2010 March 3 to 6: MN Minneapolis: Particulate Air Alerts: You may have a harder time breathing this week
Last update: March 3, 2010 – 7:19 PM
In the 70’s and 80’s when the coal/power industry was told to clean up their emisisions they found an answer: taller smoke stacks that … read more release tinier particulate matter, higher into the atmosphere. It solved all the local air pollution problems, but now that we have more and more of these "clean coal" plants to the south of us and in our midst. Our air carries a perpetual burden of pollution. When the wind dies, the pollution settles. Lucky us! There is no such thing as clean air in Minnesota. Remember, you should not be able to see the air you breathe!
WHY SO MANY ALERTS?
See reporter Tom Meersman’s story on air alerts at www.startribune.com.
State officials have issued an air quality advisory for the Twin Cities, effective Thursday through Saturday.
While short of an air quality alert, the advisory means that pollution levels have the potential of reaching unhealthy levels for sensitive groups, including people with respiratory or cardiovascular problems, children and the elderly, or people who exercise strenuously outdoors.
An advisory was also posted for the Rochester area Wednesday, to remain in effect through Saturday.
Light winds and temperature inversions, in which warm air caps cooler air and pollutants near the ground, have led to the alerts, according to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. Technically, the air quality advisory is based on an air quality index exceeding 90, while an alert is triggered at 101. More information is available at aqi.pca.state.mn.us.