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Report | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

Cutting through the Smoke

Allegheny County has a long legacy of industrial air pollution. But while Pittsburgh is not the “Smoky City” of generations past, industrial air pollution still inflicts immense damage on the health of Allegheny County residents.

The Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) is primarily responsible for protecting the people of Allegheny County from health-threatening air pollution. ACHD has been delegated authority to enforce the provisions of the federal Clean Air Act as well as local air pollution laws.

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News Release | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

PennEnvironment report highlights Clean Air Act enforcement challenges in Pittsburgh

A new study by PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center and Frontier Group documents how decades of poor enforcement of air quality rules by the Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) enabled industrial facilities to pollute the region’s air. The report, entitled Cutting Through the Smoke, found that ACHD has enabled pollution through slow permitting and weak enforcement. The report, coming on the heels of the departure of ACHD’s Director, makes recommendations for how the new Director can improve enforcement techniques and in turn better protect residents from dangerous air pollution.

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Report | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

Safe for Swimming?

The Clean Water Act, adopted in 1972 with overwhelming bi-partisan support, had the farsighted and righteous goal of making all our waterways safe for swimming. Yet 46 years later, all too often, Americans visiting their favorite beach are met by an advisory warning that the water is unsafe for swimming. Even worse, in recent years millions of Americans have been sickened by swimming in contaminated water.

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News Release | PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center

Beach Alert: Swimming in Pennsylvania’s polluted waters can make you sick

[Erie, PA] – With summer in full swing, Pennsylvania beachgoers should beware: It might not be safe to go in the water. Last year, 27 beaches across the state had water pollution levels that put swimmers at risk of getting sick on at least one occasion last year, according to a new report by the PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center. The study, Safe for Swimming?, looked at fecal bacteria levels at a total of 28 beaches across the state.

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