Ozone Monitoring Stations in the Oklahoma City Area
There are six stations that monitor ozone levels for the Central Oklahoma region:
- Maintained by the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality
- Memorial Road and Eastern in OKC
- N.E. 10th and Kelley in OKC
- S.E. 19th and Broadway Place in Moore
Checking the Current Ozone and Carbon Monoxide Levels
To check the current levels of ozone or carbon monoxide, which are updated hourly every day depending on the time of year, click here to link to the DEQ Web site. When you reach the page, press "Current Monitoring Data." From there, it will download the current information available at each site, depending on the time of year.
Note: O3 represents ozone. CO represents carbon monoxide. PPM stands for parts per million. The new ozone standard is a high average reading of eight consecutive hours not to exceed .075 ppm. The top number 00 indicates midnight.
The U.S. EPA, NOAA, NPS, tribal, state, and local agencies developed the AIRNow Web site to provide the public with easy access to national air quality information. The Web site offers daily AQI forecasts as well as real-time AQI conditions for over 300 cities across the US, and provides links to more detailed State and local air quality Web sites.
Air Quality Forecasts - Nationwide daily air quality forecasts provided
by State and local Air Agencies for over 300 major U.S. cities.
Air Quality Conditions - Nationwide and regional real-time ozone air
quality maps covering 46 US States and parts of Canada. These maps are updated daily every hour.
Air Quality Index (AQI) Colors
EPA has assigned a specific color to each AQI category to make it easier for people to understand quickly whether air pollution is reaching unhealthy levels in their communities. For example, the color orange means that conditions are "unhealthy for sensitive groups," while red means that conditions may be "unhealthy for everyone," and so on.
Central Oklahoma Region's Current Status with the EPA:
The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the country's air pollution standards in spring 2001, stating that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had the authority to set strict standards for ground-level ozone and soot in 1997.
But the court also said the agency's implementation policy for the ozone standard in areas where ozone exceeds the standard was unlawful, and that EPA must develop a "reasonable interpretation" of its implementation policies. Justice Antonin Scalia wrote in the court's opinion that under the law the standards must be set at a level required to protect the public health with an adequate margin of safety. Scalia did note that the law allows regulators to consider costs when determining how to implement the air quality standards.
The EPA tightened ozone standards in 1997, citing the need to protect 125 million Americans, including 35 million children, from adverse health effects caused by air pollution.
Aside from health concerns for people with respiratory and heart illnesses, violating the federal clean air standards could result in numerous requirements for the region, including a mandatory comprehensive vehicle inspection and maintenance program, more expensive and refined gasoline, and severe restraints on economic and highway development.
While it is certainly good news that Central Oklahoma is currently in compliance with the Clean Air Act, concerted efforts by citizens, businesses and governments must continue to keep our region's air clean.
current air quality in central oklahoma.
Levels of Health Concern
|Good||0 to 50||Air quality is considered satisfactory, and air pollution poses little or no risk|
|Moderate||51 to 100||Air quality is acceptable; however, for some pollutants there may be a moderate health concern for a very small number of people who are unusually sensitive to air pollution.|
|Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups||101 to 150||Members of sensitive groups may experience health effects. The general public is not likely to be affected.|
|Unhealthy||151 to 200||Everyone may begin to experience health effects; members of sensitive groups may experience more serious health effects.|
|Very Unhealthy||201 to 300||Health alert: everyone may experience more serious health effects|
|Hazardous||301 to 500||Health warnings of emergency conditions. The entire population is more likely to be affected.|