Lung Association says St. Louis air among nation's worst

St. Louis – St. Louis has ranked seventh on a list of the nation's most-polluted metropolitan areas.

The American Lung Association's "State of the Air" report released Thursday lists Los Angeles as number one in all-around pollution with four other California cities in the top five.

The Lung Association says St. Louis's air is better than the air in Washington D.C., but worse than Birmingham, Alabama's.

The report is based on air quality measurements reported to the Environmental Protection Agency by state and local agencies between 2004 and 2006.

Meanwhile the American Bottom Conservancy and Sierra Club have reached an agreement with a coal company and a steel company that would limit pollution from a new coke plant at U.S. Steel's facility in Granite City, Ill.

The environmental groups say the agreement will regulate fine particulate pollution and provide $5 million to pay for pollution reduction projects.

The groups say industry is important to the Metro East, but the resulting pollution harms the entire St. Louis region.