5Good News – Ozone Levels Ground Level OzoneMonitored levels are lower than they have ever beenDays Exceeding the Standard
6Ground Level OzoneWhat we typically call smog is made up of ground level ozone.VOCs + NOx + Sunlight = Ozone
7Volatile Organic Compounds A primary component of ground level ozone.Formed naturally as well as from gasoline, paint, solvents, pesticides and charcoal lighter fluid.
8Nitrogen Oxides (NOx)Light brown gas compound made up of nitrogen and oxygen.Sources of NOx include motor vehicles, power plants burning fossil fuels and coal-burning stoves.Irritates the respiratory system.
9Good Up High, Bad NearbyOzone in the stratosphere high above the Earth protects human health and the environment, but ground level ozone is a harmful pollutant to human health.
10Health Effects of Ozone Pollution Ozone interferes with normal lung functioning, aggravates respiratory diseases, and causes eye irritation.Most common symptom is pain from taking a deep breath.Long term exposure to ozone may lead to premature aging of the lungs.
11People at Risk from Ozone ElderlyChildrenAdults who are active outdoorsPeople with respiratory diseases
12Other Effects from Ozone Pollution Ozone causes damage to vegetation, degrades water quality and reduces visibility.Ozone damages plant life and is responsible for 500 million dollars in reduced crop production in the United States each year.
13Air Pollution is also Bad for our Waterways Much of the same polluting activities that form ozone also form airborne nitrogen pollution (NOx).Too much nitrogen is harmful to Bays, lakes and rivers.
14Fine Particulate Matter Particles are very small objects found in the air, including dust, dirt, soot, smoke, and liquid droplets. Our respiratory system filters out larger particles.Smaller particles get trapped in the lungs, while the smallest are so tiny they pass through the lungs into the blood stream.
15Where do Particles Come From? Primary Particlespower plants, factories, automobile exhaust, construction sites, unpaved roads, wood burning, agriculture sitesSecondary Particlesgases from burning fuels react with sunlight and water vapor and are chemically transformed into particles
16Health Effects From Particles Particles may trigger or cause significant health problems:coughing and difficult or painful breathingaggravated asthma, bronchitis, emphysemadecreased lung functionweakening of the heart, heart attackspremature death
17Transport PollutionDepending on the weather, Maryland’s air pollution can be “home grown” or significantly affected by westerly or southerly transportOn our worst air pollution days all three of these factors play an important role
18Classic Ozone Weather in the Mid-Atlantic Maryland sees its’ worst air pollution during the summer when a “Bermuda High” system sets up over the CarolinasH
19Measuring Out of State Pollution MDE works in partnership with the University of Maryland – College Park to measure and analyze pollution being transported into MarylandOn our worst days we measure ozone at 110 parts per billion (ppb) floating into the state from the WestThe 8-hour standard is 85 ppbProposed Change:The 8-hour ozone standard is 85 ppb
20Protecting Your Health Pay attention to the air quality forecastAir Quality Hotline: (410)Television and Radio newscastBaltimore Sun and USA TodayLimit your time outdoorsOzone levels are typically highest between 2:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.Particle pollution can often be high in the early morning hoursLessen your exertion level
28AirAlertAirAlert lets you know when the air is unhealthy at specific monitors near where you work or live.AirAlert lets you be the first to know when air quality is reaching unhealthy levels so you can protect your health or the health of someone you care about.We consider it an early warning system for your lungs.
29Air Quality HotlineProvides real-time and forecasted Air Quality Index informationAutomated system directly tied into real-time air monitorsMeteorologists provide daily input of air quality forecast
30EPA’s Real-Time and Forecast Air Quality Data Ozone MapsAQI Forecasts
31Air Quality Action Days Program Notifies the public about poor air quality.Air quality message communicated daily through faxes, s, air quality hotlines and the media.Encourages individuals and organizations to protect their health and take voluntary actions to help reduce ground level ozone
32Individual Actions Limit driving and refuel cars after dark Share a ride, telework from home, or use transitConsolidate trips and errandsAvoid using gas-powered lawn equipmentPut off any painting until laterAvoid using aerosol products
33Clean Air PartnersClean Air Partners is a public-private partnership chartered by the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG) and the Baltimore Metropolitan Council (BMC).The primary objective of Clean Air Partners is to promote easy and effective voluntary actions that individuals can take to reduce production of and exposure to air pollution.To learn more, visit