The issue of air quality and ground-level ozone pollution may seem vast and overwhelming, impossible for one person or business to affect. But simple measures have been proven in other communities to produce results. Please consider ideas on this page and encourage others to do the same — because you CAN make a difference.
What can individuals do?
Stay informed! Monitor the local media or this site to find out the projected ozone level each day. On days when high ozone levels are expected, take these extra steps to reduce pollution:
- Share a ride to work or use public transportation
- Telecommute if possible
- Combine errands and reduce trips
- Walk when possible
- Avoid excessive idling of your automobile
- Refuel your car in the evening when it is cooler
- Don’t top off your tank
- Replace your vehicle’s air filter
- Conserve electricity and set air conditioners no lower than 78 degrees
- Defer lawn and gardening chores that use gasoline-powered equipment or wait until evening
- Look for the Energy Star label when buying home or office equipment
- Follow gasoline refueling instructions for efficient vapor recovery, being careful not to spill fuel and always tightening your gas cap securely
- Consider purchasing portable gasoline containers labeled “spill-proof”
- Keep car, boat and other engines properly tuned
- Be sure your car tires are properly inflated
- Avoid burning leaves, trash and other materials
What can businesses do?
- Create a rideshare program for employees – ask Upstate Forever how!
- Create a telecommute program for employees
- Some companies have adjusted production schedules to use high-powered equipment only in the early morning
- Switch to lower wattage lighting
- Reduce the actual number of lights in offices
- Program air conditioners not to run during non-work hours
- Apply for a Clean Diesel Program grant from the EPA