Understanding the Air Quality Index

The purpose of the Air Quality Index or AQI is to help you understand what local air quality means to your health. To make it easier to understand, the AQI is divided into six categories. Each category corresponds to a different level of health concern. The six levels of health concern and what they mean are provided in the chart below. EPA has assigned a specific color to each AQI category to make it easier for people to understand quickly whether air pollution is reaching unhealthy levels in their communities. For example, the color orange means that conditions are “unhealthy for sensitive groups,” while red means that conditions may be “unhealthy for everyone,” and so on.
 
Colors
Air Quality Index
(AQI) Values
Levels of Health Concern
Meaning
...as symbolized
by this color:
when the AQI
is in this range:
...air quality conditions are:
the health implications are:
Green
0 to 50
Good
Air quality is considered satisfactory, and air pollution poses little or no risk.
Yellow
51 to 100
Moderate
Air quality is acceptable; however, for some pollutants there may be a moderate health concern for a very small number of people who are unusually sensitive to air pollution.
Orange
101 to 150
Unhealthy for
Sensitive Groups
Members of sensitive groups may experience health effects. The general public is not likely to be affected.
Red
151 to 200
Unhealthy
Everyone may begin to experience health effects; members of sensitive groups may experience more serious health effects.
Purple
201 to 300
Very Unhealthy
Health alert: everyone may experience more serious health effects.
Maroon
301 to 500
Hazardous
Health warnings of emergency conditions. The entire population is more likely to be affected.

For information on Baton Rouge’s air quality call: Ozone forecast 225-219-0857 or AQI hotline 225-219-3543.

 

Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality 602 N. Fifth Street Baton Rouge, LA 70802
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