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Health Alert: Air Quality Health Advisory for Tompkins and Surrounding Counties

(Ithaca, N.Y., June 06, 2023) – Tompkins County Whole Health (TCWH) is alerting the community to a poor air quality advisory in effect today, Tuesday, June 6, 2023, through midnight (12:00AM Wednesday, June 7, 2023), due to wildfires occurring north of our region in Quebec, Canada.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC) has issued an Air Quality Health Advisory for Fine Particulates, with the air quality level for outdoor air in Tompkins County scaling above 100 on the Air Quality Index (AQI) scale. The higher the AQI value, the greater the health concern.

When pollution levels are elevated, the New York State Department of Health recommends that individuals limit strenuous outdoor physical activity (such as walking instead of running) to reduce their risk of adverse health effects. People who may be especially sensitive to the effects of elevated levels of pollutants include the very young, older adults, and those with pre-existing respiratory problems such as asthma or heart disease. Those with related healthcare concerns should consider contacting their healthcare provider.

High quality masks, such as N95 and KN95 masks, can be worn outdoors to reduce the inhalation of fine particles from the air. Cloth masks and surgical masks are not effective at reducing inhalation of pollutants.

For additional information, please visit the NYS DEC website at: or call the Air Quality Hotline at: 800-535-1345.

Tompkins County Whole Health (formerly the Tompkins County Health Department) envisions a future where every person in Tompkins County can achieve wellness. Find us online at, and follow us on Facebook at and on Twitter at @TCWholeHealth. Get Whole Health updates or other county announcements via email or text, sign up here.

Media contact: Shannon Alvord,