Air Toxics

A Closer Look at Air Toxics

Air toxics are a group of over 400 pollutants known or suspected to cause a number of health problems, including cancer and birth defects, as well as damage to lungs, and immune and nervous systems. In our region, the health risk from air toxics comes primarily from fine particles in diesel exhaust.


  • Fact Sheet on Air Toxics (PDF) - An overview of air toxics of greatest concern in our region, as well as actions the Clean Air Agency is taking to reduce air toxics.
  • 2010 Tacoma and Seattle Area Air Toxics Evaluation - Through a study funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency and the University of Washington measured the concentrations of toxic air pollutants in Tacoma and Seattle and identified the chief contributors.
  • EPA National-Scale Air Toxics Assessment - These documents summarize local results of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's national air toxics assessment (NATA), which models air toxics levels and health risk on a national level.
Air Toxic Graphs