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DEC: Air quality advisory in effect for Hudson Valley

July 2, 2018 02:45 pm

The state Department of Environmental Conservation issued an air quality advisory for the Hudson Valley and other locations throughout the state today warning certain people to limit outdoor activity.

The DEC issued an advisory for Long Island, New York City Metro, lower and upper Hudson Valley, Eastern Lake Ontario and Western New York due to high quantities of ground-level ozone in the air. The advisory will be in effect until 11 p.m.

“People, especially young children, those who exercise outdoors, those involved in vigorous outdoor work and those who have respiratory disease such as asthma should consider limiting strenuous outdoor physical activity when ozone levels are the highest — generally afternoon to early evening,” according to the DEC advisory. “When outdoor levels of ozone are elevated, going indoors will usually reduce your exposure. Individuals experiencing symptoms such as shortness of breath, chest pain or coughing should consider consulting their doctor.”

The upper Hudson Valley could expect pollutants to reach an Air Quality Index level of 110, according to forecasts from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Index levels between 101 and 150 are considered unhealthy to sensitive groups including people with lung disease such as asthma, older adults, children and teenagers and people who are active outdoors, according to the EPA.

“Summer heat can lead to the formation of ground-level ozone, a major component of photochemical smog,” according to the DEC advisory. “Automobile exhaust and out-of-state emission sources are the primary sources of ground-level ozone and are the most serious air pollution problems in the northeast. This surface pollutant should not be confused with the protective layer of ozone in the upper atmosphere.”

The DEC is advising people, for the purposes of reducing the amount of ground level ozone, to reduce automobile and public transit travel today as much as possible.

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The DEC issued similar advisories over the weekend when hot and humid temperatures first hit the region.