State of the Air: NEW HAMPSHIRE

Rebecca WhitleyContact field organizer Rebecca “Becky” Whitley at to learn more or volunteer.

Becky lives in Hopkinton, New Hampshire with her husband and their young son. She loves spending time exploring New Hampshire’s outdoors with her family and friends. Becky has always been committed to social justice and children’s health. She is thrilled to utilize her skills to mobilize parents and others in New Hampshire to support America’s Clean Power Plan and advocate for children’s right to clean air.

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Here’s what we’re working on in New Hampshire:

Moms Clean Air Force is building a community of New Hampshire moms who care through hosting letter writing parties, coffees, and lunches with volunteers; presenting at Chambers of Commerce, summer camps, and other groups throughout the state; tabling at festivals and community events; and hosting movie screenings.

Climate Change: We are fighting global warming by supporting policies, namely America’s Clean Power Plan, that will reduce carbon emissions and decrease dangerous co-pollutants. Warmer temperatures allow the tick population to flourish which increases the spread of  Lyme disease and threatens the health of our moose population.

Changing climatic conditions can alter the timing and intensity of fall foliage and impact snowfall and change our ecosystem. For example, seasonal snowfall at Pinkham Notch, NH has declined over a 78 year period, and snowpack is melting off 16 days earlier on average.


Snowpack is melting off 16 days earlier on average.

Mercury: We are supporting strong limits on harmful mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants. Mercury deposited in New Hampshire is both emitted from in-state sources and carried here from sources upwind. Emissions upwind of New Hampshire are primarily attributable to coal-fired utilities and municipal and medical waste incinerators in the Northeast and Midwest. Studies show that mercury deposition rates in New Hampshire, as in the entire Northeast, are higher than in other areas of the country due to the combination of local emissions and transport from upwind sources. The global mercury reservoir that has resulted over time from both natural and man-made sources also contributes to deposition in the Northeast.

According to data from EPA, toxic air emissions from manufacturers in New Hampshire have decreased by over 85 percent since enactment of New Hampshire’s Air Toxics Control Program in 1987.

Smog: In New Hampshire smog, or ozone, and fine particulate matter (PM2.5) are the primary air pollutants of concern. However, other contaminants, such as nitrogen-oxides and sulfur-dioxide occasionally occur at significant concentrations.

During a typical summer, an ozone smog event strikes the state about one out of every four to five days. Hardest hit is the southeastern portion of the state. The worst ozone days are created when the wind flows over the east coast corridor cities of Washington, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York prior to reaching New Hampshire. The seacoast often gets the worst pollution during an episode when a sea breeze brings Boston-produced ozone pollution in from the ocean to mix with ozone pollution blown-in from other areas. Click to download ozone level charts.

“Programs such as the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative have brought numerous benefits to the Granite State, leading to new innovations while generating jobs and saving energy costs. We look forward to continuing to work with our regional partners to ensure that we reduce the harmful emissions that lead to climate change, while also helping to reduce energy costs, create jobs and encourage innovation in the state’s clean-energy economy.” -Governor Maggie Hassan, June 2014, commenting on new Federal Carbon Pollution Standards.

Clean Energy: We are ensuring that our energy future is renewable, clean, and healthy — for the sake of our children’s health.

Chemical Policy Reform: We are fighting to keep toxic chemicals out of the products we use every day, through advocating for reform of the outdated Toxic Substances Control Act.

Natural Gas Pollution: We are demanding strong protections from methane, volatile organic compounds, and other harmful air pollutants associated with fracking and natural gas development.

New Hampshire’s electricity generation by source, 2014:

  • Nuclear (52%)

  • Natural Gas (22%)

  • Renewables (10%)

  • Coal (7%)

  • Hydro (7%)

  • Petroleum (1%)


The prevalence of adult Asthma is higher in New Hampshire than in the US as a whole. New Hampshire has consistently seen one of the highest adult prevalence rates of current asthma in the country. 11% or approximately 114,563 NH adults had current asthma in 2013 and 9% of New Hampshire children have asthma.

Direct medical costs associated with asthma are 
estimated at $167 million annually in New Hampshire. Of the $24 million in direct costs to children, an estimated $8 million was due to poor air quality.
 Costs associated with lost wages due to asthma care are estimated at $21 million annually.

Children 0-4 years old have the highest rates for both emergency department visits and inpatient hospitalizations for asthma. Child asthma prevalence varies across counties of the state, with estimates ranging from 5.1% in Grafton County, to 17.4% in Coos County. In New Hampshire, asthma is also one of the leading causes of days lost from school among children ages 5 to 17.

Impacts on New Hampshire Ski Industry

Loss of 10 – 20 percent of ski season days, representing a loss of $42 million to $84 million in direct and indirect spending in New Hampshire.

Impacts on New Hampshire Forests

Ecological collapse for several tree species, including beech, maple, and hemlock (an important species for deer during the winter).

Widespread tree mortality, including spruce and others; decreases in vegetation density of 25 – 75 percent; extensive wildfires; large increases in pest and pathogen outbreaks; and a lag in the establishment of new forests for several decades.

Northern movement of other local tree species from 100 – 300 miles.

Potential large-scale die-offs of sugar maple, on average a $3 – $3.5 million dollar industry.

Impacts on New Hampshire Coasts

Sea level rise of 12 – 20 inches, causing large scale alteration of Great Bay, reduction of coastal estuaries and flooding of rivers, as well as potentially large revenue losses from coastal tourism, a $484 million generator for New Hampshire.

Huge infrastructure investments to erect dikes and dredge channels to “stem the tide.”

Impacts on New Hampshire Foliage

Dulling and browning of foliage season due to tree die-offs, species substitution, and “climate stressed” unhealthy trees. New Hampshire foliage travelers on average spend a total of $292 million annually.

