Record Breaking Poor Air Quality


Residents are breathing a bit easier today after yesterday's record-breaking daily Air Quality Index (AQI) readings, with initial estimates averaging out to roughly 175 AQI. The records began in 1980, and the previous daily record here in the Twin Cities only reached 130 AQI. Cities around the county experienced mid to high 200 AQI levels, resulting in very unhealthy for all groups and creating conditions where anyone could experience serious health effects. For a time, multiple cities in our county had the worst air quality in the United States, some of the worst in the world. Although there are ongoing fires in the boundary waters region, a majority of the particulates originated from the Canadian wildfires that have been raging since spring. The air was so thick with particulates yesterday evening that some of our mesonet present weather maps were displaying that it was misting out at out stations due to the smoke and haze, as well as low visibility throughout the county.


As it is only the beginning of summer, it is important to listen to local and state agencies on what to do in your area if / when we experience historic air quality events like this again. Stay aware of the current air quality conditions from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency at 


Hazy photo over field looking at the Maple Grove water tower on June 14, 2023 due to poor air quality.