The Valley’s summertime air is dangerous at times — 91 ozone violations and counting this year. And you’re paying a $29 million annual fine for failing to clean it up faster.
So are you any better off now than you were 10 years ago?
Yes, say government watchdog agencies. Not really, say environmentalists, health advocates and community activist groups.
More than 40% of a key ozone-making gas — NOx — is gone now. Also gone are terrible years like 2002 when smog sieges created a lung-searing 158 violations.
In 2002, environmental lawsuits were making headlines and building a fever for change. That year, The Fresno Bee published a 24-page section, “Last Gasp,” focused on air quality.
Now as this ozone season winds down, the air here still is not healthy.