Smog Season Begins – Hot Weather Impacts Air Quality

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                 May 5, 2011

Contact: Terry Dressler, Director, Santa Barbara County Air Pollution Control District, 805-961-8853

State and Federal Ozone Standards Exceeded in Santa Barbara County

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. ? The Santa Barbara County Air Pollution Control District (District) announced that levels of ground-level ozone, a principal component of smog, recorded yesterday at county monitoring stations exceeded state and federal health standards.The federal eight-hour ozone standard was exceeded at stations in Santa Barbara, Carpinteria, El Capitan, and Las Flores Canyon (on the Gaviota Coast). In addition, ozone levels at these stations exceeded the state eight-hour ozone standard, which was also exceeded at stations in Goleta, Lompoc, Nojoqui, and Paradise Road. ?Ozone forms much more rapidly in hot weather, and disperses slowly when breezes are light or still. We can consider this the beginning of our 2011 smog season,? said District Director Terry Dressler. He added, ?Ozone levels are typically highest in late afternoon and early evening.?   These levels of ozone are considered unhealthful for sensitive groups, including children, older adults, and people with heart or lung conditions. Everyone, and especially sensitive individuals, should limit outdoor activities and avoid outdoor exercise during periods when air quality is impacted.   To view ozone levels updated hourly, see ?Today?s Air Quality? on this website on this page.

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