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This issue of Air Aware includes stories on ways to protect our clean air and more.
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5 ways to give the gift of clean air this season


Clean air is a gift our loved ones and neighbors all deserve.  As the holidays approach, here are five ways to help ensure everyone can breathe easy this season and in the future.
 
Don't burn wrapping paper or other trash
 
Burning household garbage is dangerous and illegal. This includes wrapping paper and boxes or packaging. Toxic fumes from burning garbage can make people sick. Burn only dry, seasoned wood this holiday season and recycle or reuse wrapping paper and other paper products.
 
Don’t burn wood when a Don’t Light Tonight is in effect
 
Through February, Yolo-Solano AQMD will issue Don’t Light Tonight advisories when air quality is forecast to be poor. Please do not burn wood when an advisory is in effect.  Our excellent weather allows families to enjoy a variety of fun outdoor activities during the winter.  Kids with asthma should be able to have fun, too. Following Don’t Light Tonight advisories helps make that possible.
 
Try riding public transit, biking, or carpooling to do your holiday shopping
 
Yolo-Solano is in severe nonattainment of federal health standards for smog. Cars and trucks are the biggest producers of smog.  By using other forms of transportation to do your holiday shopping, you are assisting in making sure our air stays clean. 
 
Gift a bike
 
By gifting a bike this holiday season, you will be helping others reduce their pollution footprint. Many of us remember the excitement we had when getting a new bike as a child. With ever-improving bicycle facilities in our cities, that gift can be special for an adult, too. Also consider donating old bikes. Local groups such as The Bike Campaign rehabilitate bikes and give them to children or adults in need of clean transportation.
 
Test drive an electric vehicle
 
Electric vehicles are not only a good way to save money on fuel, but they are critical to solving our air pollution issues. Battery technology is improving at a rapid pace and charging infrastructure is growing every day. Visit a local dealership this winter and find out how you can take advantage of the $7,500 federal tax credit plus the $2,500 state rebate.

Wood smoke survey underway


Yolo-Solano AQMD is conducting a survey to assess community wood-burning behavior and the local impacts of wood smoke.
 
The survey can be taken by Yolo-Solano residents at http://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ysair through February 15. Ten respondents selected at random will be issued $50 Amazon gift cards.
 
While Yolo-Solano experiences healthy air on the vast majority of days, air quality can degrade during the winter if calm, dry conditions cause particulate pollution to stay low within neighborhoods. The aim of the District’s community survey is to determine how often residents burn wood, the devices they use and whether wood smoke impacts their lives.
 
Particulate pollution typically has its biggest impacts near the source of combustion. The District monitors air quality at several permanent monitors throughout Yolo and Solano counties, but impacts from pollution may be more acute within certain neighborhoods.
 
Burning dry, seasoned wood in a fireplace or wood stove is legal every day in Yolo-Solano. On certain days, the District asks residents to refrain from burning wood through Don’t Light Tonight advisories.
 
To learn more about wood burning policy and health impacts, please visit http://www.ysaqmd.org/wood.

Classroom presentations on air quality available


Have you ever wanted to teach your students about our air quality?  Yolo-Solano AQMD has designed an interactive presentation aimed for elementary students that teaches children about the importance of air quality and what kids can do to help.
 
Our presentation will teach students about what pollutes our air, how it impacts us personally, and what we can do to help.  The 30-minute presentation includes hands-on activities and prizes for the students.
 
To learn more about these presentations or to schedule a presentation in your classroom, contact Katherine Madsen at kmadsen@ysaqmd.org or 530-757-3674.
Copyright © 2016 Yolo-Solano Air Quality Management District, All rights reserved.


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