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Outdoor park with people on sunny day

First Ozone Alert of the season issued for today

SkyCast forecasts poor air quality for June 9

The Mid-America Regional Council (MARC) Air Quality Program issued an orange Ozone Alert for June 9. This alert indicates that an unhealthy level of ground-level ozone is expected.

The two most important things residents should do on Ozone Alert days are:

1. PROTECT YOUR HEALTH

Ozone pollution can cause a variety of problems in healthy adults, including chest pains, coughing, nausea, throat irritation and difficulty breathing. People who are sensitive to air pollution — such as children, seniors, and people with breathing or heart problems — should limit outdoor activity between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Everyone should consider scheduling outdoor activities before 10 a.m. or after 7 p.m.

2. REDUCE POLLUTION

More than half of all emissions that lead to ozone pollution are caused by everyday activities — such as driving and doing yard work. Residents can help reduce pollution by carpooling, taking the bus, postponing mowing and postponing refueling vehicles. Fares for regular bus routes are reduced on Ozone Alert days, and B-Cycle users can ride free (up to a 30-minute ride).

Ozone pollution is formed when emissions from vehicles, lawn and garden equipment, and other sources react in heat and sunlight. Other environmental factors — such as warm, sunny weather, low wind speeds and lack of rain — increase the likelihood of poor air quality.

MARC issues the SkyCast, the region’s daily ozone season air quality forecast, each afternoon from March 1 through Oct.31. Find the SkyCast online at AirQKC.org and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/airQKC. SkyCast information is also available via the air quality information line, 816-701-8287, and many area media outlets.