Ozone forecasting in Sublette County will begin again in January. Ozone is a hazardous gas that’s formed under certain conditions by the combination of volatile organic compounds and nitrous oxides. In recent years Sublette County has seen spikes in ozone during wintertime, particularly on days with no wind, lots of sunlight and snow on the ground.
Keith Guille is a spokesperson for the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality. He says the forecasts allow people -- especially those who might be particularly sensitive to ozone, like children and the elderly -- to take precautions, like staying indoors.
“In previous years when we gave the forecast, we’d put out today’s forecast and then the next day. This year we’re actually doing the current day and then two days after that. So it’s a three day forecast now.”
Guille says the extended forecasts also allow industry to plan ahead for days when ozone could become a problem.
“To try to plan better with their folks and their employees about whether or not they may be needing to curb and put forth some contingency plans if they see in the next couple of days that we may have high ozone levels.”
Forecasting will start in January, and run through March. The public can access data about ozone levels at winterozone.org.