Air Pollution, Health Outcomes and Equity

Myron Arnowitt | State Director for Pennsylvania, Clean Water Action

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Regulation of outdoor (ambient) air quality through the federal Clean Air Act has resulted in large public health benefits, addressing significant threats to respiratory and cardiovascular health.  However, as air quality has improved in the U.S., benefits have not been equitable with lower income and communities of color continuing to suffer from disproportionate impacts of air pollution exposure.  Community efforts to address poor air quality in Clairton, PA will be discussed as a case study of an environmental justice community’s experience with air pollution, health, and equity.

Speaker Bios and Abstracts

About the Speaker

Myron Arnowitt is currently Pennsylvania State Director for Clean Water Action.  He has worked for 30 years as a community organizer for a variety of neighborhood, environmental, and social justice organizations in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and Chester, PA.  Locally, he has worked with several communities facing significant air quality problems in southwest Pennsylvania, including helping residents establish a community air monitoring program, and distributing home air filters to address air quality for vulnerable residents. He has worked with residents to address local drinking water contamination from a variety of sources. In addition, Mr. Arnowitt has worked with several Pennsylvania school districts, including the Pittsburgh School District in developing Integrated Pest Management policies to promote least toxic alternatives to chemical pesticide applications. He currently serves on the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection’s Water Resources Advisory Committee.