Update: DHHS/NDEE Extends Smoke Advisory for Eastern Nebraska

News Release
For Immediate Release: 4/10/2023

Alycia Davis, (531) 249-8079,

Amanda Woita, Department of Environment and Energy, (402) 471-4243,

Lincoln – Smoke associated with prescribed burning in the Central Plains region may affect the air quality in Nebraska.

Issued for: Monday, April 10, 2023, through Wednesday, April 12, 2023

Affected Area: Eastern Nebraska

Air Quality Index: Moderate to Unhealthy for Sensitive Group Air Quality Index (AQI)

Potential Air Quality Impacts from: Prescribed Burning

An advisory of possible Moderate to Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups AQI (yellow and orange) impacts may occur in eastern Nebraska potentially affecting Beatrice, Columbus, Fairbury, Fremont, Lincoln, Nebraska City, Norfolk, Omaha, and York, from Monday, April 10 through Wednesday, April 12, 2023.

Moderate AQI (yellow)

During Moderate AQI (yellow category) conditions, those who are unusually sensitive to particle pollution may experience health effects. When conditions rise to the yellow category, those who are unusually sensitive are advised to consider shortening outdoor activities and reducing the intensity of these activities. Symptoms such as coughing or shortness of breath are signs to take it easier.  

Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups AQI (orange)

During Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups AQI (Orange category) conditions, members of sensitive groups may experience health effects. Sensitive groups include people with heart or lung disease, older adults, and children. When conditions rise to the orange category, sensitive groups are advised to reduce prolonged or heavy exertion and avoid intense outdoor activities.

Advisories are issued for areas of anticipated impact by notifying the media, and local health departments, posting information on the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy's (NDEE) webpages, and social media sites. These advisories provide information to the public on the anticipated impacts, air quality, and health resources to help citizens protect their health and minimize exposure to smoke.

States monitor smoke levels and weather conditions to determine when impacts on air quality are anticipated. Advisories are based on data from the National Weather Service (NWS), the states of Kansas and/or Oklahoma, smoke plume modeling, and from ambient air quality monitors located in Omaha, Bellevue, Lincoln, Beatrice, Grand Island, and Scottsbluff.

The following Air Quality Index (AQI) is used. This AQI is used nationally and is available in real-time for Nebraska by visiting https://www.airnow.gov

Air Quality Index

For more information on smoke awareness, visit NDEE's website at http://dee.ne.gov/NDEQProg.nsf/OnWeb/AirSA.

For more information on burn activity and a smoke outlook, visit NDEE's website at http://dee.ne.gov/Press.nsf/pages/AirSA-2.

View seasonal news release for information on the Flint Hills burns at

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