[UPDATE 11/17/2011: DEC has now declared an Air Quality Advisory effective 9 am Nov 17, 2011 to 5 pm Nov 18, 2011. Conditions are UNHEALTHY FOR SENSITIVE GROUPS.]
Clear, calm, and cold today: minus 20ºF to minus 40ºF with an inversion. WeatherUnderground forecasts it will last 7 days.
Residents knew minus 30ºF temps were on the way and that we’d be locked in with the smoke.
But Alaska DEC missed noticing the not-so-surprising rise in PM 2.5 pollution and didn’t declare an Air Quality Advisory today, Nov 16, 2011.
DEC didn’t notice as the downtown Fairbanks PM 2.5 monitors climbed over 60 µg/m3 at 10 am and over 70 µg/m3 at 5 pm. Didn’t notice 7 hours over 40 µg/m3!
The Borough was on the ball, however, and declared its own Air Quality Advisory at 4 pm.
The North Pole Elementary monitor fritzed out yesterday around midday, so we can only guess how our North Pole neighbors are doing.
Protect yourself. Don’t wait for DEC to tell you when the smoke is thick. Track the smoke yourself. Visit Real-time Monitoring to learn how. Check out the webcams too.