Episodes 1-3: Where There’s Smoke

Listen to this! @OregonDEQ launched a podcast called #GreenState, and the first 3 episodes are about the history of air quality in Oregon, #OregonFires2020, the forecast for smoke in coming years, and how to stay healthy during poor air quality.

DEQ kicked off its podcast with a three-part series called Where There’s Smoke, which focuses on air quality and wildfire smoke. Something Oregonians have already experience much of this summer. The series covers the past, present and future of air quality. Hosts Lauren Wirtis and Dylan Darling talk with experts from DEQ, the U.S. Forest Service, Lane Regional Air Protection Agency, and Oregon Health Authority.

Listen to the podcast on: SoundCloud, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, or wherever you get your podcasts.

Most important resources mentioned throughout this series:

Part 1 – The Past

In the inaugural podcast episode, Lauren and Dylan talk with experts about the history of air quality in Oregon – what it was like, how DEQ monitoring began, and how regulations evolved over time.

A Look at Oregon’s Field Burning in the Willamette Valley, 1978


Part 2 – The Present

The second part of the Where There’s Smoke series is dedicated to the present – namely the September 2020 wildfires. What led to those wildfires, how bad was the air quality, what did it mean to also have COVID going on, and what resources are available to protect your air?

OPB article from September 2020.


  • Introduction
  • Background of forestry practices [3:40]
  • Air quality advisories in Oregon [8:25]
  • Air quality index [10:50]
  • How air quality advisories work [13:05]
  • CAUTION: Talking more specifically about Sept 2020 wildfires
    • September 2020 wildfire impact to the air monitoring network [17:25]
    • Wildfires, smoke and COVID [20:20]
  • What you can do [23:45]

Part 3 – The Future

The third and final part of the Where There’s Smoke series is dedicated to the future of air quality and wildfire smoke in Oregon. Air quality issues from wildfire smoke are not going away, but DEQ and its partner agencies are all hard at work determining ways to mitigate smoke and its health impacts, and provide more resources to Oregonians. In part 3, we focus on this work and what Oregonians can expect to see in the future.

Wildfires and smoke in Oregon aren’t going away. This image reflects data from the Wildfire Smoke Trends Report for 2020.


  • Introduction
  • Future of air quality in Oregon [1:30]
  • What we’re doing to address air quality impacts from wildfire smoke [5:45]
  • Key take-aways [27:55]

Bonus – Fire Clouds

Published by Oregon Department of Environmental Quality

DEQ’s mission is to be a leader in restoring, maintaining and enhancing the quality of Oregon’s air, land and water.

One thought on “Episodes 1-3: Where There’s Smoke

Comments are closed.