A strong wind pattern is expected to roll into the Bay Area later this evening from the Pacific, pushing away wildfire smoke pollutants and enhancing air quality throughout the region.
Just before the weekend, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) extended its air quality advisory into Saturday amid increasing levels of airborne pollutants. Though the smoke that inundated the Bay Area this weekend was light, as well as mostly located high in the atmosphere, it still warranted the recommendation to keep doors and windows closed. However, a respite from the dip in air quality — which primarily affected cities in the East Bay — is on the way in the form of an onshore wind pattern.
There as been a bit of smoke that has moved into the region this weekend, but the prevailing onshore wind pattern increases later today.— NWS Bay Area (@NWSBayArea) August 8, 2021
Here's a look at the HRRR model that shows the total amount of smoke being pushed toward the CA Central Valley.#CAwx #CAfire #smoke pic.twitter.com/LryZqzH26h
Staring later Sunday around 5 p.m., an onshore wind pattern, which will strengthen throughout the evening, will blow lingering smoke off into the distance and reveal less hazy, more breathable air conditions.
"There has been a bit of smoke that has moved into the region this weekend, but the prevailing onshore wind pattern increases later today," Tweeted the National Weather Service: San Francisco Bay Area Saturday. Embedded in the tweet is a high-resolution rapid refresh (HRRR) model showing how the winds will whisk away smoke conditions.
While smoke and air quality can impact people differently, the amount of smoke that reached the surface around the Bay Area this weekend has been light. Here's the same HRRR model's showing near surface smoke moving eastward late Sunday afternoon/evening.#CAwx #CAfire #smoke pic.twitter.com/e7RMRyHNSm— NWS Bay Area (@NWSBayArea) August 8, 2021
"While smoke and air quality can impact people differently, the amount of smoke that reached the surface around the Bay Area this weekend has been light," the weather organization continued before showing another HRRR model showing how the onshore wind pattern will impact lower-lying air conditions.
With wildfires still roaring across Northern California, even bringing a return to orange skies in some areas, this will by no means be our last spat of smokey air conditions. Now's a time to invest in quality air filters, wildfire smoke-appropriate face masks, and remind climate crisis naysayers in your life that the plant is, in fact, on fire.
Image: Screenshot via @nwsbayarea