It’s been a tough summer here in California—massive fires throughout the northern part of the state have caused significant damage, and have resulted in poor air quality through much of the northwest. Fortunately, we are pleased to report the air quality index is now safe for most people to visit our marina in Lewiston, CA again.
There are still pollutants in the air, and some days are better than others, but in general, people in the Lewiston area are no longer confined to indoor spaces. As of the time of writing, the AQI (air quality index) reading for Lewiston was 71, which puts it in the “moderate” air quality category according to the standard set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Here are the six categories of AQI:
- Good (0 to 50): Little to no health risk
- Moderate (51 to 100): Moderate health risk for people who are especially sensitive or prone to certain types of health conditions.
- Unhealthy to sensitive groups (101 to 150): High risk for young children, elderly adults and any groups that suffer from lung or heart disease.
- Unhealthy (151 to 200): High health risk for all groups of people.
- Very unhealthy (201 to 300): High, serious health risk for all groups of people.
- Hazardous (301 to 500): Serious health risk for all populations.
What goes into determining the AQI?
Air quality tends to be at its worst starting in late spring and throughout the summer, but obviously this year’s fires made matters much worse. It’s important to be aware of the AQI in your area, because some people are more sensitive than others when it comes to air quality changes, especially very young children or elderly adults.
The AQI rating takes into account these categories of pollutants:
- Chemicals: Chemicals such as carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide can be problematic when they do not mix properly into the atmosphere. This usually occurs as a result of high heat and low winds. As concentrations of these chemicals go up, breathing becomes more difficult, especially for people who already suffer from asthma or respiratory conditions.
- Particle pollution: Particles that result from fires, power plants, dust storms and vehicles can become suspended in the air and result in some asthma-like symptoms for people, such as shortness of breath, coughing or wheezing. Obviously, these conditions are worsened in people who already regularly suffer from these symptoms due to chronic respiratory conditions.
- Ground-level ozone: This pollutant becomes a factor when nitrogen oxide, carbon dioxide and hydrogen released from power plants, vehicles and combustion systems react with sunlight and heat. The result is worse breathing capacity when ground level ozone is found in higher concentrations.
Right now, it’s safe to get out and enjoy the weather here in Lewiston, but it’s important to keep an eye on the AQI each day, as with the fire situation, you never know when the conditions could change. Contact us at our marina in Lewiston, CA for more information.
Categorised in: Boat Marina
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