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Old 05-23-2007, 11:28 AM
 
Location: Somewhere along the path to where I'd like to be.
2,181 posts, read 3,801,445 times
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I'm considering the Salt Lake City metro area for a possible move in the future, and I've read that it has some pollution problems during the summer, because the mountains don't allow the winds to blow it away from the city. Is this true?
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Old 05-23-2007, 03:03 PM
 
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To correct you a bit, we actually have horrible pollution problems in the WINTER. In the Salt Lake Valley you are surrounded my mountains on all sides. It is essentially a bowl. In the winter months cold air is trapped in the valley by warm air at higher altitudes. The air pollution can't move up and out because of this. It is called inversion. I call it yellow-grey gunk and it can really be depressing for weeks in winter. You can actually drive up Parley's Canyon on your way to Park City and look down at the valley and see the line where the pollution is stuck. Everyone in Salt Lake County loves it when it snows because it will clear the inversion and you will be able to see the majesty of those blue snow-capped mountains and entire valley from mountain range to mountain range without the grey haze. It is a very beautiful area. However, when it doesn't snow air pollution builds and builds. Air pollution levels in the Salt Lake Valley have been listed as the worst in the nation during the winter months. So it is a very valid health concern. In the Salt Lake Metro Area, where you may be looking, you will definitely notice a grey haze during the winter months. If you are really concerned about air pollution then my advice is to go up in altitude (Park City, Heber ect.) and if you are concerned with ground and water pollution stay away from the valley's west bench because Utah Copper/Kennecott Copper (the world's largest open-pit copper mine) has contaminated much of this area. I don't want to make it look like Salt Lake is a horrible place to live, it isn't. I love the Salt Lake Valley and people and think that it is a wonderful place to live for many reasons. There is a strong economy, young population, good health care availability, a housing boom, recreational activities abound, and it is extremely family friendly, but there are some drawbacks as well that I think anyone considering taking residence should be advised of. Pollution levels from cars and industry are some of the hightest in the nation. (scorecard.org use zip code 84103 for downtown). It has the country's highest misuse of some prescription drugs (meridianmagazine.com "The hidden addiction to prescription drugs" by Darla Isackson). The Salt Lake County government has failed in protecting home buyers from meth-contaminated homes so it is very important to do research on existing homes. (ksl.com "Former Meth houses declaired safe may not be"). I think that it is important to really research the area in which you are considering moving into, so I'm giving you as much information as I can. I hope that it is helpful to you.
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Old 05-23-2007, 06:40 PM
 
Location: Somewhere along the path to where I'd like to be.
2,181 posts, read 3,801,445 times
Reputation: 789
^Yes, I very much appreciate the information. Thank you. To be honest, I just assumed the pollution problem was prevalent during the Summer, because that's when it is generally a problem in many areas. For example, SW Ohio is under a smog alert for the next several days, precisely because of the warm temps we've been experiencing. (I can't stand Summer temps in Spring. Blech!)

However, if the problem occurs in Winter in Salt Lake, I might actually be able to handle that better. I don't generally get out and about when it's cold. But in Summer, I like to hike around a lot and take landscape photos.

I'll definitely do some more research on the area before I make my final decision. Ultimately, I want to feel at home wherever I go, and I want it to be that way for a great number of years to come.
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Old 06-01-2007, 06:06 AM
 
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
7,728 posts, read 8,897,873 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WCRob View Post
I'm considering the Salt Lake City metro area for a possible move in the future, and I've read that it has some pollution problems during the summer, because the mountains don't allow the winds to blow it away from the city. Is this true?
There is some pollution but it is more of a problem during an inversion.
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Old 07-10-2008, 04:54 PM
 
3 posts, read 11,842 times
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If you have asthma SLC has become a bad place to live. They have an F grade on Ozone and a D for short term particle pollution and are listed 37th in the top 100 cities that are bad for asthmatics. My husband has no problems with inversions here but the air in summer and winter kills me sporadically. Even after a rain, there is no fresh clean smell as in other places.
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Old 07-10-2008, 05:57 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
16,477 posts, read 31,244,927 times
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ozone levels in aummer cause red alert days - old, young, and infirm stay inside!
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Old 07-30-2008, 10:43 AM
 
Location: DEN-CO
360 posts, read 722,134 times
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January 2004- The sun didn't shine on the valley floor all month long. There was a large snowstorm after Christmas that year, and with the inverstion season, there was no relief, no sun, no warmth, it was the worst I had ever experienced. I took a plane out to Seattle to see some sun, even then when you climbed out at a bit over 7000' there was blue skies and sun.
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Old 07-30-2008, 07:36 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
16,477 posts, read 31,244,927 times
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We have had quite a few red alert days this summer, due to high ozone levels. We also get the smoke from the West Coast wildfires.
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Old 07-31-2008, 01:03 AM
 
Location: East Millcreek
550 posts, read 1,353,397 times
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The sun didn't shine? Whoa, you make it sound apocalyptic! The sun did shine of course, the pollution was just horrible. Don't think that the pollution blocks the sun; otherwise, the valley would be much less populated
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Old 07-31-2008, 10:37 AM
 
Location: DEN-CO
360 posts, read 722,134 times
Reputation: 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lmejh View Post
The sun didn't shine? Whoa, you make it sound apocalyptic! The sun did shine of course, the pollution was just horrible. Don't think that the pollution blocks the sun; otherwise, the valley would be much less populated
I disagree, I was here. January 2004, the valley was socked in for a month, look it up in atmospheric records, or with NOAA or something. In fact in precipitated every day for about a month, It's called hoarfrost. Look that one up too, it happens during severe inversions, of which this was the worst I've experienced. And no, the fog, smog, etc., whatever it was, completely blocked the skies for the month. It was just aweful. I'm not trying to be apocalyptic, just explaining what I've witnessed, but if you look at recent views in Beijing you will see what it was like, a gray, murky sky.
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