Houstonia's The Bench is Back

Right now, all over America, cities are installing a contraption both ingenious and attractive, namely a data-collecting device that the Environmental Protection Agency has cleverly disguised as an ordinary park bench. You can find them in Philadelphia, Washington, DC and elsewhere, but you can’t find them in Houston, as Dave Fehling of KUHF reported back in May. 

It’s not through lack of trying. Air Alliance Houston, in an effort to participate in the EPA program—known as The Village Green Project—has actively sought to bring just such a bench to our city since last year. So why don’t we have one? “The application that was submitted by the City of Houston required participation from the state agency, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality,” Air Alliance’s Adrian Shelley told Fehling. “The state declined to commit those resources.”

That’s right. The state whose industries are responsible for much of the world’s air pollution declined to back a program that would monitor air quality levels in a city that possesses some of the country’s dirtiest air.              

It doesn’t have to be this way, and it won’t if Houstonia’s GoFundMe campaign, The Bench is Back, is successful. How much does one of these babies cost, you ask? $30,000. That’s right, just $30,000 is all it would take to have real-time publically accessible data on the air that Houstonians of all ages breathe every day. 

This is an issue of great importance to us here at Houstonia. Indeed, the magazine is donating the first $5,000 toward the building of a Village Green pollution monitoring station. Won’t you please join us—look deep within your heart, as Sally Struthers might say—in bringing one of these benches to the city of Houston, and not incidentally shame the state of Texas for its lack of effort on our behalf?

Your support is greatly appreciated.
  • Adrian Shelley 
    • $50 
    • 73 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $50 
    • 73 mos
  • Tammie Brown 
    • $50 
    • 73 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $50 
    • 74 mos
  • Alex George 
    • $50 
    • 74 mos
See all

Organizer

Cathy Matusow Balke 
Organizer
Houston, TX
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