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Cherise Harris noticed a change in her eldest daughter soon after the family moved a block away from a 132-year-old coal-fired power plant in Painesville, Ohio.

The teen’s asthma attacks occurred more frequently, Harris said, and she started carrying an inhaler with her at all times.

The family didn’t know it at the time, but Painesville’s municipal-owned plant emits nitrogen oxide and sulfur dioxide – two pollutants that the American Lung Association says inflames air passages, causing shortness of breath, chest tightness, pain and wheezing.  

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Photo credit: Getty Images

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