California Preschools Are In The Path Of Pollution05:56
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An oil refinery and highway are visible over the fence of a Long Beach child care center. KPCC reporters Deepa Fernandes and Sarah Monte investigated the effect of air pollution on early childhood development by taking air quality readings outside of child care centers located in Los Angeles County. (Blaine Ohigashi/KPCC)
An oil refinery and highway are visible over the fence of a Long Beach child care center. KPCC reporters Deepa Fernandes and Sarah Monte investigated the effect of air pollution on early childhood development by taking air quality readings outside of child care centers located in Los Angeles County. (Blaine Ohigashi/KPCC)
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The 2016 "State of the Air" report from the American Lung Association, released Wednesday, finds that more than 50 percent of Americans live in counties with unhealthy levels of air pollution. The worst cities for short-term particle pollution are mostly in California, including the state's largest city - Los Angeles.

In an effort to reduce the risk for young people, California banned public schools from being built within 500 feet of busy freeways, back in 2003. But the law doesn’t apply to facilities where the littlest kids spend their days: daycare centers and preschools. Deepa Fernandes from KPCC reports.

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This segment aired on April 20, 2016.

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