Air pollution advisory issued for the metro area for Jan. 27 and 28
The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has issued an air pollution health ADVISORY for the Twin Cities metro area for Tuesday, Jan. 27 and Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2009. An ADVISORY means that levels of air pollution are expected to be high enough to affect some individuals. The Air Quality Index forecast (fine particles from vehicle exhaust, soot and smoke from fires and industrial sources) is forecast to be 87 today and 97 tomorrow. These levels are considered unhealthy for some individuals.
People with heart or lung diseases (including asthma) are encouraged to take it easy outdoors. Children and athletes are also vulnerable because they breathe deeply when exercising so it’s a good idea to postpone or reduce vigorous activity.
Here are some things you can do to help reduce ozone pollution:
- Since vehicles are a major cause of ozone pollution, reduce driving, avoid driving alone - carpool or catch a ride with a friend or ride the bus or light rail
- Postpone outdoor work that involves small engines (i.e. snow blowers/lawn mowers and other gas-powered equipment), painting or use of solvents
- Reduce use of boilers
- Avoid idling your vehicle
To reduce air pollution, the City of Minneapolis limits vehicle idling in most cases to three minutes, except in traffic.
Vehicle motors release particulate matter, dirt, nitrous oxides, hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide into the air. These chemicals are linked to increased rates of cancer, heart and lung disease and asthma and are the major source of human-caused global warming. Children are especially vulnerable to vehicle air pollution because their lungs are still developing, and they inhale more pounds of pollution per pound of body weight than adults do.
For the driver, reducing idling saves money in fuel. On average a car will burn more than half a gallon of fuel for every hour spent idling. In general, 10 seconds of idling uses more fuel then restarting the car. Don't let your gas money go up in smoke.
The AQI is updated on an hourly basis (during daytime hours) by the MPCA. To check the AQI during the day, go to Air Quality Index for Minnesota.
Jan. 27, 2009
Published Jan. 27, 2009