Sections of northeast Kansas City and downtown have high levels of air pollution, and some believe the dirty air is making them sick.
High levels of sulphur dioxide is a concern.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Missouri Department of Natural Resources say a triangular section from Interstate 435 at the Missouri River to Interstate 70 and the Kansas border has air that doesn't meet federal safety standards.
"This is inappropriate for a city of this sophistication to have that health hazard continue to exist," the Sierra Club's James Turner said.
He blames coal-burning factories.
The EPA says a number of factors are at play.
Turner wants officials to do more to clean up the dirty air.
"We feel they should proceed expeditiously on this matter because while they are talking about it people are still getting (sulphur dioxide) in their lungs and it's really a problem," he said.
Some residents believe the poor air quality is exacerbating their health issues, including Sarah Campbell who has adult onset asthma and other health issues.
"I rarely open my windows in my apartment. I have air filters," said Campbell who lives at 9th Street and Walnut Avenue. "I have to be careful to watch the weather report on what days it's safe to go outside during the day. I often have to come home and give myself breathing treatments afterward."
Doctors that attended a Sierra Club meeting this week said that Kansas City does have a large population of residents with asthmatic and respiratory patients that are treated in area emergency rooms.
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