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DEP Issues Code Orange Air Quality Action Day for Fine Particulate Matter for Friday, October 8, 2021, in Susquehanna Valley Area

10/07/2021

Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has issued a Code Orange Air Quality Action Day for fine particulate matter for Friday, October 8, 2021, in the Susquehanna Valley Area, which includes the counties of Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lebanon, and York.

Fine particulate matter concentrations are expected to increase overnight.  Light winds on Friday will likely contribute to daily average concentrations of fine particulate matter in the Code Orange range.  The highest hourly average concentrations of fine particulate matter are most likely to occur on Friday between 2:00 AM and 10:00 AM and again between 7:00 PM and midnight.

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 area are strongly encouraged to voluntarily help reduce fine particulate matter 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 www.ahs.dep.pa.gov/AQPartnersWeb or EPA’s AirNow at www.airnow.gov.

MEDIA CONTACT: Neil Shader, nshader@pa.gov, 717-787-1323

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