The Threat from Wildfires Hundreds of Miles Away
Smoke plumes can carry dangerous gases and toxins hundreds or thousands of miles, exposing hundreds of millions of Americans each fire season to harmful particulates.1
Where There is Smoke, There are Costly Consequences
The National Weather Service's Grand Rapids station noted a number of residents in the southern Lower Peninsula of Michigan reported smelling the smoke from the wildfires that have destroyed more than 150 homes and businesses in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, some 600 miles or more away.4
The wide variety of pollutants released by wildland fire includes:
- greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide - CO2)
- methane (CH4)
- nitrous oxide (N2O)
- photochemically reactive compounds
- carbon monoxide (CO)
- nonmethane volatile organic carbon (NMVOC)
- nitrogen oxides (NOx)
- fine and coarse particulate matter (PM)
- light hydrocarbons and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH)
- ammonia (NH3)
- chlorine and bromine compounds
Particles from smoke tend to be very small, less than one micrometer in diameter (a human hair is about 60 micrometers in diameter). Such small particles can be inhaled into the deepest recesses of the lung and are thought to represent a greater health concern than larger particles.5
The effects of smoke range from:
- eye and respiratory tract irritation
- reduced lung function
- exacerbation of asthma
- premature death5
Now is the Time to be Proactive
AAF Flanders can protect your environment from exposure and reduce your risk from the effects of wildfire smoke with our high efficiency carbon filters. Carbon filters are designed to improve indoor air quality through the effective removal of indoor and outdoor particulate and harmful gaseous contaminants.
- Highest activity carbon = highest adsorption
- Energy efficient mini-pleat design
- High capacity disposal filter options
- Retrofit into existing HVAC systems
- Economical solutions available for gaseous contaminant problems, including odors
- Alisa Opar, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes (From Distant Flames), National Resources Defense Council, August 2015.
- National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) analysis, 2011
- Kim Knowlton, Up in smoke: stifling heat, wildfires and the toll on human health, National Resources Defense Council, September 2014.
- Keith Matheny, Smell of Tennessee wildfire smoke reaches lower Michigan, Detroit Free Press, November 29, 2016.
- H. Ammann et al., Wildfire Smoke: A guide for Public Health Officials, Environmental Protection Agency, 2001.