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News Flash • Ozone High Pollution Advisory issued for Friday

The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) will issue a High Ozone Pollution Advisory (HPA) for Maricopa County for Friday, June 28, 2024. This HPA is due to ozone levels expected to accumulate above the federal health standard for ozone.

Ground-level ozone forms when emissions from vehicles, gasoline and diesel equipment, industrial and chemical processes, and other everyday activities react with sunlight. Because these emissions react more readily to sunlight, ozone pollution is more noticeable during the spring and summer.

Ground-level ozone pollution can affect all county residents, although people have different sensitivities. Ground-level ozone pollution is harmful to the lungs and can cause asthma. Children are at greatest risk from ozone because their lungs are still developing, they are more likely to be active outdoors, and they are more susceptible to asthma than adults. Adults with asthma or other lung diseases and older adults are also sensitive to ozone. Children and adults, especially those with respiratory diseases, should limit their outdoor activities while the HPA is in place.

ADEQ and the Maricopa County Air Quality Department (MCAQD) encourage residents and businesses to take advantage of the following tips and resources to reduce ozone pollution and make the air easier to breathe.

  • Promote remote working and reduce traffic congestion.
  • Drive less. When possible, carpool, vanpool, or take public transportation.
  • Avoid long drive-thru lines – just park your car and walk in.
  • Bike or walk to work.
  • Instead of using a leaf blower, try sweeping.
  • Fuel your vehicle after dark or at night when it is cooler.
  • Use low volatile organic compound (VOC) or water-based paints, stains, finishes, and paint strippers.
  • Postpone your painting project until the high pollution alert or health watch has been lifted.
  • Containers of household cleaners, garage and garden chemicals, and other solvents should be tightly sealed to prevent vapors from evaporating into the air.
  • To learn more about reducing air pollution, visit Maricopa.gov/AQ.

This high contamination advisory includes the following restrictions:

  • Burning wood in residential fireplaces, fireplaces, outdoor fire pits, and similar outdoor fires is prohibited in Maricopa County. This includes individuals and businesses with open burning permits.
  • Agency employees and contractors are prohibited from operating leaf blowers, and residents are encouraged to avoid using leaf blowers during the HPA.
  • Avoid using off-road vehicles.

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High Pollutant Advisory (HPA): Notifies the public that levels of air pollutants are expected to exceed federal health standards.

Ozone: Ground-level ozone is produced by chemical reactions between sunlight, nitrogen oxides (NOx), and VOCs.

Media Contact [English/Spanish]

Ari Halpert

602-501-1266 Mobile

602-506-6713 Desk

ari.halpert@maricopa.gov

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About Maricopa County Air Quality

MCAQD's mission is to improve the air in Maricopa County so customers, residents and visitors can live, work and play in a healthy environment. MCAQD is administered by the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors and follows air quality standards set by the federal Clean Air Act. Visit Maricopa.gov/AQ for air quality information and resources.

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