For the past three days Utah cities have been at the top of the list for the worst air in the country. Inversions are nothing new for the state, but this year it has reached a new level.
According to Utah's Division of Air Quality, this year's inversions are hitting Utah harder and more frequently than they have in years. In 2002, Salt Lake City had six air quality alert days. So far this winter there have been 19.
The group of doctors have signed a letter asking the state "To take emergency action to address it, and do everything possible to immediately reduce sources of air pollution."
The letter outlines seven requests:
1. Reduce freeway speed limits to 55 mph which improves fuel efficiency and reduces pollution.
2. Make all means of mass transit free for the remainder of the winter season and ask the legislature to make up the revenue loss to the UTA.
3. Require the largest industrial pollution sources.
4. Require a shut down of incinerator related businesses.
5. Prohibit wood burning period.
6. Launch public service announcements from state and local officials, including the governor, acknowledging the emergency and asking for businesses to accommodate Telecommuting where possible and reduce employee driving.
7. We advise the public to avoid any exercise outdoors, and check with their own physicians about adopting an anti-inflammatory regimen.