August 9, 2018

West Coast experiences heavy smoke

Air quality today was not good, with Code Yellow (Moderate), Code Orange (Unsafe for Sensitive Groups), Code Red (Unhealthy), and Code Purple (Very Unhealthy) levels were seen all along the West Coast (AirNow, top left). There was also Code Orange and Red seen in the Northern Plains States and the Rocky Mountain states. This increase in PM 2.5 was somewhat due to an increase in smoke in the western part of the region from multiple wildfires. The spread of the smoke, which has light and heavy plumes of smoke, could seen in NOAA's HMS map, top right. One of these wildfires was the Mendocino Complex wildfire, which currently spans over 256,000 acres and counting. The wildfire's cause is currently unknown (InciWeb). Ozone levels, however, stayed around Code Yellow levels in the Rocky Mountain States, the Pacific Southwest, the Great Lakes region, and the Plains States. There was also a small amount of Code Red in California.

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Posted by mglover at August 9, 2018 10:02 PM
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