Wood Stove Curtailment Forecasting in Portola, California

Submitted by SonomaTechEditor on
Wood Stove Curtailment Forecasting in Portola, California
Northern Sierra Air Quality Management District (NSAQMD)
Residential wood smoke can lead to elevated concentrations of fine particulate matter (PM<sub>2.5</sub>) in many locations during the winter, especially during periods with limited atmospheric mixing and dispersion. Communities in mountainous regions can be particularly susceptible to these conditions as the terrain blocks stronger winds, allowing temperature inversions to trap pollutants near the surface.<br>

Meteorologists at Sonoma Technology assist the city of Portola—located in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California—during the winter by issuing wood stove curtailment alerts during periods of poor dispersion. This helps reduce the impact of residential wood smoke on PM<sub>2.5</sub> concentrations. Initial results indicate that targeted wood stove curtailments helped reduce the highest PM<sub>2.5</sub> concentrations during periods when dispersion was poor in Portola during the 2022-23 season, compared to the three previous seasons. As a result, Portola experienced fewer days with Air Quality Index (AQI) levels in the Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups (USG) and Unhealthy categories.
Air Quality
Portola, California
Portola, California

Steve T. Irwin

Submitted by rspencerdev on
Steve T. Irwin