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Air Quality Department, Bob Huhn, PIO
1001 North Central Avenue
Phoenix, AZ  85004
Ph 602-506-6713

PM-2.5 High Pollution Advisory Friday

MARICOPA COUNTY (January 10, 2013) -The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality is issuing a High Pollution Advisory (HPA) for Friday, Jan. 11 for fine Particulate Matter-2.5.


The Maricopa County Air Quality Department also issued a “No Burn Day” restriction for Friday for residences and businesses and will send inspectors into the community to enforce the restriction. This restriction also includes individuals and businesses that have burn permits for open burning.


The HPA is being issued because a significant front is expected to pass through the Valley late Thursday and produce very cold conditions Friday and throughout the weekend, potentially triggering the widespread use of fireplaces beginning Friday. 


“Forecasts are calling for extremely cold air to enter on Friday and Saturday,” said ADEQ Air Quality Director Eric Massey.  “We expect these cold temperatures to trigger a significant increase in the amount of wood-burning activity which will result in high concentrations of PM2.5.”


ADEQ recommends that children and adults with respiratory problems limit outdoor activities and that the general public minimize outdoor activity on Friday.  


The Maricopa County Trip Reduction program and Valley Metro Business Services request employers activate their HPA Plan. Residents and employers are asked to use these tips to help make the air healthier to breathe:  

  • Eliminate fireplace and wood stove use.
  • Drive as little as possible: car pool, use public transit or telecommute. For information on transportation alternatives, visit Valley Metro:
  • Recreational off-highway vehicle (OHV) use is prohibited during the advisory period.
  • The use of leaf blowers on governmental properties is prohibited during the advisory period.
  • Avoid using gas-powered lawn and garden equipment.
  • Avoid activities that generate dust, such as driving on dirt roads.
  • Stabilize loose soils.


PARTICULATE MATTER BACKGROUND: State and county agencies measure PM-10 and PM-2.5,

which are extremely small solid particles and liquid droplets found circulating in the air. PM, or

particulate matter, comes from either combustion (cars, industry, woodburning) or dust stirred up into the

air. High levels of PM are typically created when the air is especially stagnant or especially windy.

PM-10 stands for particulate matter measuring 10 microns or less. PM-2.5 stands for particulate matter

measuring 2.5 microns or less. To put this in perspective, one strand of human hair is 70-100 microns in






The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality [ADEQ] provides a daily forecast for air quality. When conditions exist, ADEQ will issue high pollution advisories, health watches and alerts. Daily air quality forecasts are on ADEQ’s Web site at  or by calling (602)771-2367. Those interested in receiving the air quality forecast via email can subscribe to

ADEQ’s forecast list at and text alerts at


The Maricopa County Air Quality Department issues No Burn Day restrictions based on a High Pollution Advisory or Health Watch.  These No Burn Day restrictions typically occur during the winter months.  To find out if any burn restrictions are in place, call 602-506-6400 or visit .  Information is given in both English and Spanish.


To learn more about the Maricopa County residential woodburning restriction ordinance, view a copy on our website  Click on the direct link to the residential woodburning restriction ordinance:


Valley Metro/RPTA provides eco-friendly public transit options to residents of greater Phoenix and Maricopa County, including a clean-fuel bus fleet, low-emissions light rail, online carpool matching and bus trip mapping, and bicycle and telecommuting assistance. Funding is provided by local, state and federal revenues and administered by a board of 15 governments working to improve and regionalize the public transit system.


Media contacts:


Arizona Department of Environmental Quality [ADEQ]

Mark Shaffer - 602-771-2215 desk / 480-433-9551 cell


Maricopa County Air Quality Department

Bob Huhn – 602-506-6713 desk / 602-526-7307 cell


Valley Metro

Susan Tierney - 602-262-4668 desk / 602-292-4093 cell


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