Environment

Dust from the dunes: Our ongoing investigation of air quality & health on the Nipomo Mesa

This page will be updated.

A plume of dust wafts across the Nipomo Mesa when strong winds blow, carrying tiny particles that can penetrate deep into the lungs of the people who live, work and go to school there. While sand blows naturally in the dunes, there’s evidence that the dust is increased by human activity on the nearby Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area.

The Tribune is investigating this issue with support from USC Annenberg’s Center for Health Journalism. If you have questions or information to share, please fill out the form below.

New stories on this issue will be linked below as they are published.

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Do you live on the Mesa? Here’s what you need to know

We’ll break it down for you in our first story: Find out what we know about air quality on the Nipomo Mesa, and the best ways to protect yourself and your family from the health risks of dirty air. Read more here »»

Nipomo Story 1 image.jpg

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You ask, we answer: What are the health risks of air quality on the Mesa?

Air quality on the Nipomo Mesa in South San Luis Obispo County regularly violates clean air standards during high wind events — and we’ve heard a lot of questions about what that means for the health of residents who live there.

We are committed to finding answers and sharing them here. Find the questions — and answers — here »»

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Monica Vaughan is reporting this project with the University of Southern California Annenberg Center for Health Journalism 2019 California Fellowship with engagement support from the Center’s interim engagement editor, Danielle Fox.

Follow more of our reporting on Oceano Dunes

See all 9 stories
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Monica Vaughan reports on health, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo County, oil and wildlife at The Tribune. She previously covered crime and justice in the Sacramento Valley, is a graduate of the University of Oregon journalism school and is a sixth-generation Californian. Have an idea for a story? Email: mvaughan@thetribunenews.com
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