Other Clean Air Programs
Partners for Clean Air
Partners for Clean Air is a coalition of approximately 285 Chicago area
businesses, government agencies, and environmental groups that promote
voluntary actions to improve air quality. Formed in 1995, the primary
mission of the Partnership is to make sure regional air quality never
gets above the national health-based standard for ozone pollution.
Since the Partnership was formed, the total number of days the Chicago
region’s air exceeded the health standard has decreased every
year. Partners for Clean Air disseminates updates on Ozone Action Days.
Partners for Clean Air predict Ozone Action Days with the help of meteorologists
who constantly monitor summer air quality. This is the only time the
Chicago area is in danger of violating the national ozone standard because
ozone forms when winds are calm, skies are sunny, and temperatures are
high. If these conditions are predicted for the next day, an Ozone Action
Day is called and the Partners move into action.
First the media is notified along with all the Partners. The media lets
the public know about the Ozone Action Day via television, radio, and
newspapers, and asks that people immediately take steps to reduce emissions
that cause ozone. Voluntary actions include reducing driving and gas-powered
lawn mowing, and refraining from refueling cards until after sundown.
In addition, each partner puts its own specific voluntary “action
plans” into place. Some Partners postpone or cut back on their
manufacturing process for the day, some defer lawn mowing, some encourage
carpooling, and some provide lunches so employees don’t have to
drive during the day.
Information requests and membership inquiries should be directed to
the Illinois EPA at (847) 294-4021.
The Clean Cities program promotes the use of alternative fuels and alternative
fuel vehicles (AFVs). Because approximately half of the Chicago area’s
air pollution comes from motor vehicles, the widespread use of alternative
fuels, in place of gasoline, hold promise for improving our air.
Sponsored in over 60 cities nationwide by the US Department of Energy,
Clean Cities provides a framework for increasing the percentage of AFVs
in urban areas. Cities form an alliance with local industries and work
to create refueling infrastructure, build market demand, and transfer
and improve technology for AFVs.