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Drought And Wildfires Move Utah’s Air Quality Into Unhealthy Levels

Extreme drought conditions across Utah have combined with smoke from western wildfires in California, Idaho, Washington and Oregon to create unhealthy air quality.

University of Utah graduate student Kai Wilmot says he is concerned about what we’re going to be looking at from August into September. He is expecting the air to only get worse based on trends he and his team are tracking.


Wilmost says individuals can help improve air quality by staying home when possible or taking public transportation and carpooling. However, Healthy Environment Alliance of Utah spokesperson Meisei Gonzalez says we are getting to a point where small changes like those aren’t making much of an impact.  He said if big things don’t change, Utahns should accept these conditions as a new norm.

Tyler Hewitt is the web/social media assistant at UPR. He writes stories every day, updates the website and manages the station's Twitter and Facebook pages. Tyler is a senior at Utah State University and is studying public relations, marketing, and psychology. He loves to write, listen to music, play video games, play tennis and hang out with his fiancé and cat, Juno. He is a great plant dad and recently started collecting vinyl records!