The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has issued an air quality alert for four Minnesota cities today, citing high levels of fine particulates. Particulate levels are high throughout the state, but have reached levels that are unhealthy for sensitive groups such as asthma patients, young children and the elderly. Sensitive people are encouraged to avoid strenuous exercise and should stay indoors as much as possible. Increasing westerly winds this afternoon should dissipate the temperature inversion that has caused the particulate buildup, and the alert should be lifted then.
I am monitoring particulate levels here in Grand Portage, and while they have reached the moderate level they are beginning to trend down as of 9:30 am. I will alert the local health service if particulate levels rise above the unhealthy for sensitive groups threshold. If you have any questions on the Air Quality Index and what it means please call my office at 475-2415 ext. 35.
Here is a graphic from the MPCA link showing the Grand Portage AQI at 8:00 am this morning.