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Central and southern Taiwan air quality hits ‘code red’ levels

Central and southern Taiwan air quality hits ‘code red’ levels

(CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News)-Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) on Monday warned residents in central and southern Taiwan of bad air quality as the Air Quality Index (AQI) readings at some of the regions’ monitoring stations reached “code red” levels.

Due to poor atmospheric dispersion conditions and the effects of transboundary pollutants, the AQI levels in southern Taiwan of Chiayi, Tainan, Kaohsiung, Pingtung have reached above 151, a “code red,” or “unhealthy” level, while the AQI index have been recorded between 101 and 150 in central Taiwan, or a “code orange” level.

The EPA uses a six-color air pollution warning system, in which a maroon alert is the highest and most severe warning, which indicates “hazardous” air quality, and is followed by purple, red, orange, yellow, and green alerts.

According to the EPA standards, a code red alert runs from 151 to 200 on the AQI scale. AQI levels above 150 are considered “unhealthy for everyone,” and members of sensitive groups may experience health effects.

Residents in the regions, especially the elderly, children, and those with respiratory illnesses and heart conditions, are advised to limit outdoor activities and wear masks when going out in order to reduce negative respiratory effects from the bad air.