+ Smoke Advisory Warning updated August 23, 2021 due to wildland fire smoke from Central Canada.
Red Cliff is located on the northern most point in Wisconsin on the Bayfield peninsula; it is surrounded by water on three sides by Lake Superior and relatively undeveloped forest or fruit farm lands to the south. The lack of heavy industries within reservation boundaries means Red Cliff enjoys near pristine air quality. It is the goal of the Red Cliff Tribe to protect and maintain all aspects of our environment while promoting responsible future development. The current grant projects are a continuation of Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) assessments, the completion of an Emissions Inventory for 2018, and to take our initial steps into the Ambient Air Field with continuous monitoring for Particulate Matter 2.5 Microns in Diameter and Smaller (PM2.5).
The Red Cliff Tribe’s IAQ Program is in its 10th year and falls under the Treaty Natural Resource Division/Environmental Department. The program focuses on the completion of basic residential assessments to determine the need for insulation, ventilation and moisture control measures. Problem areas are identified and the source(s) documented. Homeowner and office management education is carried out to increase community knowledge on basic measures that can be taken to control their indoor environment (moisture control, additional ventilation, piping insulation, etc.). When feasible, the information can be utilized to remedy source problems in each home. The Red Cliff Tribe recognizes that the incidence of respiratory sensitivity, asthma and allergies is increasing, especially among our children. Proper management of moisture, air flow, and insulation results in a benefit to both health and heating and cooling costs. The Red Cliff Health Center has many patients that are suffering from respiratory problems that are exacerbated by poor indoor air quality within their homes.
The Emissions Inventory (EI) is a record of the amount of pollutants discharged into the atmosphere by facilities, equipment and vehicle uses. Discharges contain greenhouse gasses and any other air pollutants originating from sources in a geographical area within a specified time span. Every three years after the initial EI, it is reevaluated.
The Tribe is also interested in air quality as a natural resource and environmental health issue that has not yet been explored thoroughly. The 2018 grant cycle will begin the Air Programs first step into the Ambient Air Field and will consist of tracking Particulate Matter 2.5 Microns in Diameter and smaller as it travels around and through Red Cliffs exterior boundaries, utilizing the Met One E-Sampler Light Scatter Aerosol Monitor. This equipment, coupled with accompanying Wind Speed/Wind Direction sensor will allow us to not only track particulate levels, but also the direction it is coming from. This will aid in determining potential sources that pose a health risk to our members suffering from respiratory sensitivity, asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Ambient air quality has the potential to affect the health of Tribal Members in several ways, therefore it is important that the Tribe have the capability to participate in regional issues affecting air quality. The data collected in this project will further that goal.
The Air Program will distribute air quality notifications should the Air Quality Index (AQI)for PM2.5 exceed the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) in our region via Tribal resources and email. This will allow for those with respiratory sensitivity to plan outdoor activities accordingly. To check AQI, go to www.airnow.gov then click on your state to see surrounding area monitoring sites.