NRDC Study To Show Wildfire Smoke Extends Well Beyond States In Flames, Health Concerns To Be Outlined

Oct 23, 2013, 10:30 ET from Natural Resources Defense Council, Washington, D.C.

Worst-Hit States will be ranked: AL, AR, CO, FL, GA, IL, IN, IA, KS, LA, MI, MN, MS, MO, NE, NM, OK, SC, TN, TX; Climate Change Will Add to Drought, Temperatures that Increase Wildfire Activity

WASHINGTON, Oct. 23, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Wildfires will worsen in the future with climate change, harming not only the states in which they take place, but also a much wider part of the United States due to the spread of wildfire smoke that can travel up to hundreds of miles, according to a new analysis by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) that will be released at 1:30 p.m. EDT Thursday (October 24, 2013).

The report will outline how, if action is not taken to address climate change, the risks of wildfires fed by drought and higher temperatures will increase.  The report details the dangerous health impacts of wildfire smoke, and also outlines steps that can be taken by governments and individuals to address the problem.  

The NRDC report will rank every state in terms of population living in areas affected by medium to high-density wildfire smoke, based on recent data. The states with the largest populations in areas affected by smoke conditions for a week or more include (in alphabetical order):  Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas.


  • Dr. Kim Knowlton, DrPH, senior scientist, Health and Environment Program, Natural Resources Defense Council, and assistant clinical professor, Environmental Health Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University; and
  • Dr. Patrick L. Kinney, professor, Environmental Health Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, and director, Columbia Climate and Health Program.

Thursday (October 24, 2013).

1:30 p.m.  EDT.

You can join this live, phone-based news conference (with full, two-way Q&A) at 1:30 p.m. EDT on October 24, 2013 by dialing 1 (800) 860-2442. Ask for the "U.S. wildfire smoke impact report" telenews event.

A streaming audio replay of the news event will be available on the Web at  as of 5 p.m. EDT on October 24, 2013.

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is an international nonprofit environmental organization with more than 1.4 million members and online activists. Since 1970, our lawyers, scientists, and other environmental specialists have worked to protect the world's natural resources, public health, and the environment. NRDC has offices in New York City, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Livingston, Montana, and Beijing. Visit us at and follow us on Twitter @NRDC.

SOURCE Natural Resources Defense Council, Washington, D.C.