Thanks largely to a change in weather, air quality in ORCAA’s jurisdiction has improved substantially . As a result, the Olympic Region Clean Air Agency has lifted its Stage 1 Burn Ban in Thurston County effective immediately.
To ensure clean, healthful air for all, ORCAA encourages residents to be responsible and to burn only when absolutely necessary even when mandatory restrictions are lifted. Air stagnation is possible throughout the winter and early spring. Voluntary reductions on indoor and outdoor burning in the region can help prevent elevated air pollution levels and therefore reduce the need for stringent burn restrictions.
People who would like to do their part to ensure clean, healthful air might consider the following simple acts to help protect the air we breathe:
• When possible, do not use any woodstove or fireplace.
• If you do have a fire in a certified stove or fireplace, consider using manufactured logs if you must burn. They are made from recycled wood products and burn cleaner than cut wood.
• Always use your woodstove or fireplace properly to ensure the cleanest burning possible. Remember that excess smoke is always illegal. To learn more about clean burning techniques and to find a current list of certified woodstoves and fireplaces, visit www.news.orcaa.org and click on the Programs tab in the top menu and scroll down to Woodstoves.
• Limit your driving as much as possible, since vehicles are a big source of air pollution year round.
• Check air-quality forecasts and current conditions at www.news.orcaa.org. The current and forecasted air-quality conditions are available via the links on the right. To learn about the health effects of air pollution, check out the American Lung Association of Washington’s Web site at www.alaw.org.