No - it's not the Homeland Security terrorist threat. It's the current quality of our valley air. Today is the second "orange" day in a row.
(I wrote about "yellow alert" last month - click HERE to review. It's gotten worse since then.)
Here's the official warning:
The Idaho Department of Environmental Quality has issued an orange air quality alert for today, and all open outdoor burning is prohibited in Ada and Canyon County by municipal and county ordinance.
Hot temperatures in Southwest Idaho and smoke from wildfires are contributing to high levels of ozone.
Today's forecast air quality index is 110, which is considered unhealthy for sensitive individuals. All individuals may want to consider postponing strenuous activities until air quality improves. The following actions may help reduce air pollution during this period:
• Limit driving.
• Combine trips and errands.
• Don't burn outdoors.
• Fill your gas tank and mow your yard in the evening after temperatures cool down.
I'm sure the "limit driving" advice is given (nudge-nudge, wink-wink), but there's no expectation that it will be followed. Same with the "combine trips" advice. I've not noticed any change in number of vehicles on the road. We can't be inconvenienced, at least for something as trivial as air quality!
In fact yesterday afternoon, I was bicycling on Miller Street, just south of downtown. (I know, I'm not following their advice, either. They say to postpone strenuous activity. But... I wasn't really hammerin', just riding along at a brisk pace.) I happened across a Boise Police cruiser; it was just sitting there, on the side of the road, idling. With nobody inside, and nobody in sight. Reinforcing the common belief that rules are for the "little people," but not for everybody.