HARRISBURG, Pa., June 21, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Department of Environmental Protection and its regional air quality partnerships have forecast an orange air quality action day for ozone for Saturday, June 22 and Sunday, June 23 in the Lehigh Valley, Liberty-Clairton, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Susquehanna areas and in Mercer and Indiana counties.
On air quality action days, young children, the elderly and those with respiratory problems, such as asthma, emphysema and bronchitis, are especially vulnerable to the effects of air pollution and should limit outdoor activities.
The air quality forecast predicts Saturday and Sunday to be code orange for ozone.
The Lehigh Valley region is Berks, Lehigh and Northampton counties. The Liberty-Clairton region is the municipalities of Clairton, Glassport, Liberty, Lincoln and Port Vue, all in southeastern Allegheny County. The Philadelphia region is Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties. The Pittsburgh region is Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Washington and Westmoreland counties. The Susquehanna Valley region is Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lebanon and York counties.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's standardized air quality index uses colors to report daily air quality. Green signifies good; yellow means moderate; orange represents unhealthy pollution levels for sensitive people; and red warns of unhealthy pollution levels for all.
Ground-level ozone, a key component of smog, forms during warm weather when pollution from vehicles, industry, households and power plants "bakes" in the hot sun, making it hard for some people to breathe.
To help keep the air healthy, residents and businesses are encouraged to voluntarily limit certain pollution-producing activities by:
- Refueling cars and trucks after dusk;
- Conserve energy in your home and business; and
- Limit engine idling.
These forecasts are provided in conjunction with the Air Quality Partnership of the Delaware Valley, the Southwest Pennsylvania Air Quality Partnership, the Lehigh Valley/Berks Air Quality Partnership and the Susquehanna Valley Air Quality Partnership.
DEP also issues air quality forecasts for Altoona, Erie, Johnstown, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, State College and Williamsport.
For more information, visit www.depweb.state.pa.us, keyword: Air Quality Partnership.
Media contact: Kevin Sunday, 717-787-1323
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection