Each day, the forecast will predict how much ozone or particulate pollutants are expected in the air in urban areas across the state. Green means good, or healthy air; a red forecast indicates air unsafe for outdoor activity.
The DAQ expects more orange and red days this summer because the federal Environmental Protection Agency has changed measurement standards.
“That doesn’t mean that air quality is getting worse, but that the standards have become stricter to better protect public health and the environment,” DAQ forecaster George Bridgers said.
Forecasts will be issued at 3 p.m. daily through September for the Triangle and other urban areas, including Charlotte, Fayetteville and Rocky Mount.