Impacts on New Hampshire Fishing

Loss of cold water fishing: 50 – 100 percent eradication of rainbow, brook, and brown trout fishing, a $150 million New Hampshire industry.

Interview with New Hampshire Senior Assistant Attorney General K. Allen Brooks

BY Moms Clean Air Force ON February 16, 2016
This is a Moms Clean Air Force exclusive interview with New Hampshire Senior Assistant Attorney General K. Allen Brooks: What is unique about protecting New Hampshire’s resources?  Most of New Hampshire’s most popular attractions involve the outdoors and the environment.  These can be negatively impacted by...

TOPICS: Clean Air Rules and Regulations, Climate Change, New Hampshire, Politics
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Upcoming Events

Wednesday, June 1, 9:30 AM: Field organizer, Becky Whitley will speak at an LCV-NH event “The State of the Air and Public Health: Time for Climate Change Action” at New England College Concord. The event will highlight the American Lung Association’s 2016 State of the Air report and recommendations to improve the quality of the air we breathe. It will also highlight the impacts of climate change on public health and advocate for solutions such as the EPA’s Clean Power Plan.

Past Events

May 2016:

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire tabled at the Stonyfield Earth Day 5K Race.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire tabled at NH Mama & Baby Expo.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire led a tele-press conference on the Methane New Source Rule. Staff from both New Hampshire Senators joined the call, which featured four speakers who presented on all aspects of the impacts of methane pollution and voiced support for the rule, while also calling on the Administration to continue work on regulating existing sources.

A group of New Hampshire moms and children attended lobby visits at Senator Ayotte and Senator Shaheen’s office in Manchester. We discussed the impacts of climate change on children’s health, and asthma in particular, and delivered large Mother’s Day cards from NH Moms and children.

April 2016:

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire tabled at Abbot-Downing Elementary School Health Fair.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire hosted an Earth Day Read-In at Stratham Circle Learning Center.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire tabled at Funergy Expo in North Conway.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire tabled at “Discover Wild NH Day”.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire tabled at the Early Childhood Fair in Nashua.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire hosted a Read-In at NH Family Literacy Day held at Merrimack-Valley High School.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire tabled at the NH School Nurses conference.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire attended Conceivable Future Keene House Party.

March 2016:

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire hosted a Read-In with Governor Hassan at the Statehouse.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire tabled at the 2016 New Hampshire Women’s Expo.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire co-hosted a Waffle Breakfast to highlight climate impacts on an important NH industry, maple syrup production.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire hosted a Read-In at Hopkinton Public Library, New Hampshire during Storytime.

February 2016:

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire hosted a Clean Air Valentine Making Party at the home of field organizer, Becky Whitley. Attendees created Valentines to be sent to DC for a delivery to the EPA.

December 2015:

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire and Union of Concerned Scientists hosted a Moms and Docs Climate Roundtable to discuss what air pollution, global warming and global climate change mean for our future, and what we can do about it. Hear from the experts why acting on climate is essential for our children’s health.

November 2015: 

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire hosted preschool storytime at Hopkinton Library.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire attended and tabled at  the Climate of Change Conference put on by the New England Environmental Educators Association.

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire attended the Citizens’ Climate Lobby 2015 Northeast Regional Conference | Courtyard by Marriott, 2200 Southwood Dr., Nashua, NH

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire hosted a Ladies Night & Norwex Party with Supermom Sara French.

October, 2015: 

Attended and spoke about climate justice issues at  “Stand with Women” House Party hosted by NextGen Climate and NH Citizens Alliance.

Attended and provided support at Climate Day of Action event in Portsmouth, NH called “People’s Climate Speak Out”.

September, 2015:

Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire members met with Governor Hassan and delivered a large decorated card asking the Governor to protect our children from climate change.

Play-In for Climate Action & Press Conference | Families gathered to raise awareness around climate change and staff from Senator Ayotte’s and Senator Shaheen’s offices came and read letters from the Senators.

May 2015: Mama Summit 2015 | Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire members gathered at the state capitol in Concord for the second annual Mama Summit. Mama Summit participants enjoyed an excellent program of distinguished speakers, and were treated to a video message of welcome from Congresswoman Kuster. In addition to holding meetings with lawmakers to talk about the importance of clean air, participants also received a letter of support from Senator Kelly Ayotte (R).

May 2014: Mama Summit 2014| Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire members gathered in at the state capitol in Concord to call on elected officials to take climate action. Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter and state Senator Jeff Woodburn spoke alongside Mrs. New Hampshire at the plenary session, and participants heard letters from Senator Shaheen, Senator Ayotte and Congresswoman Kuster applauding the recent Supreme Court decision that allows the Cross State Air Pollution rule to be implemented, and encouraging participants to continue their work to rid the air of harmful pollutants.

In 2014: Moms Clean Air Force New Hampshire made 46 legislative visits with New Hampshire lawmakers and their staff at the state and federal level, raising the concerns of moms and dads across the state.

Quote from Senator Ayotte: “It’s so important that we protect New Hampshire’s beautiful environment for our economy and for our future.” Source: 10/25/15 press statement

Quote from Senator Shaheen: “Climate change poses a significant threat to New Hampshire’s environment and its economy.” Source: 10/26/15 press statement

Quote from Governor Hassan: “We know that a healthy environment and economic development go hand-in-hand, and that’s why addressing air quality and climate change is an economic imperative for our state.” Source: 10/26/15 press statement


Maggie Hassan

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US Senate

Kelly Ayotte

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Environmental Scorecard

Jeanne Shaheen

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Environmental Scorecard

US House of Representatives

Frank Guinta (District 1)

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Ann Kuster (District 2)

Contact information:

Environmental Scorecard

Take a look at what we’ve been up to in New Hampshire: