In partnership with the Santa Barbara County Air Pollution Control District (APCD) and other local partners, Santa Barbara MTD is offering a free 10-ride bus pass to the first 500 individuals who pledge to try an MTD bus in October. Find the pledge and sign-up at www.surveymonkey.com/r/freepasscleanerair.
The free MTD passes are funded through a Low-Carbon Transit Operations Program grant from Caltrans.
California Clean Air Day is a statewide program built on the idea that shared experiences unite people to action to improve local air quality and community health. On Oct. 2, Californians will take actions to clear the air and improve their own and their community’s health. More than 100,000 people participated in 2018; it is anticipated 10 times as many will participate in 2019.
MTD and APCD, together with Santa Barbara County Association of Governments (SBCAG) / Traffic Solutions, Santa Barbara County Public Health Department, and Sansum Clinic, urge Santa Barbara County residents to take three steps to participate in Clean Air Day.
1. Be aware of your air: Sign up to receive air-quality alerts issued by APCD and Santa Barbara County Public Health: www.ourair.org/subscribe.
• APCD provides hourly air-quality conditions and daily forecasts on its website: www.ourair.org/todays-air-quality/. For the most part, Santa Barbara County enjoys good-to-moderate air quality conditions. Sign up to receive alerts when air quality conditions turn unhealthy, such as during wildfires.
• Being up to date on hourly air-quality conditions will help you and your loved ones protect your health and plan activities accordingly. This is especially important for individuals with heart and lung conditions, seniors and children.
2. Protect your health: Learn more about air pollution and health at www.ourair.org/apcd/air-pollutants-and-health.
• Read about how ground-level ozone and particulate matter can affect your health.
• Knowledge is power; the more you understand about the harmful effects of air pollution, the more you can do to protect your health.
3. Pledge to try alternative transit in October: Try alternative transportation for free this month.
• Sign up to receive a free 10-ride pass to ride the Santa Barbara MTD, www.surveymonkey.com/r/freepasscleanerair.
• Sign up to receive a free one-time, round-trip pass to ride any of the routes of the Clean Air Express, run by SBCAG: www.trafficsolutions.org/cleanairday
• Walk or bike to work or school, as several Santa Barbara County schools are doing.
“Every day we make personal choices that contribute positively or negatively to our air quality and our climate,” said Hillary Blackerby, MTD’s planning and marketing manager. “If we each replaced one trip a week with a bus trip, it would reduce our collective carbon emissions and pollution significantly.”
Find more ideas to help improve air quality on the California Clean Air Day website, and take the pledge, visit www.CleanAirDay.org.
— Hillary Blackerby for MTD.