The NWS mission is to provide weather data, forecasts, warnings, and decision support services for the protection of life and property and the enhancement of the national economy. You may be asking yourself, how does air quality fit into this mission? Scientific research has demonstrated a broad range of health effects associated with wildfire smoke. In recognition of recent research and wildfire smoke events, the NWS Missoula office has played a larger role in helping to facilitate a unified message to the public during smoke episodes. This talk will provide an overview of air quality coordination efforts from a NWS perspective, looking into the present and the future.
Furthermore, the NWS has expanded efforts to coordinate air stagnation episodes in recent years. Valley inversions, especially during the fall, impact local air quality and influence prescribed burn operations. A brief overview of the air stagnation program will be discussed.