How to Reduce Particulate Matter

Use Alternatives to Open Burning

Open burning is a large source of PM. Open burning includes the burning of landscaping debris, household trash, demolition debris, and land-clearing debris.

  • Using Composting and Grasscycling, yard trimmings and garden scraps can be recycled to improve and beautify the garden and landscape.
  • What is the difference between Open Burning and a Prescribed Fire?
  • It is against the law to burn household garbage and trash in South Carolina. Learn what you can and cannot burn in South Carolina
  • Know the effects of particulate matter on your health and the environment.

Drive Less

Driving a car is likely a person's single most polluting daily activity. Significant progress has been made in reducing emissions and improving air quality since the 1970s. However, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation , the number of miles that our vehicles travel has nearly tripled since then. People are driving more miles than ever before, and this offsets some of the advantages gained from cleaner engine technology.

  • Using an Alternative Work Schedule or Telecommuting to reduce the miles you drive to and from work
  • Travel by Carpooling, Ridesharing, or Mass Transit options to reduce the amount of vehicles on the road
  • Utilizing or starting a Park and Ride location
  • Shopping by phone, mail, or the Internet
  • Have a healthier commute with Walking or Biking

Drive Smart

How we operate our vehicles can help reduce pollution. Here are some ideas:

  • Slowly increase your car's speed and use cruise control on the highway.
  • Trip-Chaining, which combines several errands into a single trip.
  • Obey the speed limit. It saves gas and reduces greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Keep your vehicle tuned up and your tires properly inflated. Both help save gasoline and improve air quality, as well as make your car safer.
  • Don't top off the gas tank.
  • When shopping for that next car, consider more efficient, less-polluting models.
  • Do not idle your vehicle. Turn off your engine if you expect to be stopped for more than 30 seconds (except in traffic). Consider not using drive-through windows, instead park and walk inside.


Reduce Particulate Matter