Air Quality

Good air quality is important for quality of life and is also directly related to cardiovascular, respiratory disease and cancers. Laws to protect healthy indoor air can help improve the air people breathe. While smoking is not the only contributor to air quality, it has been proven to be dangerous to workers, patrons, or anyone exposed to secondhand smoke on a regular basis.

As of January 2019, 17 states have smoke-free air laws that cover workplaces, restaurants, bars, and gambling establishments. This represents no change from the prior reporting in 2016. As the number of states with comprehensive smoke-free air laws increases, more states would have a key policy in place to support cleaner, healthier air for all.

SOURCE: Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights, 2019

  • NUMBER OF VENUES COVERED BY AIR QUALITY LAWS COUNTED BY STATE

  • STATES WITH SMOKE-FREE AIR LAWS ACROSS ALL VENUES, IN 2019

Climage Adaptation and Mitigation

Climate change is connected to changes in weather patterns, agriculture and food systems, and has a significant impact on health, including respiratory and cardiovascular disease, injuries and premature deaths related to extreme weather events, changes in the prevalence and geographical distribution of food- and water-borne illnesses and other infectious diseases, and threats to mental health. Climate Action Plans (CAPs) outline a set of strategies within specific environmental policy proposals and programmatic initiatives, indicating that state agencies are working together to improve health. By establishing standards for air quality, targets for emissions, or requirements for housing development, CAPs indicate that states are engaging in cross-sector collaborations that benefit health.

As of 2018, according to an inventory by the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, 34 states and the District of Columbia have a Climate Action Plan in place (total, 35). This represents no change from what was reported in 2015. An increase in the number of states adopting CAPs would indicate that states are not only engaging multiple sectors, but also prioritizing their own climate issues and public health.

SOURCE: Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, 2018

  • States With Climate Change Action Plans, in 2018