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San Diego is cleaning its air the fastest in the nation

San Diego County is cleaning up its air faster than any other county in the nation over the past 15 years. KPBS reporter Beth Ford Roth has the details.

Between the years of 19-90 and 2004, San Diego County went from 96 days of exceeding federal smog standards, to eight days. County Supervisor Ron Roberts credits a combination of local and state pollution reduction programs for the decline. He says that happened despite the region's tremendous growth.

Roberts: In the early 90s I can remember there was a school of thought that said we have to restrict the number of people who are moving here, we have to put Draconian rules in place, and we've found ways to do this, without making people suffer.

Air quality officials credit stricter state regulations for the auto industry for much of San Diego's improvement. They say regulations that control power plant emissions are also a big factor. Beth Ford Roth, KPBS News.

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