August 25, 2014

Smoke and Dust affecting US Air Quality

The wildfire complexes in Northern California are causing Unhealthy AQIs over the region, retiring around 4:00 PM EDT to Moderate (EPA AirNow, top left). Medium to heavy smoke is still being produced, hovering over the site of these wildfires and spreading both South and West into Nevada, Idaho, and Ohio (HMS, top right). A spot of USG AQIs pops up before 6:00 PM EDT in Southern Manitoba possibly due to Saharan dust, which is expected to reach 1.26 mg/m^3 around the area (NAAPS, bottom). Moving onto the Eastern half of the US, the Great Lakes Region and Mississippi Valley are possibly experiencing both a sulfate surface concentration reaching 8 ug/m^3 as well as Saharan dust, which helps explain the presence of Moderate AQIs over these two regions. Plentiful fires are also burning in the South Eastern US--some producing smoke--which could also be attributing to these Moderate AQIs. A swath of light remnant smoke from the still burning NW Territories wildfires can be seen over the Northeast. The smoke currently being produced from these wildfires continues to swirl over most of the country.

Posted by Farrah Daham at August 25, 2014 11:38 PM

I think the dust depicted in the NAAPS over the U.S. Northern Plains is coming from the Wyoming/Colorado/Nebraska area, not the Sahara.

Posted by: John at August 26, 2014 7:27 AM
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