Subscribe | E-Editions | River News 75 | Super Shopper - FREE | About Us | Contact Us | FREE Classified Items Under $50
The Northwoods River News | Rhinelander, Wisconsin

Flanders Realty Group

home : community : community news
June 15, 2019

5/4/2019 7:30:00 AM
Report: Northern Wisconsin's air quality, already good, improves for ozone

The American Lung Association's 2019 "State of the Air" report found air quality in central and northern Wisconsin earned perfect grades for the nation's most widespread air pollutants. The annual air quality "report card" tracks Americans' exposure to unhealthful levels of ozone and particle pollution, both of which can be deadly. The 20th annual report found the counties in northern and central Wisconsin enjoy near pristine air, earning them straight As in the report. All were monitored for ozone; all but one (Marathon County) is also monitored for particle pollution.

"Residents should be aware that while many Wisconsinites thankfully don't have to worry about their air quality, many others are still being exposed to air pollution. Potential sources include emissions from power plants and vehicles and, hotter weather as a result of climate change, placing our health and lives at risk," Dona Wininsky of the American Lung Association in Wisconsin said in a press release announcing the State of the Air report results.

This year's report covers the most recent quality-assured data available collected by states, cities, counties, tribes and federal agencies in 2015-2017. Notably, those three years were the hottest recorded in global history.

Each year the "State of the Air" provides a report card on the two most widespread outdoor air pollutants, ozone and particle pollution. The report analyzes particle pollution in two ways: through average annual particle pollution levels and short-term spikes.

Both ozone and particle pollution are dangerous to public health and can increase the risk of premature death and other serious health effects such as lung cancer, asthma attacks, cardiovascular damage, and developmental and reproductive harm, the release states.

Ozone Pollution

This report documents how warmer temperatures brought by climate change make ozone more likely to form and harder to clean up, it continues.

This year's report showed that ozone levels increased in most cities nationwide, in large part due to the record-breaking global heat experienced in the three years tracked in the report.

"Another factor for parts of Wisconsin is the 'Chicago effect,' - pollution that drifts north from south of the border, negatively impacting the state's lakefront communities," Wininsky said, "In these counties it is critically important that people be aware of that pollution, so they can protect themselves. Ozone is unhealthy, regardless of the source."

Particle Pollution

The 2019 report also found year-round particle pollution levels slightly lower than the 2018 report, but that an increase in 24-hour particle pollution levels indicates higher spikes of limited duration.

Nationwide, the best progress in this year's report came in reducing year-round levels of particle pollution.

Many of these spikes can be directly linked to weather patterns like drought or to events like wildfires, which are increasing in frequency and intensity in many areas due to climate change and high emissions from wood-burning devices, the release states.

While the report examined data from 2015-2017, this 20th annual report online provides information on air pollution trends back to the first report.

To learn more about the region's county rankings, as well as air quality data from across Wisconsin and the nation, read the 2019 "State of the Air" report at

Article Comment Submission Form
Please feel free to submit your comments.

Article comments are not posted immediately to the Web site. Each submission must be approved by the Web site editor, and meet the comment guidelines (see "Comment Guidelines" at right). There may be a delay of 24-48 hours for any submission while the web site editor reviews and approves it.

Note: All information on this form is required. Your telephone number and email address is for our use only, and will not be attached to your comment.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Last Name:
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.

Advanced Search
search sponsored by

Subscription Login

Today's Circulars
Print-N-Save Coupons
Order photo reprints

Advertising Information

Community Connections
Submit to Newspaper...

Ced Vig's books for sale
Kris Gilbertson's 'I Recall...'


Facebook | All Things | Wisconsin Lottery | The Lakeland Times - affiliate | Winter Road Conditions | Snow/Trail Conditions

The Northwoods River News | Walker Communications, LLC
232 S. Courtney Street, Rhinelander, WI 54501 | Office (715) 365-6397 | Fax (715) 365-6361

Corporate billing office: The Lakeland Times / Lakeland Printing Inc. | P.O. Box 790, Minocqua, WI 54548 | (715) 356-5236 | Fax (715) 358-2121
Members of the Wisconsin Newspaper Association, Wisconsin Community Papers, Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce, Minocqua Area Chamber of Commerce

Site Design and Content | Copyright 2019 1up!

Software © 1998-2019 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved