Californians urged to take action for the environment at 5th Annual California Clean Air Day

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) — Wednesday marks the 5th annual California Clean Air Day, where Californians are encouraged to do at least one thing to help clear the air, such as taking public transportation.

This stems from the fact that seven of the top 10 most ozone-polluted cities are located in the Golden State.

“Honestly, I really like taking the ferry, there are a lot of great views,” said Anna Close, a passenger on the San Francisco Bay Ferry.

The San Francisco Bay Ferry is offering free ferry rides all day Wednesday, among several other transit agencies, for Clean Air Day.

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With gas prices soaring and traffic jamming, Close opted to trade in his car for a ferry ride to town.

“It’s great. Commuting can be tough, so having that incentive is really nice,” she said.

Clean Air Day, organized by the Coalition for Clean Air, is based on the idea that shared experiences unite people with action to improve the health of our community, and the goal is to create new habits to clean the air in every community.

“We can always do more, take public transit, cycle, walk to places, and so there’s a lot more we could still do,” said Lorena Castillo, co-executive director of Groundwork Richmond. .

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In Richmond, it starts with going green.

“We just know that here in Richmond there is a lack of canopy and that trees are so beneficial to your health and well-being, so we are just trying to plant as many trees as possible in Richmond,” said Castillo said.

Environmental justice nonprofit, Groundwork Richmond, set up shop outside Richmond City Hall on Wednesday handing out free seeds for magnolias, enrolling people in their Adopt-a -Tree and encouraging everyone to help plant 74 trees at JFK Park on October 15th.

“A tree can make a huge difference in reducing the carbon footprint,” Castillo said.

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That’s why the Coalition for Clean Air is asking everyone to take the “Clean Air Pledge”, as an individual or organization, to do at least one of three things to clean the air:

  • Reduce vehicle emissions leaving your car at home and taking public transport.
  • Go green by planting something or starting to compost your food.
  • To change things like your air filter or gas-powered garden tools.

For context, the Coalition for Clean Air is the same group that came up with the original idea for the state’s Smog Check program on gas-powered cars in the 1980s and more recently they also helped pass legislation to put one million electric cars on the road by 2025.

You can take the Clean Air Pledge by clicking here.

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