Potential air quality impacts from prescribed burning in Kansas and Oklahoma

Air quality forecast for April 2 in Nebraska.
Air quality forecast for April 2 in Nebraska.(
Published: Apr. 1, 2021 at 3:05 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (Press Release) - An advisory of possible Moderate (yellow category) air quality impacts may occur in Nebraska east of Grand Island/U.S. 281 from April 1 at 7 p.m. to April 2 at 7 p.m. This may affect Grand Island, York, Beatrice, Lincoln, Omaha, Norfolk and South Sioux City. Some Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups (orange category) impacts are possible for the southern half of the advised area, especially overnight hours and into the morning.

During yellow category/moderate conditions, unusually sensitive groups should consider limiting prolonged outdoor exertion.  When conditions rise to the orange category, sensitive groups are advised to reduce prolonged outdoor exertion.

Current prescribed burning in Kansas and Oklahoma for the management of prairie and rangelands may affect the air quality in Nebraska. Therefore, both states monitor smoke levels and wind directions to let Nebraska know when impacts to Nebraska’s air quality may occur. Smoke advisories are issued for impacted areas by notifying the media and local health departments, and posting information on the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy’s (NDEE) webpages and social media sites. Advisories help citizens protect their health by alerting them to days where outdoor activities should be reduced or avoided to minimize exposure to smoke.

Advisories are based on data provided by the state of Kansas, smoke plume modeling, and from air quality monitors located in Omaha, Bellevue, Lincoln, Grand Island, and Scottsbluff.

The following Air Quality Index (AQI) is used. This AQI is used nationally. For an hourly update on air quality across Nebraska, visit

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