March 10, 2008

Air Quality Watch covers most of state -- again

Yet another Air Quality Watch has been issued for large parts of Wisconsin -- 59 counties including Racine -- by the Department of Natural Resources. The last Watch was on Feb. 23, and lasted for three days.

(Meanwhile, wasn't it barely a week ago, on March 2 to be exact, that Gov. Doyle was assuring us that Wisconsin air quality is just fine? In fact, the headline in the Wisconsin State Journal read unambiguously: Doyle: The air's just fine).

Like the earlier Watch, this one is being blamed on elevated levels of fine particles in the air, composed of dust, soot, liquid droplets and smoke particles that are 2.5 microns or smaller coming from power plants, factories, vehicle exhaust and outdoor fires.

The Air Quality Index is forecast to reach the orange level, which is considered unhealthy for people in sensitive groups, including those with heart or lung disease, asthma, older adults and children.

Lasting until midnight Wednesday, the Watch covers the following counties: Adams, Barron, Brown, Buffalo, Calumet, Chippewa, Clark, Columbia, Crawford, Dane, Dodge, Door, Dunn, Eau Claire, Fond Du Lac, Grant, Green, Green Lake, Iowa, Jackson, Jefferson, Juneau, Kenosha, Kewaunee, La Crosse, Lafayette, Langlade, Lincoln, Manitowoc, Marathon, Marquette, Menominee, Milwaukee, Monroe, Oconto, Outagamie, Ozaukee, Pepin, Pierce, Polk, Portage, Racine, Richland, Rock, Rusk, Sauk, Shawano, Sheboygan, St. Croix, Taylor, Trempealeau, Vernon, Walworth, Washington, Waukesha, Waupaca, Waushara, Winnebago and Wood.

Our earlier story is HERE.

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