Ozone Action Days
What are Ozone Action Days?
Ozone Action Days are days during the summer when hot temperatures combine with pollution, such as hydrocarbon emissions from automobiles, to create elevated amounts of ground-level ozone, a respiratory irritant.
On Ozone Action days, everyone is urged to make choices to produce less ozone, such as not filling up your car until after 6pm (when it is cooler).
The number of “Ozone Action Days” declared varies from summer to summer. SEMCOG (Southeast Michigan Council of Governments) declares “Ozone Action Days” after consulting with meteorologists about air quality forecasts.
Who should be concerned about high Ozone?
Everyone should be concerned about high ground-level ozone levels. Ozone higher in the atmosphere is good (it protects us from sunburn!), but elevated ground-level ozone is a respiratory irritant because we breath it in. Ground-level ozone can be a health hazard, particularly for the elderly, the young, and those suffering from respiratory ailments such as emphysema or asthma. Elevated amounts of ground-level ozone can also be dangerous to anyone who works or exercise strenuously outside. Your actions on “Ozone Action Days” can help protect everyone in your community from breathing unhealthy air.
How do I find out if a day is an Ozone Action Day?
The easiest way to stay up-to-date about Ozone Action Days is to sign-up to receive email notifications from SEMCOG on their website.
To receive notifications you can also send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with “notification” in the subject line. In the body of the email please give your name, phone number and email.
SEMCOG also has a twitter and facebook which will update with Ozone Action Days.
Where do I find more information?
If you’d like more information about the conditions which cause high ground-level ozone or more on how you can help lower ozone levels, please check out SEMCOG’s Ozone Action Day web pages.
SEMCOG also provides promotional materials for Ozone Action Days and lesson plans for teachers free of charge.
What can I do to help lower ground-level Ozone?
A few actions you can take to help lower ground-level Ozone on Ozone Action Days are:
Try not to refuel on Ozone Action days. If you need to refuel on an Ozone Action day, fill up in the evening when the weather is cooler and don’t “top off” the tank.
Reduce automobile use on Ozone Action days. Plan to telecommute, carpool, use public transit, bike, or walk to work.
Choose the lawn chair over the lawn mower.