Starting on November 19, 2021, the Monterey Bay Air Resources District (MBARD) will begin announcing wintertime Spare the Air alerts for Monterey, San Benito, and Santa Cruz counties. MBARD will send out notifications by 3:00 pm on days when conditions warrant a Spare the Air alert. Conditions include colder temperatures and the presence on an inversion, which helps to keep wood smoke pollution trapped close to the ground. While the alerts will routinely apply to San Lorenzo Valley in Santa Cruz County, there may be times when MBARD will provide an alert for areas in Monterey and San Benito counties.
MBARD is implementing this voluntary program to address unhealthful air quality conditions that may occur in the San Lorenzo Valley. Public awareness and response are critical to help reduce pollution levels during stagnant winter conditions. If air quality conditions do not improve, MBARD will take steps towards a mandatory program.
MBARD requests that news services include the Spare the Air alerts as part of weather and news broadcasts using the orange logo. During a Spare the Air alert, MBARD will ask residents to choose an alternative home heating source such as electricity, propane, natural gas, or pellets. The program will run from November through February.
Please call our office at (831) 647-9411 with any questions and/or concerns. To sign up for alerts via email, please visit our website at www.mbard.org and click on the “Subscribe to Email Lists” button.
Richard A. Stedman
Air Pollution Control Officer