Presentation on theme: "Designing a Real-Time Air Advisory Network for Schools in the San Joaquin Valley Presented for: 2011 National Air Quality Conferences Communicating Air."— Presentation transcript:
Designing a Real-Time Air Advisory Network for Schools in the San Joaquin Valley Presented for: 2011 National Air Quality Conferences Communicating Air Quality Session March 7, 2011 San Diego, California David Lighthall, Ph.D. Health Science Advisor San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District
Key Contributors in Early RAAN Development Tim Tyner, M.S.: Associate Director, Center for Clinical and Translational Research, UCSF- Fresno; Steve Packham, Ph.D.: Utah Dept. of Environmental Quality, Division of Air Quality; Susan Lyon Stone: Ambient Standards Group, US EPA (via the Sacramento Metropolitan AQMD).
San Joaquin Valley’s Air Quality Quandary 1.Rapid population growth; 2.Very high poverty and unemployment; 3.Steady VMT increase beyond pop. growth; 4.Geophysical factors that accentuate ozone and PM 2.5 formation.
Comparable Ozone Exceedances to South Coast AQMD Via 1/7 the Emissions Density Emission Density Number of Days Above the 1997 8 hr Ozone NAAQS of 0.085 ppm
RAAN’s Predecessor: The Air Quality Flag Program 1.School-front flag program designed to enhance community awareness. Also provides guidelines for protecting students from harmful exposures 2.Daily flag raised based on predicted county-level forecasted AQI (Red = AQI > 150) a.Based on 24 hour avg. PM 2.5 or 8 hour avg. (max) ozone concentrations b.Valley Air District has used the 1997 PM 2.5 AQI (phaseout) and 2008 ozone AQI 3.Risk reduction based on daylong restriction of outdoor activities on RED flag days
Impetus Towards Real-Time Notification Stricter National Ambient Air Quality Standards Health science research: Basis for stricter NAAQS and AQIs for PM 2.5 and ozone in 2011-2012
Impetus Towards Real-Time Notification More RED Flag Days 1.Challenges posed by increased frequency of RED flag days: a.Greater pressure on schools (and individuals) to manage outdoor activities b.Increased tension between protecting and promoting student health protection = reducing exposure to outdoor air pollution promotion = increasing outdoor activities and exercise
Impetus Towards Real-Time Notification Regional Network of Hourly PM 2.5 Monitors 1.Valley Air District and CARB now operate 17 BAM PM 2.5 monitors in eight counties; 2.Provides technical basis for acceptably accurate real-time notification for most schools; 3.Comparable spatial coverage with ozone monitors.
Impetus Towards Real-Time Notification Controversy and Resistance to AQ Flag Program 1.Cancellation vs. non-cancellation of athletic events; 2.Pressure on District forecasters; 3.Resistance to county-wide Red Day forecasts when county AQ can vary widely.
Real-time Air Advisory Network (RAAN) Key functional elements 1.RAAN is a voluntary program for schools, parents, and general public: a.Email or text notices sent within 20 minutes of hourly compilation; b.Notices sent when Orange, Red, and Violet thresholds crossed; c.Notices sent when AQ improves.
Real-time Air Advisory Network (RAAN) Key functional elements, cont. 2.Outdoor activity guidelines provided in matrix form: a.Based on model developed by Sac AQMD and S. Stone of EPA. 3.Overall Goal: Provide schools with timely information linked to feasible but effective outdoor exercise policies that reduce risk to students (and residents) from short-term exposure to harmful air pollution.
