Release 08-64
July 11, 2008

    Dimitri Stanich
ARB strengthens its health warning associated with wildfire smoke

SACRAMENTO: With wildfires continuing to burn, high temperatures lingering and lack of on-shore winds, state public health officials are advising people to limit their physical activities until particulate matter levels start dropping.

Air quality experts with the California Air Resources Board will be available all day today to interview on the health effects posed by the wildfires. In particular, ARB is strongly recommending that young athletes, runners and others do not exercise when air quality is deemed unhealthy by public health officials. Further, people with heart and lung disease, including asthma, should protect themselves from smoke by staying indoors with air conditioning turned to "recirculate". This is particularly important in areas of heavy smoke .

The Air Quality Index, or AQI, is a tool people can use to take action when particle levels reach unhealthy ranges.

To learn about current air quality conditions in your community using the AQI, go to: .

For ARB's health advisory for smoke, please go here.

To schedule an interview, call (916) 322-2990.

The Air Resources Board is a department of the California Environmental Protection Agency. ARB's mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy. The ARB oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health based air quality standards.

The energy challenge facing California is real. Every Californian needs to take immediate action to reduce energy consumption. For a list of simple ways you can reduce demand and cut your energy cost, see our web site at