Despite many parts of the Valley experiencing above normal temperatures above 90 degrees — including temperatures in the 100s in Madera — nowhere in the Valley did air quality exceed the critical 1-hour federal standard for ozone, the Valley Air District announced Monday.
Sunny days with high temperatures are the ideal climate conditions for trapping and creating ozone, and exceeding federally mandated ozone standards would slap Valley businesses and residents with monetary penalties, Valley Air District officials said.
But officials credit investment by businesses and the public for reducing emission during the recent record heat wave and avoiding an exceedance of this health-based standard.
Since 1980, smog-causing air pollution from Valley businesses has been reduced by eighty percent. This has resulted in significant improvement in air quality and a reduction in the number of exceedances of the increasingly stringent federal standards. The improvement has been dramatic; last year the Valley experienced only two exceedances of the 1-hour ozone standard compared to 56 exceedances in 1996...