Piedmont Neighborhood News

What's happening in Piedmont, CA

Winter Spare the Air Alert in Effect Today

Posted by drewbendon on November 25, 2008

No cozy fires today.

The Winter Spare the Air season runs from November 1, 2008, through February 28, 2009. This winter, for the first time in the Bay Area, it will be illegal to burn wood, pellets, or manufactured fire logs when a Winter Spare the Air Alertis issued.

In the wintertime, fine particulate matter (PM2.5) becomes the pollutant with the greatest impact on air quality. Fine particulates can bypass the body’s natural defenses, penetrating deeply into the lungs and even passing into the bloodstream. Prolonged exposure to the fine particulates in wood smoke has been linked with aggravated asthma, lung and heart disease, and increased mortality rates. Wood burning in fireplaces and woodstoves creates about one-third of the winter particulate matter air pollution in the Bay Area.

When the morning forecast predicts unhealthy particulate matter concentrations, BAAQMD will issue a Winter Spare the Air AlertWinter Spare the Air Alerts will be posted on the Spare the Air home page and on BAAQMD’s home page atwww.baaqmd.gov. It will also be recorded at 1-877-4NO-BURN. Residents and businesses can sign up for e-mail AirAlerts and automatic Phone Alerts as well, so they can “check before you burn.”

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