The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is responsible for setting National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for pollutants considered harmful to public health and the environment. Currently there are six principal NAAQS pollutants; they are often called criteria pollutants.
Of those six, ground-level ozone and particle pollution pose the most widespread health threats. However, they all have the potential to cause damage to human health and the environment. DHEC's Bureau of Air Quality maintains a monitoring network for all criteria pollutants and provides the monitoring information to the public and the EPHT program.
DHEC Air Pollution Reduction Strategies
Breathe Better (B2)
B2 (Breathe Better) is an anti-idling/clean air campaign designed to help protect public health on school and business campuses by reducing harmful vehicle emissions. Students, faculty, staff, and local community partners work together to provide solutions.
Spare the Air Awards
These awards recognize environmental leaders (i.e., companies, community partners, and individuals) committed to promoting and practicing air quality strategies and environmental practices to improve air quality in South Carolina.
Vehicles contribute substantially to air pollution and can have negative impacts on human health and the environment. This effort teaches you how you can help reduce vehicle miles traveled (VMT) and mobile source emissions to improve air quality.
Protect you and your family and do your part to help reduce ground-level ozone.
- Know the ground-level ozone forecast.
- Limit exercise and outdoor work and activities on high-level ozone days.
- Drive less.
- Shop by internet during ozone season.
- Telecommute or work flex hours.
Protect you and your family and do your part to help reduce particulate matter.
- Avoid dusty and smoky areas.
- Don't exercise near busy roads.
- Reduce energy usage to reduce local air pollutions and save money.
- Mulch or compost leaves and yard waste instead of burning it.
- Use battery-powered lawn and garden equipment.
- South Carolina Ground-level Ozone Forecast
- How is Ozone Formed?
- Ground- Level Ozone-Effects on Human Health and the Environment
- What is Particulate Matter?
- BAQ Monitoring Network
- Learn Before You Burn Brochure
- EPA Ground-level Ozone
- EPA Particulate Matter
- EPA Air Emissions Data
- AirNow Air Quality Index (AQI)