A man rides his bicycle under hazy conditions and poor air quality in Alameda, Calif. on Aug. 20, 2021. Smoke from numerous Northern California wildfires affect air quality throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.Douglas Zimmerman/SFGATE
The Bay Area Air Quality Management District issued a Spare the Air alert in tandem with an air quality advisory for smoke on Sunday through Monday as meteorologists predict a light haze to linger over the region due to wildfire smoke and high regional temperatures.
The air quality district is expected to either end or extend the advisory and alert around 11 a.m. or 12 p.m. Monday, said Tina Landis, a spokesperson for the district.
“So far today what we’re worried about is the ozone or smog buildup in the eastern part of the Bay Area as well as Santa Clara Valley due to higher temperatures that mixed with vehicular smog and wildfire smoke in the air,” Landis told SFGATE.
Brooke Bingaman, a meterologist with the National Weather Service in Monterey, noted observations of near-surface smoke in the Bay Area Monday morning.
“In terms of the forecast for smoke to closer to the surface, there’s definitely going to be at least light levels of smoke today,” she said. “The problem is we’ve got more dense smoke well to the north of us, and with the high pressure just sitting there, some of that smoke could loop around.”
The light to moderate surface smoke is expected to linger around the region for the next few days, she added. The NWS does not make precise air quality forecasts more than 48 hours in advance.
Bingaman said people in the Bay Area will likely “notice the smoke.” She encouraged people to monitor the air quality resources in their area to ensure they’re keeping safe.
According to the air quality district, Spare the Air alerts “are issued when ozone pollution (smog) is forecast to reach unhealthy levels.”
“If the smell of smoke is present, it is important that Bay Area residents protect their health by avoiding exposure,” the air district said. “If possible, stay inside with windows and doors closed until smoke levels subside, if temperatures allow.”