Monday, June 22, 2009

Dirty Air Alert For Wisconsin As Business Fights Climate Change Bill

What a coincidence: just as business interests in Wisconsin ramp up their opposition to landmark greenhouse gas emission legislation working its way through the Congress, the Department of Natural Resources issues what will just be the first of many dirty air alerts for much of the state.

The text will follow.

Anyone see a contradiction here?

From the DNR:

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is issuing an Air Quality Watch for Ozone for Brown, Calumet, Dodge, Door, Fond du Lac, Jefferson, Kenosha, Kewaunee, Manitowoc, Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Racine, Sheboygan, Walworth, Washington and Waukesha counties effective 12:01 am on Tuesday, June 23, 2009 through 11:59 pm on Tuesday, June 23, 2009 .

The watch is being issued because of the forecast for elevated levels of ground level ozone. Ground level ozone is formed when pollution from power plants, factories and other industrial sources, vehicle exhaust, and volatile organic compounds chemically reacts with hot temperatures, high humidity and atmospheric stagnation.

The Air Quality Index is forecast to reach the orange level, which is considered unhealthy for people in sensitive groups and others, including people who are not in sensitive groups but who are engaged in strenuous outside activities or exposed for prolonged periods of time.

People in those sensitive groups include th ose with respiratory diseases, such as asthma, older adults, and active adults and children. When an air quality watch is issued, people in those groups are advised to reschedule or cut back on strenuous outside activities during the watch period.

People with lung diseases such as asthma and bronchitis should pay attention to shortness of breath, or respiratory symptoms like coughing, wheezing and discomfort when taking a breath, and consult with their physician if they have concerns or are experiencing symptoms.

Ground level ozone can irritate the respiratory system, reduce lung function, aggravate asthma and chronic lung diseases, and, over time, cause permanent lung damage.

To receive air quality advisories by e-mail, visit
There are several actions the public can take to reduce their contributions to this regional air quality problem.

Reduce driving when possible and don't leave vehicle engines idling.

Post pone activities that use small gasoline and diesel engines.

Minimize wood burning.

Conserve electricity.

For more ideas on how you can reduce your emissions today and every day visit: Do a little, save a lot!

For more information:
Air Quality Watches and Advisories Status Web Site
Daily Air Quality Hotline - 1-866-324-5924 (1-866-DAILY AIR)
Federal interagency air quality web site, for information on the Air Quality Index and nationwide air quality forecasts and air quality conditions,

DNR's statewide air quality monitoring web page,

For local DNR air management program contacts,


Dave1 said...

"Dirty air" and carbon dioxide emissions are not necessarilly related.

You can have a fuel such as natural gas with essentially no emissions except CO2.

You can also have a fuel such as wood that is essentially carbon neutral that has emissions of sorts of the typical components of "dirty air".

Best to keep things straight.

James Rowen said...

So is it your belief that natural gas fuel burn is resonsible for the DNR alert?

Dave1 said...

Not at all. Just pointing out that the dirty air alert has noting to do with CO2 emissions.