It was a beautiful day in Pittsburgh on March 2, but I was forced to work out on my stationary bike instead of running in the park because we had yet another day when the Air Quality Index (AQI) was approaching Orange 89 at the moment that I was prepared to go out the door.
Unfortunately, I have had to add the ritual of checking AQI to what now seems to be a quaint set of previous considerations – rain, snow and ice. It is shocking how many times our region is the #1 worst place for air quality in America; for the “City of Champions,” that is not a league which we should want to be leading!
There are so many people who don't even know what elevated AQI means to their health, and the institutions in Pittsburgh that could be educating people about this are content to sit back. In the case of UPMC and AHN, that means treatment, rather than advocating for prevention. In the case of our County Executive, that means a failure to advocate for a healthier vision for our future.
We need to keep beating this drum, otherwise, it is wishful thinking to believe that things will change.
Register now for our next Virtual Resident-led Town Hall, scheduled for Tuesday, April 5 at 6 p.m., at which time we will be hearing from steelworkers who recently authored this excellent OpEdwhich appeared in the PG on Feb. 24. The PG limits the number of signatories to two, but rest assured that there were several more who were involved.
We have a growing Town Hall constituency, now numbering 1,000. Together we can double and triple that number, thus creating enough pressure to make a difference.