June 1, 2014

Weekend Edition: June comes in like a lamb

The 2014 Air Pollution season is giving us somewhat of a break with relatively benign air quality problems (except for the California fires of last month). Saturday and Sunday have seen beautiful clear days in the east with relatively low photochemical production of haze. In the Southeast, the agricultural burning season is ended and where there is spring crop clearing, it is in southern prairie provinces of Canada.

The AIRNOW loop shows that a broad area of moderate PM air quality is stuck over the US Great Lakes states and the occasional code orange is now popping up in Illinois. This is likely to migrate eastward over the next few days as this east coast high pressure is pushed out from storms which are predicted to be heavy in the northern plains with flooding potential.

In Southern California, a code orange near El Centro-Mexicali, could be caused by dust. The NOAA Air Quality forecasts are still going (thanks to NOAA for keeping them) and the dust forecast shows likelihood of dust in that area. In terms of smoke, the Spring and Black River fires in Arizona are the only fires of note in the forecast. And in terms of ozone, elevated ozone should be seen today over Lake Michigan, Lake Erie, and in California.

Update June 1 20:30 EST

GASP is showing some regions of elevate AOD on Sunday which look real. There is a fire in southern Virginia putting smoke into North Carolina and there is a fire (right below) in Arizona putting smoke into New Mexico. It is unclear if this is the Spring fire or not. The USFS has a remarkable photo from last Thursday May 25 of the Slide Rock Fire.

Photo Credit: Jason Coil, USFS Coconino National Forest website (Creative Commons Licence) Posted by Ray Hoff at June 1, 2014 8:32 AM
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