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Air Pollution in Jerusalem Down 99% – How Did They Do It?

Posted on October 14, 2014
by Wendy Stackhouse

A recent World Health Organization study reported that Israel’s air quality is remarkably poor. In fact they ranked 22nd worst for air pollution out of the 1600 countries measured.

With so many beloved and important sites in Israel, one would hope that they would do a better job protecting their infrastructure if not their population. But in common with many other small countries with high population density, Israel has a problem with emissions and particles.

Israel tied with Chile and Sri Lanka for particulate matter.

Last week, however, during the Yom Kippur holiday, Jerusalem’s air pollution was down an amazing 99%! How did they do it?

No traffic.

Everyone stayed home.

The Environmental Protection Ministry put it best:

“The great improvement in air quality on this day is indicative of the impact of transportation as the main source of air pollution in big cities.” Jerusalem Post

What do you think would happen in the US if, instead of jumping in our cars on Thanksgiving, we stayed home? Thanksgiving is the biggest travel day of the year here and we all want to see family, but I wonder what would happen if we decided to stay local? How much of a difference would it make to our air quality?

We usually stay home for Thanksgiving, but this year we will be taking the train down to Orange County. How far will you be going and how much pollution will you produce? Worth a thought!

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