FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Air Quality Alert Issued for June 1 and 2 in Central Ohio
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Public Information Manager
Email: [email protected]
Air Quality Alert Issued for June 1 and 2 in Central Ohio
Air Pollution Levels Expected to be Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups
[COLUMBUS, OH, June 1, 2023] – The Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC) is issuing an Air Quality Alert for today and tomorrow. The region – Delaware, Fairfield, Franklin, and Licking counties – is likely to experience ground-level ozone pollution levels that are Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups on the national Air Quality Index (AQI) scale. Today’s AQI is forecasted to be 101, and Friday’s is expected to be 108.
A ridge of high pressure aloft will move westward across the Great Lakes, limiting atmospheric mixing in Central Ohio. Furthermore, light northeasterly winds will hinder dispersion and transport a thin plume of wildfire smoke and associated ozone precursors into the region, while sunny skies and highs in the upper-80s to low-90s enhance ozone formation. Therefore, AQI levels will be Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups on Thursday, June 1, and Friday, June 2.
This Saturday, an increase in moisture and light to moderate north-northeasterly winds will bring a slight reduction to ozone development in the Columbus region; however, with warm temperatures continuing and pollutant carryover from previous days, AQI levels will remain moderate. Sunday and Monday, partly cloudy skies will limit ozone formation, while periods of northerly to northeasterly winds aid dispersion. However, temperatures in the low-80s each day will support ozone formation, yielding moderate AQI levels on both days.
MORPC uses the national AQI scale to inform the public about daily ozone and particle pollution levels in Central Ohio. The AQI scale runs from 0-500 – the higher the AQI value, the greater the health concern. When levels reach above 100, air quality is considered Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups, and MORPC issues an Air Quality Alert to the public.
Active children, the elderly, and people with asthma and COPD are more likely to suffer an increase in the number and severity of symptoms during an Air Quality Alert. To decrease the potential for health issues, sensitive groups are urged to limit prolonged outdoor activity or plan outdoor activities for the morning. Those who are experiencing breathing difficulties should consult their doctor. More information on the health effects of ozone pollution is available from the U.S. EPA at AirNow.
The public can receive free Air Quality Alert notifications directly by email or sign up by visiting www.morpc.org/airquality.
On Air Quality Alert days, MORPC recommends taking actions to improve air quality. Most of the ozone pollution created in Central Ohio comes from cars and trucks. Information about transportation options can be found online at https://morpc.gohio.com/ or contact MORPC at 1.888.742.RIDE (7433) for more information. When everyone pitches in, our communities breathe better air.
Explore your commute options with Gohio Commute: https://morpc.gohio.com/
Turn off your engine instead of idling your vehicle to cut down on vehicle emissions.
Avoid refueling your vehicle or wait until dusk to refuel your vehicle. Filling up your tank when the daytime heat has diminished helps to reduce harmful ground-level ozone pollution.
Avoid topping off your tank at the gas station. Spilled gasoline pollutes the air when it evaporates.
Avoid mowing your lawn or using other gas-powered lawn equipment on an Air Quality Alert Day. Longer grass in your yard is good for the air and water quality.
Visit http://morpc.org/airquality for more information about MORPC’s Air Quality Program. Call MORPC’s toll-free hotline for the latest air quality forecast at 1-888-666-1009. English and Spanish options are available.
The Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC) is Central Ohio’s regional council with more than 80 local governments and community partners. We take pride in bringing communities of all sizes and interests together to collaborate on best practices and plan for the future growth and sustainability of our region.