Minneapolis air quality exceeded the WHO annual limits on nearly one-fifth of days from 2020 to 2021. Due to wildfire smoke from wildfires out west, Minneapolis air quality averaged nearly five times the daily recommended limit of dangerous PM2.5 pollutants on its worse day in 2021.
Current Air Quality in Minneapolis
19% Of Days in Minneapolis More Polluted Than WHO Target
Minneapolis’s daily air quality levels exceeded the World Health Organization (WHO) annual limit on 19% of days in 2020-2021. The PM2.5 AQI reached 150 in many areas of the city in July of 2021 due to wildfire smoke.
Historical Air Quality Readings for Minneapolis
Is Minneapolis Air Quality Improving?
In the last three years, data shows little improvement in Minneapolis air quality. 2020 air quality worsened slightly from 2019, but 2021 levels are currently lower than the previous two years. Minneapolis’s annual level of air pollution consistently hovers just under the WHO recommended limit.
Why Is the Air Quality Bad Today in Minneapolis?
Weather plays a big role in how the air quality is in Minneapolis each day. The amount of sun can affect how much ozone there is, and wind and rain can affect PM2.5 and particulate air pollution to varying degrees.
Air pollution levels can change quickly, with levels often varying widely throughout the day. Data shows there even appears to be times of the day where air pollution tends to be lower compared to other times.
Below shows how PM2.5 air quality levels around the world tend to vary throughout the day. PM2.5 levels have a tendency to be slightly lower in the afternoon compared to other times of the day. But this is a general trend, Minneapolis PM2.5 AQI levels will not follow this trend every day.
How Wildfires Out West Affect Minneapolis’s Air Quality Levels
Outside of weather, wildfires are another factor that can periodically affect Minneapolis’s air quality. The worst wildfires typically occur in the months of June to September. In July of 2021, wildfire smoke from California and Oregon reached Minneapolis, and Minneapolis air quality reached its worse levels in years.
Below shows how wildfires in September of 2020 affected air quality levels all across the west coast.
Minneapolis Air Pollution: The Negative Health Effects
Studies have shown that PM2.5 raises blood pressure, inflammation, and rates of heart attacks and strokes.
WATCH: Why Is PM2.5 So Harmful to Us?
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Protect Your Health in Minneapolis From Air Pollution and Wildfire Smoke
Despite the harms of PM2.5 that is in wildfire smoke and air pollution, placebo-controlled studies of air purifiers have found that removing particulate in the home has positive effects on blood pressure, inflammation, and immune response.
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