Air quality alert issued due to wildfire smoke, now through Saturday, September 2

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) is issuing an air quality alert for southwest, western and central Minnesota, effective through 6 a.m. Saturday, September 2.The affected area includes Alexandria, Brainerd, Marshall, Ortonville, St. Cloud, and Worthington. Also impacted are the Tribal Nations of Mille Lacs and Upper Sioux.

Canadian wildfire smoke continues across much of southern, western and central Minnesota. Air pollution monitors are showing an increase in fine particles as thicker smoke moves north from northwest Iowa into the southwestern portion of Minnesota. Smoke will persist and move northward as southerly winds develop across western Minnesota. During this time, fine particle pollution is expected to remain at, or above, a level that is considered unhealthy for sensitive groups. Showers and thunderstorms will approach western and northwestern Minnesota this evening helping to disperse smoke in some areas. Southwest and central Minnesota will continue with higher fine particle levels through the overnight hours until precipitation arrives. By Saturday morning, most areas of smoke will be pushed south and dissipated.

People whose health is affected by unhealthy air quality:  There are people who are more likely to be affected when fine particle pollution reaches an unhealthy level.

  • People who have asthma or other breathing conditions like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • People who have heart disease or high blood pressure
  • Children and older adults
  • People of all ages who are doing extended or heavy, physical activity like playing sports or working outdoors

Health effects: Air pollution can aggravate heart and cardiovascular disease as well as lung diseases like asthma and COPD. When the air quality is unhealthy, people with these conditions may experience symptoms like chest pain, shortness of breath, wheezing, coughing, or fatigue. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, use your inhalers as directed and contact your health care provider.

Take Precautions: Everyone should take precautions when the air quality is unhealthy.

  • Take it easy and listen to your body.
  • Limit, change, or postpone your physical activity level.
  • If possible, stay away from local sources of air pollution like busy roads and wood fires.
  • If you have asthma or other breathing conditions like COPD make sure you have your relief/rescue inhaler with you.
  • People with asthma should review and follow guidance in their written asthma action plan. Make an appointment to see your health provider if you don’t have an asthma action plan. 

Pollution reduction tips: The main sources of fine particle pollution are combustion activities. Conserving energy and buying clean, renewable energy are great lifestyle choices to help reduce overall pollution.

  • Reduce vehicle trips.
  • Encourage use of public transport, or carpool, when possible.
  • Postpone use of gasoline powered lawn and garden equipment on air alert days. Use battery or manual equipment instead.
  • Avoid burning wood.

For information on current air quality conditions in your area and to sign up for daily air quality forecasts and alert notifications by email or text message, visit http://www.pca.state.mn.us/aqi. You can find additional information about health and indoor and outdoor air quality at www.beairawaremn.org.

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You’re Invited! Great Lakes Day – September 19th!

Minnesota Conservation Federation –

I would like to personally invite you to Michigan United Conservation Clubs Great Lakes Day at the Capitol, Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017.

  • 10:00 – 11:00 a.m. – Registration and Orientation (Senate Committee Rooms 402 & 403
  • 11:15 a.m. – Noon – Rally on the East Lawn (Front Steps) of the Capitol
  • Noon – 2:00 p.m. – Networking Lunch (Capitol Building, 1st Floor, North and West Wings)
  • Ongoing: Meetings with Legislators (Anderson House Office Building & Binsfeld Senate Office Building). You will receive your meeting schedule when you register on the day of the event.

Since 1937, MUCC has worked to conserve, protect and enhance Michigan’s natural resources and outdoor heritage. Throughout our history, we have often partnered with you and your organization to make positive changes for our great outdoors.

Great Lakes Day at the Capitol is a day to connect our membership with the policy work that we do.  I would also like to connect you, our valued partner, with our members and give you an opportunity to visit with sportsmen and women representing conservation organizations from across the state of Michigan.

I hope you will be able to join us as we work to make Michigan a premier destination for hunting, fishing, trapping and outdoor recreation. MUCC looks forward to working with you as we protect and advance our Great Lakes.

Please RSVP no later than Sept. 10, 2017 to abur@mucc.org or  http://www.mucc.org/ashleybur/great_lakes_day or call Ashley Bur at 517-346-6456.

Sincerely,

Daniel Eichinger

Executive Director

 

Michigan United Conservation Clubs
http://www.mucc.org/

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Applications Open for Environmental Quality Board Members from Congressional Districts 1, 2, 7 and 8

The Environmental Quality Board (EQB or Board) is seeking applicants from the 1st, 2nd, 7th and 8th Congressional Districts to serve 4-year terms and help shape an environmental agenda for the state of Minnesota. We are looking for candidates who have a passion for the state’s environment, or who have knowledge of Environmental Review or Permitting. If you are interested in serving alongside 9 state agency Commissioners and 8 citizens from across the state on a Board tasked with public engagement, interagency coordination, and oversight of the state’s Environmental Review program, apply by September 15, 2017.

How to Apply

You can learn more about the EQB, our work and current members at our website,
http://www.eqb.state.mn.us. You can find more details about being a Board member and information on how to apply at the Minnesota Secretary of State’s website, https://commissionsandappointments.sos.state.mn.us/agency/details/107. Apply by September 15, 2017 to make sure that your application is considered.

Contact Us

Will Seuffert, Executive Director
Minnesota Environmental Quality Board
will.seuffert@state.mn.us
651-757-2766

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