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The air that we breathe ranks in Top 10 of unhealthy levels of pollution

The American Lung Association says 125 million people live in areas of the country with unhealthy levels of air pollution. (Graphic provided)

The American Lung Association says 125 million people live in areas of the country with unhealthy levels of air pollution.

One of the 10 worst is the Las Vegas valley.

The sky above Bakersfield, California may look beautiful, but the polluted air sends it and another west coast city — Los Angeles — to the top of the list of unhealthiest places to breathe in the U.S., according to the latest state of the air report from the American Lung Association.

"This is our 18th annual report, so we've seen a lot of improvements,” said ALA’s Janice Nolen. “But we're also seeing some trends that are scary."

The biggest spikes in particle pollution were seen in Western states — including Nevada.

The Las Vegas valley ranked in the top 50 in all 3 categories for most polluted cities — including in the top 10 for high levels of ozone.

Researchers say the higher levels are likely due to nearby wildfires, along with factories and vehicles.

Pollutants can cause severe asthma attacks — particularly in vulnerable children. And that's not all.

"Particle pollution is especially risky for cardiovascular harm, like heart disease, stroke,” Nolen said. “It also is greatly risky for people with diabetes and it causes lung cancer."

Most of the cleanest air cities were on the East Coast. The only western U.S. city that ranked high for clean air was Honolulu.

You can take a closer look at Nevada's State of the Air Report ranking by clicking here.

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