Air Quality Index

AQI reports daily air quality

In Minnesota, the Air Quality Index (AQI) is based on measurements of six pollutants: fine particles (PM2.5), course particles (PM10), ozone, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, and carbon monoxide. Each hour, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) converts measurements to an AQI value based on health standards established by the US Environmental Protection Agency.

In 2019, the MPCA reported the AQI in 18 regions across the state: Brainerd, Detroit Lakes, Duluth, Ely, Grand Portage, Marshall, Rochester, St Cloud, the Twin Cities, and Virginia. See current air quality conditions in Minnesota

Air alerts are issued as health warnings

Since air quality affects health, the AQI can help people prevent the health effects of exposures to air pollution. On days with "moderate" air quality (yellow), air pollution levels are elevated and may cause health effects for people who are vulnerable to air pollution.

The MPCA issues an air quality alert on days when the AQI is above 100 ("unhealthy for sensitive groups"). On these days, air pollution levels may cause adverse health effects for people with cardiovascular disease, lung disease, older adults, children, and even healthy people doing vigorous activity. 


More information about the AQI

For additional ways to keep track of air quality:

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Last updated May 2020. Updates are made when data become available.