Another Air Quality Alert

 

 
Current North Pole Air Quality is classified as “Unhealthy” and exceeds the EPA health limit for fine particulate pollution.  People with respiratory or heart disease, the elderly and children should avoid prolonged exertion; everyone else should limit prolonged exertion.
 
  The NWS forecast and local conditions in North Pole  and  Fairbanks are resulting in poor to very poor dispersion.  So the FNSB is forecasting the air quality in North Pole to remain ‘Unhealthy’ through Monday, and the air quality in Fairbanks to degrade to ‘Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups’ by Sunday morning.
 
Note that Air Quality readings are from monitoring stations in Fairbanks and North Pole, and may not be representative in your area. 
Particulate pollution will be more concentrated in neighborhoods where a lot of space heating due to wood and coal burning is occurring and also in parking lots if cars are idling, and will be less concentrated in the hills.
  If you are sensitive to respiratory problems and experience any effects, please follow the instructions of your physician. 
 
You can help by:
  • Using oil furnaces if wood or coal is not your only source of heat and burning seasoned wood without smoldering if you must use wood or coal.
               Note:  If you have a fresh air feed for your oil furnace you should check the inlet for icing that
               can choke your furnace and decrease its efficiency and create more particulate pollution.
 
  • Plugging your vehicles in at 20of and colder, to reduce cold start emissions. 
                   Note:  Plugging in does reduce particulate emissions from vehicles when first started.
 
  • Reducing any unnecessary driving.
 
  • Using MACS public transportation or carpooling.
 
  • Use thermostat “setback” features or turn your thermostat down a degree or two.  This helps reduce emissions and saves on fuel consumption.