MORPC’s Air Quality Awareness Program seeks to address our region’s air quality issues, and to inform and alert the public, local governments, businesses, organizations and individuals of the actions they can take to protect public health and reduce air pollution.
Air Quality Awareness Week May 2-6
MORPC will be marking National Air Quality Awareness Week, May 2-6, 2016, with daily social media messages to inform residents about steps Central Ohioans can take to reduce air pollution. Poor air quality affects everyone, however some individuals are particularly sensitive to air pollutants, including children and adults who are active outdoors, the elderly, and those with chronic respiratory diseases such as asthma.
“National Air Quality Awareness Week is a reminder that everyone can pitch in to improve regional air quality,” stated MORPC’s Air Quality Program Supervisor, Evelyn Ebert. “MORPC will be highlighting actions Central Ohioans can take to improve air quality on our Facebook and Twitter pages, so be sure to like and follow MORPC to learn more.”
Be Air Aware - Sign up for Free Air Quality Alerts
MORPC monitors ground-level ozone and particle pollution levels, and issues daily air quality forecasts using the Air Quality Index (AQI). The AQI tells you how clean or polluted the air is, and the associated health effects. MORPC will issue an Air Quality Alert when AQI values are expected to reach above 100, meaning that air quality is considered to be unhealthy for sensitive groups of people, and then for everyone as AQI values get higher.
On Air Quality Alert days, sensitive groups including active children, older adults, and those with breathing or heart conditions can reduce their exposure by planning outdoor activities in the morning when ozone levels are generally lower. They can also avoid strenuous outdoor activities, such as running or working in the garden, during afternoon hours when ozone levels are generally higher.
- Sign up for Air Quality Alerts via email or text message
- Call the Air Quality hotline at 1-888-666-1009
- Follow MORPC on Facebook or Twitter
Protect Your Health and Improve Air Quality
Use MORPC's Take Five for Clean Air checklist for actions to protect public health and reduce air pollution. Local governments, businesses, organizations and individuals can choose from a menu of voluntary actions to implement on Air Quality Alert days and in daily practices. Commit to five actions and MORPC will recognize your local government, business, or organization on our website. Clean air is one component of a healthy, sustainable community. Check out GreenSpot for another regional commitment to help you meet broader sustainability goals.
Use Alternative Transportation
Motor vehicle emissions contribute to poor air quality in Central Ohio. Whenever possible, avoid driving alone and explore transportation options that will save money at the pump, provide healthy exercise, and reduce air pollution. It all adds up to cleaner air.
- Share a ride to work by contacting MORPC's RideSolutions at 888-742-RIDE.
- Take a COTA bus.
- Bike or walk to nearby destinations. The Central Ohio Greenways and Columbus Metro Bike Map provide information on suggested walking and biking routes.
- Use the CoGo bike share service.
- Use the car2go car share service.