May 26, 2014

Funny River fire leads to elevated AQIs in Alaska

Happy Memorial Day! Looking at the NOAA HMS Smoke and Fire Product (top left), the small red dots indicate groups of fires, while the light grey areas are smoke plumes. The ones in Canada are a result of the Funny River fire, which has a swath of over 100,000 acres at the moment. The plume in the Southwest is rising from the Slide wildfire and could be mixing with other wildfires in the region, including the Skunk wildfire.

The webcam photo to the left is from Joshua Tree National Park, CA at 2:30 PDT. Comparing to the photo to the right, along with the moderate Ozone AQI reading at the park (67), one can see air quality has decreased in the region, with the aforementioned smoke plume from the Slide fire being a possible cause.

The EPA AIRNow combined AQI animation (bottom left) shows moderate AQIs for the eastern portion of the United States as well as Southern California. Some USG AQIs were also seen popping up, although the current high AQI is in Eagle River, AK (146). Zooming in on Alaska in particular (bottom right), unhealthy AQIs were a product of the Funny River fire in the area. As this wildfire continues to burn, expect air quality for much of southern Alaska to continue to be affected.

Posted by Graham Antoszewski at May 26, 2014 6:27 PM
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