Wildfires In Canada Again Impacting Nebraska Air Quality

Wildfires In Canada Again Impacting Nebraska Air Quality
Courtesy of NDEE.

WAYNE – Beginning Tuesday, August 3, an advisory of possible Moderate (yellow category) to Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups (orange category) impacts may occur in the state of Nebraska pertaining to air quality.

According to a release from the Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy (NDEE), this advisory will last through Wednesday, August 4. Intermittent Unhealthy (red category) impacts in certain areas are also possible as impacts may continue at the Moderate AQI (Air Quality Index) level through the weekend.

During yellow category/moderate conditions, sensitive groups should consider limiting prolonged outdoor exertion. When conditions rise to the orange category, sensitive groups are advised to reduce prolonged outdoor exertion. In red category/unhealthy conditions, sensitive groups should avoid prolonged or heavy exertion and consider moving activities indoors or rescheduling; others should reduce prolonged or heavy exertion and take more breaks during outdoor activities.

Wildfires in Canada and the western U.S. may affect the air quality in Nebraska. NDEE staff monitor smoke levels and wind directions to assess when impacts to Nebraska’s air quality may occur. Smoke advisories are issued for impacted areas by notifying the media and local health departments, and posting information on the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy’s (NDEE) webpages and social media sites. Advisories help citizens protect their health by alerting them to days where outdoor activities should be reduced or avoided to minimize exposure to smoke.

Advisories are based on data provided by National Weather Service, smoke plume modeling and from air quality monitors located in Omaha, Bellevue, Lincoln, Grand Island and Scottsbluff.

The following Air Quality Index (AQI) is used as this AQI is used nationally. For an hourly update on air quality across Nebraska, visit https://www.airnow.gov. To sign up for automatic air quality notifications by text or email, visit http://www.enviroflash.info.

The current for AQI for Wayne (based on Union County reporting area) was in the green (good level) of 22 as of noon on Tuesday.