Minneapolis Health Department

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Air Quality

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Why This Is Important

Poor air quality contributes to health problems, such as asthma, lung disease and heart disease. Most air pollution comes from the use of fossil fuels, especially by cars and trucks. Air pollution also causes damage to our environment, harming lake ecosystems, trees and plants, and our climate.

What's Being Done

Minneapolis has set targets to reduce moderately unhealthy days in the city to fewer than 35 per year by 2015, and to reduce all monitored air toxins to levels within state health guidelines by 2015.

The City is working to achieve these targets by "greening" its own government services and developing policies and best practices that encourage the community to do its own part. Key efforts to improve air quality include:

  • Reducing the City's fleet of vehicles while adding 238 clean-burning E85, 50 hybrid-electric and two all-electric vehicles and retrofitting 10 heavy trucks with clean air technologies.
  • Launching neighborhood-based inspections to reduce inspector vehicle trips.
  • Encouraging City employees to walk, bike and take transit to work.
  • Approving an anti-idling law that limits the time cars and trucks can sit idling.
  • Removing "No Turn on Red" signs at numerous intersections to reduce idling times.
  • Updating zoning standards to promote higher density and increased use of transit along light-rail lines.

About This Measure

Data for Minneapolis-only air quality do not exist; however there is an Air Quality Index for the metropolitan area. Air Quality Index information is from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.

Last updated Feb 23, 2012



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