The San Joaquin Valley averted a breach of the one-hour federal ozone standard on Monday and Tuesday, and the ozone threat seems to be subsiding for now.
An air alert declared from Stockton to Bakersfield expired Wednesday, said leaders at the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District.
If the Valley can avoid exceeding the one-hour standard this season, a $29 million federal penalty — paid mostly by motorists in registration fees — would end next year, air district leaders say.
Temperatures are expected to heat up into the weekend, which can mean worse air quality. Ozone has a better chance of forming in hot air.
During the three-day air alert this week, smoke and soot coming from the Rim fire and other California wildfires did not exceed the federal particle pollution threshold.
On Tuesday, the Valley did not even exceed the more stringent federal eight-hour ozone standard, breaking a streak of five consecutive exceedances.
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