Indoor Air Quality During Smoke Events

Wildland fires are a major source of fine particulate (PM2.5) and can significantly impact communities. Much attention has been focused on smoke impacts to outdoor air quality, however recent work has evaluated the indoor air quality impacts that wildland fire smoke can have. In February 2017 the Nature Conservancy Hosted a webinar for the National Wildfire Coordinating Group's Smoke Committee to address this subject area. Information from that presentation is available below:

Indoor Air Quality During Wildland Fires: Experience and Research: A webinar containing two presentations on indoor air quality. The first, from Kris Ray, evaluates indoor air quality during very high ambient PM2.5 concentrations at the Colville Reservation in Washington State, which resulted from the 2015 wildfire season. The second presentation, from Shelly Miller, evaluates the impact of indoor air cleaning devices during wildland fires. 

Public Communication Resources mentioned in the Webinar

Air Resource Advisor Fact Sheet: A document intended to provide Air Resource Advisors from out of the area information to aid them in their duties and help them understand the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation and their air quality program (2016).

Managing Buildings for Cleaner Air: Document outlining several simple methods to manage homes or offices to minimize the concentration of inside smoke, from the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation Emergency Services Operation Center (2015).

Masks for Smoky Conditions: Document on the use of masks for smoky conditions, from the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation Air Quality Program (2016).

Wildfire Smoke Brochure from the Colville Tribe Air Quality: Wildfire smoke brochure with a brief explanation of the air quality index, smoke effects, and key contact information.

Wildfire Preparedness Poster: Fire preparedness and explanation of fire danger levels from the Colville Confederated Tribes (2016).

Publications mentioned in the Webinar

Henderson DE, Milford JB, Miller SL. 2006. Prescribed Burns and Wildfires in Colorado: Impacts of Mitigation Measures on Indoor Air Particulate Matter. Journal of Air and Waste Management Association. 55: 1516-1526

Keating M, Benedict K, Evans R, Jenkins S, Mannshardt E, Stone SL. Interpreting and Communicating Short-Term Air Sensor Data. EM, Air and Waste Management Association. November 2016 Issue.

Barn PK, Elliott CT, Allen RW, Kosatsky T, Rideout K, Henderson SB, 2016. Portable air cleaners should be at the forefront of the public health response to landscape fire smoke. Environmental Health 15:116.