De Pere starts clean air initiative

De Pere asks citizens to take a number of steps for cleaner air
Published: Aug. 29, 2023 at 6:06 AM CDT
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DE PERE, Wis. (WBAY) - De Pere is sending a message to drivers to protect the air you breathe. The city just started a clean-air initiative through its Sustainability Commission.

As you head out the door, the city wants you to think about the importance of reducing how much your car idles. Think about this as you’re dropping off the kids at school and waiting to pick them up.

The push starts with schools because that’s where the commission has seen the most vehicles idling. Instead, shut off the engine. Only run the engine intermittently if the passenger area gets too hot or too cold.

The city says emissions from cars contain carcinogenic toxins that affect everyone but can be especially bad for people with asthma. It’s also not good for people with compromised immune systems.

The American Lung Association also wants to spread the same message, saying toxic air can affect students’ health, alertness, attention and test scores.

Parents can talk to their child’s school about some of this. Some advice from experts is to have teachers air out their classrooms or consider an air purifier.

The city commissioner says where we learn matters, and while air quality isn’t always top-of-mind for parents they hope to change that.