Upcoming State and Local Air Quality Awareness
To be added to the 2014 Air Quality Awareness Week list of events, please contact Debra Lee at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Clean Air Fair: The Environmental Protection Commission of Hillsborough County hosts the 13th annual event, which is free to all exhibitors and visitors, and will be held on Thursday, May 1st, in Downtown Tampa, FL from 11:30-1:30pm. The fair will be held in the open-air Poe Plaza. It aims to promote a healthy environment through educating the public on air quality and state of the environment, and also seeks to recognize and promote environmentally-conscious organizations and companies for the great strides they make in the community. The FREE lunchtime event will include a variety of environmental and community exhibitors, along with health information, complimentary refreshments and food items, prize drawings and live music.
Illinois Partners for Clean Air has organized activities to be implemented in the Chicago area by local businesses, as well as at the state headquarters of the IL EPA. Plans include a brownbag lunch with a movie and slideshow presentation, incentives to sign-up for AQ forecasts through EnviroFlash, and plenty of giveaways for other events. http://www.cleantheair.org/air-quality-information/air-quality-awareness-week-april-28-may-2-2014.
For citizens in the Chicago area, IL PFCA has created an air quality quiz to test the entrant’s AQ IQ and have a chance to win MLB tickets. Citizens can play via our Facebook page.
For residents and commuters in Maryland, a large number of programs and events exist to help reduce our impact on the air we breathe. The month of May has been designated Clean Commute Month and a number of promotional events take place leading up to and during the month including Bike to Work Day on Friday, May 16, 2014. Teleworking, carpooling, and walking are also great options to do your share for cleaner air.
Furthermore, the Maryland Green Registry is a free way to promote your business or organization, save money and demonstrate your environmental commitment. Collectively, members have saved over $74 million annually through sustainable practices. Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) is a member of the Maryland Green Registry and takes pride in leading by example. For more on MDE’s sustainable practices, take a look at our informational video at http://youtu.be/uAyC-MAMnjk.
New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) is kicking off Air Quality Awareness Week, April 28 – May 2, 2014 (http://www.nj.gov/dep/aqaweek/). This week emphasizes that you can protect your health, as well as the health of others, by paying attention to your local air quality and living a healthier lifestyle, while still enjoying outdoor activities and saving some money, all at the same time!
By making simple changes to your everyday routine, such as not letting your car idle, keeping your vehicle’s maintenance up-to-date, combining automobile trips, using environmentally friendly cleaning products, avoiding painting or cleaning on poor air quality days, and limiting outdoor activities on these days, you can reduce air pollution, lessen your impact on your health and the environment, and likely save money in the process.
NJDEP DAILY MESSAGES
New Jersey’s Air Quality Awareness Week 2014 focuses on educating the public about air pollutants and the Air Quality Index (AQI). The messages include examples of the sources of the pollutants, associated control measures, recent actions taken by New Jersey to control the pollutant, and how the AQI relates to air quality and human health. The week also highlights how even our daily routine can impact our environment. As a follow-up, there are tips and suggestions to reduce ozone and fine particle pollution. All of the week’s air quality facts and actions can be found at http://www.nj.gov/dep/aqaweek/. This site also highlights area or local events scheduled during and around Air Quality Awareness Week.
USEPA AND NOAA WEBSITES
New Jersey’s efforts coincide with a National initiative by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The federal agencies’ facts can be found at https://www.epa.gov/airnow/airaware/. Follow this effort on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/airnow) and Twitter (http://twitter.com/airnow).
CHECK YOUR AIR QUALITY ANY DAY
Remember to check your local air quality on the NJDEP’s Air Monitoring website (http://www.njaqinow.net/) or by subscribing to EnviroFlash, (www.enviroflash.info), an online alert system, to receive air quality information straight to your email inbox or cell phone.
USEPA’s new mobile application, AIRNow (https://www.epa.gov/apps/airnow.html), provides real-time location-specific air quality information that you can use to protect your health when planning your day.
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From April 28 to May 2, 2014, DEP and Governor Tom Corbett are celebrating Air Quality Awareness Week by asking Pennsylvanians to renew their commitment to protecting air quality. Gov. Corbett has issued a proclamation for Air Quality Awareness Week and DEP has developed a recommended plan for people to learn about air quality and how it affects their lives .Learn more.
Virginia will take part in a number of activities in observance of Air Quality Awareness Week, along with preparations for this year’s ozone season. Starting on April 28, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) will send notices to all staff and major stakeholder with tips for how to reduce air pollution throughout the week and beyond. For the coming ozone season, DEQ will have a presence at the 2014 Virginia State Fair and the Fort Lee Earth and Safety Day. These events will feature an air quality exhibit demonstrating the effects of manmade air pollution.
NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, VA has a long history of studying our atmosphere to better understand air quality. NASA is working to improve the use of satellites to monitor air quality for public health and to better understand what’s happening with the air quality at the surface of the Earth, where we breathe. Throughout Air Quality Awareness Week, check NASA Langley’s Science Directorate page for classroom resources and activities and view our daily posts about how NASA is helping to better understand the air we breathe: http://science-edu.larc.nasa.gov/.
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources will again host a “Tree of Pledges” activity in DNR offices for staff. Staff members write a pledge (i.e. bike to work, turn off lights when leaving a room, carpool when possible, etc.) to reduce their air emissions on a leaf and add it to the Tree of pledges. This activity visually shows that every action, no matter how small, matters. Even seemingly small actions may not appear to make a difference to air quality, but over time and in combination with others doing the same or similar actions CAN add up to big change!