DEQ expands air quality monitoring in Pocatello
Tuesday, April 28, 2020
POCATELLO—The Idaho Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is expanding air quality monitoring efforts in Pocatello to measure ground-level ozone.
Ground-level ozone is created when sunlight reacts with chemical pollutants emitted by automobiles, industrial facilities, and other combustion sources.
Breathing in ozone can trigger a variety of health problems, including coughing, throat irritation, and airway inflammation. It can also exacerbate existing conditions such as bronchitis, emphysema, and asthma. Children, older adults, and those that are active outdoors are most at risk for ozone-related health complications.
Until now, DEQ’s Pocatello office monitored particulate matter (PM2.5 and PM10) and meteorology. The new ozone monitor is one of three in the state and will help characterize ground-level ozone formation and allow DEQ to convey associated Air Quality Index information to the public.
Ozone is most likely to reach unhealthy levels on hot, sunny days in urban environments. It can also be transported long distances by wind, potentially impacting a much larger area.
The new monitor will operate during Idaho’s defined ozone season (April through September 30).
For current air quality information, check DEQ’s real-time air quality map (http://airquality.deq.idaho.gov/) or access the ozone forecast via the hotline (208) 236–6173 or DEQ’s Reports and Forecasts page.