walking or biking, or saving your trip for another day.

Profitable large industrial facilities like Rio Tinto, Chevron or Stericycle should prioritize community health over corporate profits by dramatically reducing production until weather patterns improve.

We are all in this together. Please be sure that you are a part of the solution to stop these deadly inversions.

Courtney Henley, M.D.

Salt Lake City

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