Activity Recommendations for Schools on Poor Air Quality Days Air Quality Index (AQI) Chart for PM 2.5 and Ozone ACTIVITY 0-50 GOOD 51-100 MODERATE 101-150 UNHEALTHY FOR SENSITIVE GROUPS 151-200 UNHEALTHY 201-300 VERY UNHEALTHY Recess (15 min) No restrictions. Make indoor space available for students with asthma or other heart/lung conditions. Indoor recess is advised. Restrict outdoor activities to light exercise. Sensitive students should remain indoors. No outdoor activity. All activities should be moved indoors. P.E. (1 hr) No restrictions. Exceptionally sensitive individuals should limit intense activities. Any student who has asthma or other heart/lung conditions should exercise indoors or limit the intensity of outdoor exercise. Indoor P.E. is advised. Restrict outdoor activities to 15 minutes of high exertion. Sensitive students should remain indoors. No outdoor activity. All activities should be moved indoors. Athletic Practice and Training (2-4 hrs) No restrictions. Exceptionally sensitive individuals should limit intense activities. Increase rest periods and substitutions for all students. Insure that asthmatics or others with heart/lung conditions are medically managing their condition. Alteration of practice plans, including reschedule time of day or move indoors, adjust the amount of conditioning activities, limited to 1 hr of high exertion with increased rest breaks and substitutions. Sensitive students should remain indoors. No outdoor activity. All activities should be moved indoors. Scheduled Sporting Events No restrictions. Exceptionally sensitive individuals should limit intense activities. Increase rest periods and substitutions. Insure asthmatics or others with heart/lung conditions are medically managing their condition. Alteration of game plan, reschedule or relocate when possible with increase rest breaks and substitutions per CIF guidelines. Sensitive students should not participate. Event must be rescheduled or relocated.
Key Changes in Risk Assumptions Regarding the AQI 1.Outdoor activities restrictions based on AQI color for a given hour, not 8 or 24 hr averages; 2.Allows outdoor activities at cleaner times of day; 3.Results in higher frequency of restricted periods due to short-term Red level concentrations; 4.Risk reduction model: Reduce short-term exposure spikes, especial for sensitive population; 5.Assumes that a high fraction of 24 or 8 hr ambient exposure may occur at school.
Health Promotion from Outdoor Activities 1.Provides scheduling flexibility for outdoor activity on Red Days: a.Daily ozone and PM2.5 are much lower in mornings b.Air District forecasts can over-estimate pollution levels 2.Provides basis for long-term evolution towards scheduling activities at cleaner times of day
RAAN provides increased flexibility for outdoor activities on RED flag days (Based on AQI with 45 ug/mg3 as Red Threshold)
RAAN provides increased flexibility for outdoor activities on RED flag days (due to temporal variability of ozone levels)
Health Protection 1.AQI forecasts may underestimate pollution levels on a daily or hourly basis 2.Real-time “Red-Zone” notification compensates for forecasting errors 3.Real-time notification provides warning of extreme local events such as wildfires and chemical spills
RAAN provides increased protection from VERY UNHEALTHY air
Real Time Air Quality Advisory Network (RAAN) Email Notice for ARV247: Arvin This is an air quality notification from the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District. The hourly Ozone monitor in your area has determined that as of 6 PM, the O3 concentration has reached the Unhealthy (Red) zone of the Air Quality Index. Please visit CurrentConditions for a full summary of today's hour by hour air quality information as measured by the O3 monitor that is nearest to your school facility.CurrentConditions Recommended actions to protect student health during periods of poor air quality are also included on this web page under the tab labeled Outdoor Activity Guidelines. The Valley Air District encourages you to use this link to periodically check hourly O3 levels for the remainder of this day. If O3 concentration levels have dramatically risen in one hour's time, make a precautionary check of outdoor air quality at your facility and periodically check monitor values during the day. These automated Unhealthy (Red) AQI notifications to Valley schools are only sent on regular school days (Mon-Fri) between the hours of 6am and 8pm. If you have further questions about this air quality notification, please call one of the District offices and ask to speak with an outreach representative: For after-hours emergencies, please call the after-hours emergency number: (559) 284-6317 Bakersfield(661) 392-5500 Fresno(559) 230-6000 Modesto(209) 557-6400
RAAN Learnings to Date 1.Beta launch in 2010 ozone season; 2.Participating schools in all counties; 3.Tension with AQ Flag Program in some cases; 4.School risk managers and teachers appreciate the flexibility and accuracy; 5.Considerable IT staff resources necessary; 6.Strong endorsement from parents with asthmatic children; 7.Full media rollout in ozone season of 2011; 8.Plan to expand to general population.
Reference Information David Lighthall, Ph.D. Health Science Advisor San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District 559 230-6105 firstname.lastname@example.org RAAN signup: www.valleyair.org RAAN monitor page: http://www.valleyair.org/programs/raan/raan_i ndex.htm http://www.valleyair.org/programs/raan/raan_i ndex.htm