Summer air pollution season is on its wayby Pima County News on Apr. 02, 2012, under air pollution, Environmental Quality, Health, Pima County, Tucson
Pima County, Ariz. (April 2, 2012) – The 2011-12 winter air-pollution season – October through March – has ended uneventfully, according to the Pima County Department of Environmental Quality, which monitors air quality.
Several air-quality advisories were issued over the winter by PDEQ to warn sensitive individuals of potential particulate problems on windy days. But there were no official unhealthy days recorded this winter for any of the six air pollutants that PDEQ monitors.
However, the approaching hot, stagnant days that will occur during the warmer months favor the formation of a pollutant called “ground-level ozone.” This human-caused pollutant is different from the ozone layer that occurs naturally in the atmosphere above us and protects us from the sun.
Ground-level ozone can cause short-term health effects including chest pain, coughing, and nose and throat irritation. It is also linked to increased symptoms for those with respiratory disease such as asthma, bronchitis and emphysema.
Up-to-the-hour air pollution information is available on PDEQ’s website at www.AirInfoNow.org or by calling (520) 882-4AIR. The Air Info Now website also creates real-time “ozone maps” to show where ozone is forming over our community.
Residents can sign up to receive emails to let them know when air pollution levels are forecasted to cause health concerns for sensitive individuals. Contact PDEQ at (520) 243-7446 for more information or sign up on the PDEQ website.
Since motor-vehicle use causes most of the air pollution in Pima County, a special effort is beingmade to remind everyone to maintain their vehicles; check and properly inflate their tires monthly; avoid extended engine idling at locations such as schools and drive-through lanes and try to carpool, bike, ride Sun Tran or walk at least one day a week.