To combat the increase air pollution, the EPA ban extends to agricultural and outdoor fires, including for camping and recreation within the reservation’s boundaries. It applies to all areas and properties in the reservation, but the ban does not include ceremonial and traditional fires. The agency is also requesting that those living within the reservation work to reduce air pollution from other sources. This includes the use of woodstoves and fireplaces — when they are not the only heat source — and excessive driving and idling in vehicles.
Air pollution can have significant health impacts on those suffering from asthma or difficulty breathing, heart conditions or diabetes, as well as children, seniors and pregnant women. During times of elevated air pollution, people falling into those groups should avoid outdoor pollution and especially restrict outdoor exercise, measures that are recommended for everyone in instances of extremely high pollution levels.
Those living in the areas surrounding the Yakama Nation Reservation should inquire about air pollution or any concurrent burn bans at local environmental agencies, the local fire department or the Washington Department of Ecology.