For the second day in a row and the fourth time in two weeks, the Georgia Environmental Protection Division has issued a Smog Alert for metro Atlanta. Today's forecasted Air Quality Index number is 106.
According to the government website AirNow, "Think of the AQI as a yardstick that runs from 0 to 500. The higher the AQI value, the greater the level of air pollution and the greater the health concern. For example, an AQI value of 50 represents good air quality with little potential to affect public health, while an AQI value over 300 represents hazardous air quality."
The website goes on to explain that "AQI values below 100 are generally thought of as satisfactory. When AQI values are above 100, air quality is considered to be unhealthy-at first for certain sensitive groups of people, then for everyone as AQI values get higher."
Today's "Orange" alert (applying to AQIs between 100-150) is unhealthy air for sensitive groups.
According to the Clean Air Campaign, "Children, people who are sensitive to ozone, and people with heart or lung disease should limit prolonged outdoor exertion during the late afternoon or early evening when ozone levels are highest."
Commuters are encouraged to carpool and air quality can be improved with less driving. Smog is formed by emissions coming from the tailpipes of cars.
Several methods of keeping cars off the road include:
- Commuters can carpool, vanpool, walk, cycle, ride transit or telework. Find carpool opportunities in Douglasville by reading here. Douglas County residents can also take advantage of .
- Parents are encouraged to walk with their children to school. Parents can also ensure their children's school participates in the Clean Air School program.
- Businesses can get free consulting services for doing this from The CAC or offer workers telecommuting options. Read a Patch story about how .