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The Yolo-Solano Air Quality Management District's mission is to protect human health and property from the harmful effects of air pollution.

From November through February, common weather conditions and the elevated use of fireplaces and wood stoves raise the levels of fine particulate pollution (commonly called soot) in our air. Fine particulates cause breathing problems for many residents, especially the very young, the elderly, those with respiratory ailments such as asthma and those with heart disease.

To help reduce peak soot levels and protect the public health, Yolo-Solano AQMD runs an annual program called Don't Light Tonight. From November 1 through the end of February each year, the District produces daily forecasts of expected particulate pollution. If the forecast exceeds a certain threshold -- 25 micrograms per cubic meter -- Yolo-Solano AQMD will call a Don't Light Tonight advisory. This advisory asks residents to refrain from using their fireplace or wood stove, as wood burning is a significant contributor to particulate pollution in our region.

Don't Light Tonight advisories include all residents of Yolo County and the northeastern portion of Solano County, including the cities of Vacaville, Dixon and Rio Vista, and their surrounding areas.