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  • Actions for Healthy Air

    Treat the air as if our lives depend on it. Because they do.

    Being that driving gasoline and diesel powered motor vehicles causes about half the air pollution in Pima County, it makes sense to simply drive less and drive more fuel-efficiently. Suggestions to consider:

    ride a bike

    Drive Less:

    Drive Smarter:

    • Accelerate and drive smoothly
    • Check and change air filter regularly
    • Drive slower on dirt roads, or avoid them when possible
    • Idle Less for Healthy Air 
    • Keep tires properly inflated
    • When in the market for a new (or new to you) vehicle, choose a more fuel-efficient one
    • Refueling tips:
      • During summertime, refill tank in the evening to avoid sunlight “baking” fumes into ozone pollution
      • Stop at the click to avoid spillage
      • Secure gas cap tightly

    At Home:

    Activities of daily living also contribute to air pollution, and there's plenty we can do to improve air quality and save money on utility bills, too.

    • Conserve electricity:
      • Conduct an energy audit to see where you could save the most
      • Turn lights, TVs and computers off when not in use
      • Use energy efficient light bulbs and appliances
      • Set thermostat a little cooler in the winter and warmer in the summer
      • Use an automatic thermostat with timers that control the temperature, especially helpful when no one is home and at night
      • Use ceiling or floor fans to help you feel cooler in warmer months
      • Clean and inspect air conditioner and heater annually
      • Change or clean air conditioning and furnace filters monthly or as needed
      • Set the temperature of the refrigerator between 38ºF and 42ºF
      • Open curtains or blinds to let daylight in or close them to keep the heat out, depending on your needs
      • Close air supply registers, window shades and doors to unused rooms
      • Use appliances that heat your kitchen the least on hot days
      • Insulate windows and weather strip doors
      • Put an insulating blanket on the hot water heater
      • Use a clothes line instead of clothes dryer
      • Wash clothes using cold water
      • Avoid or reduce use of hair dryers, curling irons and flat irons
    • While enjoying fires in your fireplace, fire pit or bar-be-cues:
      • Burn seasoned hard wood (like oak or mesquite) instead of soft wood (like pine)
      • Have smaller or less frequent fires
      • Avoid using lighter fluid
      • Use a charcoal chimney to heat briquettes
    • Use household products wisely, including: cleaners, pesticides, paint products, pool chemicals, medicines, and others
      • Use chemicals per directions and seal shut when storing 
      • Look for non-toxic substitutes
      • Recycle used automotive fluids and other household chemicals
    • Use electric or manual lawn and garden equipment instead of gasoline-powered equipment
    • Conserve water – it takes energy to pump water from the Colorado River to Tucson. A lot of energy. Saving water is great in itself, and it's even greater when it conserves energy, too:
      • Take short showers (also reduces energy to heat water)
      • Install a low-flow shower head
      • Turn off faucet when brushing teeth
      • Use a water displacement device in the toilet tank or install low-flow toilets
      • Use dishwasher and washing machines with full loads
      • Save rainwater for landscaping needs
      • Water lawns only during the cooler part of the day
      • Use a broom instead of a hose to clean driveways, patios and walkways
    • Avoid neighborhood fireworks and enjoy community-sponsored celebrations instead

    Discover More:

    View and share Clean Air Program Public Service Announcements
    Activities and Info for Kids
    Benefits of Driving Less 
    Real-time Air Quality Info from PDEQ Monitors
    Schedule a presentation
    Teacher Resources
    Trees and Air Quality
    Understand more about Pima County Air Quality Rules and Regulations
    View Reports, Brochures, Posters and Publications
    Follow UsShare this page

    Department of Environmental Quality

    33 N. Stone Ave., Suite 700
    Tucson, AZ 85701

    Phone: (520) 724-7400
    Fax: (520) 838-7432

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