SoCal Smog is Rising While Emissions Decline. Why?

For the second straight year, Southern California has seen an increase in smog. The upsurge follows years of improvement in SoCal’s smog conditions and comes despite a steady decline in the state’s emissions.

So what gives?

Southern California regulators are having a hard time explaining the inconsistency, particularly in light of the state’s high environmental standards. They’re looking at two key possibilities: that hotter temperatures are trapping pollution near the ground or that the models showing a decline in emissions are somehow wrong.

The problem isn’t entirely limited to the Southland. The San Joaquin Valley has also seen an increase in bad air quality days, according to data from the state Air Resources Board.


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