PRESS RELEASE | ADEQ introduces new Air Quality Hourly Forecasts for areas of concern around the state on Children’s Environmental Health Day, October 11, 2018

PHOENIX (October 11, 2018) – On this Children’s Environmental Health Day, the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) announces a new online air quality forecast tool that provides an hour-by-hour outlook at daily pollutant trends. Focused on areas of concern around the state, the Air Quality Hourly Forecast helps parents and school officials better plan for outdoor activities through the day to minimize the impacts of air pollution.

Air pollution can impact sensitive populations, including children, senior citizens and people with respiratory or pulmonary diseases. Young children are especially vulnerable because their respiratory and immune systems are still developing and they breathe more rapidly than adults, inhaling more air per breath.

“The hourly forecasts are useful for schools, which can adjust recess activities for kids sensitive to air pollution, such as those with asthma,” said ADEQ Air Quality Director Timothy Franquist. “And, because our forecast team was already looking at the daily trends to better determine when health alerts needed to be issued, it was an obvious next step to put this information online for public use.”

ADEQ Air Forecasting | View >

Air Quality Hourly Forecasts are available for Phoenix, Tucson, Yuma and Nogales and include pollutants of concern for each specific area. When levels of pollutants are forecast to be near or above a federal health standard, ADEQ issues two kinds of alerts to inform the community of expected conditions.

  • High Pollution Advisory (HPA): Notifies the public that the level of an air pollutant is expected to exceed the federal health standard
  • Health Watch: Notifies the public that the level of an air pollutant is expected to approach the federal health standard

Even healthy adults can feel the effects of air pollution when exercising outside. During the health alerts, the Air Quality Hourly Forecast allows people who enjoy outdoor activities to see what part of the day may be most impacted by a specific pollutant.

“As an avid bicycle-commuter, I check the forecasts every day I ride,” said Christopher W. of Gilbert. “I wanted to maximize the health benefits of active-commuting, so I bought a high quality air filter mask to wear on days when breathing the air could negatively impact my health. The hourly forecast now helps me know when I may need to wear the mask during my ride to and from work.”

Additional Resources

Phoenix Air Quality Hourly Forecast | View >
Tucson Air Quality Hourly Forecast | View >
Yuma Air Quality Hourly Forecast | View >
Nogales Air Quality Hourly Forecast | View >
ADEQ Air Quality Flag Program | View >

Contact

ADEQ Public Information Officer | E-mail > | 602-771-2215 (office) | 602-540-8072 (cell)