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DEP Issues Code Orange Air Quality Action Day for Fine Particulate Matter for Thursday, January 14, 2021, in Southeastern and Southcentral Counties


Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has issued a Code Orange Air Quality Action Day for fine particulate matter for Thursday, January 14, 2021, in the southeastern counties of Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia, and the southcentral counties of Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lebanon, and York.

A significant temperature inversion and light wind are likely to contribute to daily average concentrations of fine particulate matter in the Code Orange range. The highest concentrations of fine particulate matter are most likely to occur between 3:00 AM and 10:00 AM.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Air Quality Index (AQI) provides standardized color codes for forecasting and reporting daily air quality. Green signifies good air quality; Yellow means moderate air quality; Orange represents unhealthy pollution levels for sensitive groups of people; and Red warns of unhealthy pollution levels for all.

An Air Quality Action Day is issued when the AQI is forecasted to be Code Orange or higher. On an Air Quality Action Day, young children, the elderly, and those with respiratory problems, such as asthma, emphysema, and bronchitis, are especially vulnerable to the effects of air pollution and should limit outdoor activities.

Residents and businesses within the Air Quality Action Day areas are strongly encouraged to voluntarily help reduce air pollution by:

Reducing or eliminating fireplace and wood stove use;
Avoiding the open burning of leaves, trash and other materials; and
Avoiding the use of gas-powered lawn and garden equipment.

For more information, visit DEP at, EPA’s AirNow at, or the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission’s Air Quality Partnership at

MEDIA CONTACT: Neil Shader, 717-787-1323

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