Ok, so maybe it’s not quite that thick, disgusting or unfortunate. The level of air pollution has, however, violated the new federal smog standard in all nine counties of the San Francisco Bay Area on 11 days this year.

We BART, we bus, we even bike … what more do they want from us?! We’re going to level with you, though: With the old federal standards, we polluted our ozone – shall we say – “too much” only once last year.

Take-home message: We aren’t really dirtying our humble means of breathing any more than we were last year, but the powers that be are still recoiling from the predictions of Disney and Pixar’s Wall-E. They’re not going to stop poking at us until we’ve overcrowded both BART and Bicycle Boulevard.

Image Source: Foxtongue under Creative Commons
Bay Area struggles to meet new smog standards [Contra Costa Times]

It appears that Bay Areans (Areites? Areish?) might have pissed off the sky gods one time too many–I guess this is what we get for the end of the Spare the Air program’s free public transportation.

It’s no joke that the air this past week was chock-full of all sorts of nasty invisible (we hope) particles that limited visibility so much that the tops of the eastern hills were missing from a Campanile viewpoint.

Good news, though. It looks like whatever the mist was–be it from lightning-sparked fires, foggy water vapor, or good old car exhaust–will leave soon, according to the Bay Area Air Quality Management District. You can come outside now.

Image Source: telethon under Creative Commons
Indoor activities, irritated eyes, asthma inhalers as smoke lingers in Bay Area [San Jose Mercury News]