Breathing easier in Cleveland: How Tighter Standards Could Change the City’s Air Quality Issues

This article provided by Eye on Ohio, the nonprofit, nonpartisan Ohio Center for Journalism. Please join Eye on Ohio's free mailing list as this helps provide more public service reporting to the community. By Christopher Johnston

While running for Cleveland City Council Ward 3 seat last year, Ayat Amin spent a lot of time canvassing neighborhoods and talking to residents about environmental issues. 

“What came up time and again in our conversations that really resonated with people was air quality,” she said. “Specifically there were a lot of residents who felt they were experiencing poor air quality but didn’t know what to do about it.”

When she inquired about signs of air pollution in their neighborhood, residents told her they would have to wipe soot off of their outdoor plants or off their houses. In Ohio City, residents of Lakeview Terrace, one of the oldest public housing complexes in the U.S., complained of particles in the air from the roughly 1,000 trucks passing through, spewing exhaust and stirring up dust that landed on their cars, homes and in the air they breathed every day.