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Pollution Level in Central Texas Sparks Ozone Action Day

Photo by Nathan Bernier, KUT News

It’s another Ozone Action Day in Central Texas. People with asthma and emphysema, the elderly and children should stay indoors today. The bad air puts Austin another step closer to possible environmental sanctions. 

High temperatures and low wind, when combined with pollution from cars and electricity production, boost ozone levels in Central Texas. That’s why Deana Altenhoff is asking everyone to do what they can to keep additional pollution out of the air today. 

"When high ozone is expected, like it is today, we’re looking to the public to help do their part by driving less if possible and using less electricity,"  said Altenhoff, executive director of Clean Air Force of Central Texas

With every high ozone day, the area gets closer to breaking clean air standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency. That standard is set by finding the average of the fourth highest ozone reading over three consecutive years.

The public health standard set by the EPA is 75 parts per billion. In Central Texas, we’re already at 72 parts per billion. Ozone season runs from April 1 to October 31, 2013.