05 December 2012
Oh, What a Beautiful (cough!) Morning!
Today, for the first time this season, our particulate matter has reached the "unhealthy" level (see image) which means the air is unsafe to breathe. People will get the sniffles, will cough, will have all kinds of problems but just assume it's a seasonal cold. Why? Because it seems no one ever wants to mention our air pollution -- bad for the "snowbird" industry (people vacationing in Phoenix away from snowy climates).
We went to an outdoor festival last weekend. One of the vendors was commenting on the "perfect" weather (near-record-breaking high temperatures and, yes, bad pollution) and said "We have nothing to complain about." My reply: "Nothing except all the air pollution." The vendor shrugged her shoulders. So, warm polluted weather is better than snow. Whatever.
Although it doesn't seem to make the local television news, our daily newspaper did a multi-part story on our air pollution earlier this year. I suggest you read this before coming to visit the metro Phoenix area this winter.