Environmental Health - Outdoor Air/Open Burning

Picture of factory filling the air with smoke.Program Overview

  • Provide guidance to public inquiries regarding outdoor air quality concerns.
  • Investigate complaints of open burning and initiate enforcement to terminate illegal burning.

To determine whether the air quality poses a health risk for some or all individuals, we rely on the Air Quality Index, or AQI. This is a nationally uniform index that reports information about common air pollutants, including particles from wildfire smoke. This index is updated throughout the day.  

People with chronic lung or heart conditions, older adults, children and teenagers, pregnant women and outdoor workers are most at-risk for adverse health effects from wildfire smoke. However, when the AQI reaches 200 or above (Purple/Brown), all of us are at elevated risk. 

Color Air Quality Index Levels of Health Concern Numerical Value Meaning
  Good 0 to 50 Air quality is considered satisfactory, and air pollution poses little or no risk.
  Moderate 51 to 100 Air quality is acceptable; however, for some pollutants there may be a moderate health concern for a very small number of people who are unusualy sensitive to air pollution.
  Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups 101 to 150 Members of sensitive groups may experience health effects. The general public is not likely to be affected.
  Unhealthy 151 to 200 Everyone may begin to experience health effects; members of sensitive groups may experience more serious health effects.
  Very Unhealthy 201 to 300 Health alert: everyone may experience more serious health effects.
  Hazardous 301 to 500 Health warnings of emergency conditions. The entire population is more likely to be affected.