Air study may find problems

Published 10:51 am Friday, April 3, 2009

Some things transcend all demographics, economic status, ethnic backgrounds and other labels society place upon us. The need for clean air is one of those.

Recent studies have shown that air around at least three Lawrence County schools is considered among the worst in the country. An upcoming study will partially analyze this in a little more detail and hopefully will provide answers to all Lawrence Countians who need to know the air we breathe is safe.

A 2008 private, snapshot study of nearly 128,000 public and private schools throughout the U.S. placed Whitwell Elementary and Dawson-Bryant High and Middle schools among the lowest two percentiles of having the worst air.

Email newsletter signup

Whitwell was one of only seven schools in the state selected for new testing as part of a longer list of 62 priority schools in 22 states where the EPA has identified potential health concerns from toxic air pollutants.

We also hope to see further examination of what industries have put these pollutants into the air and identify things that can be done to eliminate this problem and improve the air quality in Lawrence County and the entire Tri-State.

Ultimately, any industry that contributes to this pollution must be held accountable and contribute financially toward correcting it.

We are happy that the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency is taking a hard look at air quality in the nation, the state and, of course, Lawrence County.

Hopefully, this will be the first step toward determining if any health concerns exist and then finding ways to correct those concerns.

Lawrence County’s residents — and Lawrence County’s children — deserve to be able to breathe easy when it comes to knowing the air is clean.