Air pollution causes major environmental health problems in Indigenous communities.
Indigenous communities are disproportionately impacted by pipelines, mines, waste incinerators, and other polluting industries that poison the air and water.
Indigenous adults and children have higher rates of many diseases linked to air pollution exposure, including asthma, diabetes, heart disease, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD). An emerging air quality threat for Indigenous people is climate change. Wildfires are an increasing concern to air quality. As the climate changes, hotter temperatures and drier conditions can trigger catastrophic wildfires on and near Tribal lands.
Climate change poses particular threats to ways of life and health of Indigenous families in every region of the US. Climate change is contributing to the loss of Indigenous cultures and Indigenous knowledge systems, and it is forcing the relocation of Indigenous communities.
A Report from the National Tribal Air Association and Moms Clean Air Force
In April 2021, The National Tribal Air Association and Moms Clean Air Force released Indigenous People and Air Pollution — a report detailing the harm that air pollution and climate change cause to Indigenous communities and Tribal lands in the United States.
At least 200
methane or coal
power plants are within
50 miles of tribal lands
of Indigenous children have
asthma — a much higher rate
than other American children
adults and children have
higher rates of many diseases
linked to air pollution exposure