Environment
Days with Good Air Quality


Days with Good Air Quality

What does this measure?

The percentage of days in a year that air quality was monitored in a geographical area and found to be good. This rating indicates air was healthy for sensitive groups, such as people with asthma, as well as the overall population. The Air Quality Index (AQI) summarizes in one measure the levels of ground-level ozone, particulate matter (such as soot), carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen oxide.

Why is this important?

Exposure to these pollutants can cause short-term health effects such as irritation to the eyes, nose and throat; coughing; sneezing; runny nose; and shortness of breath. Continued exposure can also worsen medical conditions such as asthma and heart disease.

How is our county performing?

In 2017, 79% of days with air quality measurements in Erie County were rated as good. This was the second highest percentage recorded since 2000 after 2016 (81%). It broke a consecutive year of improvement since 2013, when 53% of days were rated good for air quality.

Before the recent improvements, air quality ratings had fluctuated in Erie County. The worst year for air quality during this period was 2005, when only 42% of days were rated good for air quality. The average percentage of days with good air quality in the period between 2000 and 2017 was 60%.

How do we compare to similar counties?

Luzerne County, PA had a higher percentage (and total number) of days with good air quality in 2017 (97% or 354 days of good quality air ratings) than Erie County. Luzerne has had consistently higher air quality ratings than Erie since 2006. Stark County, OH had a smaller share (68%) of good quality air days in 2017 than Erie.

Notes about the data

Comparable national and state data is not available due to the quantity and location of EPA monitoring stations. Data for this indicator are expected to be released annually in July.

Days with Good Air Quality
200020012002200320042005200620072008200920102011201220132014201520162017
Erie County, PA59%45%46%48%52%42%60%60%62%72%61%60%59%53%63%77%81%79%
Luzerne County, PA57%48%55%53%58%50%86%83%86%97%89%95%90%93%95%90%92%97%
Stark County, OH53%55%55%58%66%58%57%53%67%53%40%46%48%67%77%74%73%68%
Broome County, NY61%65%66%68%

Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Notes: Data were not available for the state or for some counties because they do not have air quality monitoring stations.




Number of Days with Good Air Quality
200020012002200320042005200620072008200920102011201220132014201520162017
Erie County, PA217165169177190152220218228263222219216195225281295290
Luzerne County, PA208174201195212184314304316353326346329339345329336354
Stark County, OH193201202213242207192184225193145169176245282271267250
Broome County, NY62717319

Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Notes: Data were not available for the state or for some counties because they do not have air quality monitoring stations.




INDICATORS TREND | ERIE COUNTY
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Establishments Maintaining
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Employees Increasing
Tourism Spending Maintaining
Median Age Increasing
Population by Age Not Applicable
Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Total Population Decreasing
Foreign Born Population Increasing
Household Types Not Applicable
Average Household Size Maintaining
Single-Parent Families Increasing
Median Household Income Maintaining
Public Assistance Maintaining
Change in Average Salary Decreasing
Unemployment Rate Increasing
Unemployment Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Employment by Sector Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Increasing
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty by Education Level Not Applicable
Homeownership Rates Decreasing
Homeownership Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Housing Affordability for Homeowners Maintaining
Median Rent Maintaining
Student Performance in Grade 3 Reading Increasing
Student Performance in Grade 3 Math Increasing
High School Cohort Graduation Rate Maintaining
Per Student Spending Maintaining
Prekindergarten Participation Increasing
Education Level of Adults Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Air Quality Increasing
Water Quality Maintaining
Recycling Tons Per Capita Maintaining
Solid Waste Per Capita Maintaining
Vehicles by Fuel Type Not Applicable
Mortality Rate Decreasing
Death from Heart Disease Decreasing
Death from Cancer Decreasing
Death from Stroke Decreasing
Death from Chronic Lower Respiratory Disease Increasing
Hypertension Prevalance Increasing
Diabetes Prevalence Increasing
Asthma Increasing
People Without Healthcare Coverage Decreasing
People Without a Primary Care Physician Increasing
Routine Checkups Increasing
People Who Cannot Afford Healthcare Decreasing
Adults Who are Overweight or Obese Increasing
Children Who are Overweight or Obese Increasing
Teens Who are Overweight or Obese Increasing
Adult Smokers Decreasing
Physically Inactive Adults Decreasing
Binge Drinking Maintaining
Infant Mortality Decreasing
Low Birth Weight Babies Increasing
Live Births to Teen Mothers Decreasing
Non Smoking During Pregnancy Increasing
Early Prenatal Care Increasing