Current air quality outlook
Department meteorologists use monitoring data and weather forecast models to predict Wisconsin's future air quality using the Air Quality Index (AQI) [exit DNR]. If warranted, an Air Quality Notice is issued. Below is the latest air quality forecast for Wisconsin.
Thursday, January 27 - Wednesday, February 02, 2022
Particle pollution (PM2.5)
Good to Moderate levels.
Thursday - A mostly uneventful day is forecast across the state as an area of clouds and light snow push from NW-to-SE along the next cold front. PM2.5 concentrations may build up ahead of the front, impacting SE areas the most, but Good AQI is still expected statewide. Temperatures will be falling quickly behind the front, with NW areas already seeing the day’s high temperatures.
Weather map for Thursday, January 27, 2022. Graphic is courtesy of the NOAA/NWS Weather Prediction Center.
Friday - Temperatures crashing behind the cold front Thursday into Friday will lead to bitter cold for Friday morning, with the entire state outside of those areas influenced by the lakes waking up to temperatures in the negatives. Mostly sunny skies can only do so much this time of year and high temperatures will only manage the upper single digits through the teens. Good AQI is forecast to continue.
Weather map for Friday, January 28, 2022. Graphic is courtesy of the NOAA/NWS Weather Prediction Center.
Saturday - Southerly flow will become more prominent on Saturday with the approach of the next system into the Upper-Great Lakes Region. Increased cloud cover is likely with a slight chance for light snow, mainly in northeastern areas. PM2.5 concentrations are expected to increase on the southerly flow, with Low-Moderate AQI forecast statewide.
Moderating temperatures will be the story to begin next week with seasonable temperatures developing Sunday to Monday, becoming seasonably warm Monday to Tuesday. A Canadian low may yield light impacts for northern areas Monday into Tuesday, However, the potential for more impactful weather arrives in the Wednesday to Thursday timeframe. It is too far out for any specifics, but general guidance favors southern WI with all precipitation types still in play. PM2.5 AQI should return to Good for Sunday before transitioning back towards Moderate by Monday. The active pattern for mid-week is then expected to promote Good AQI.
Note: All weather maps are courtesy of the NOAA/NWS Weather Prediction Center [exit DNR].
Air Quality Index (AQI) ranges
For more information about AQI ranges and colors, see the U.S. EPA's Air Quality Index (AQI) Basics [exit DNR].