Trapped in the Valley

Dec 16, 2011
by: PaigeFery

These past two weeks the inversion in the Salt Lake City Valley has grown to its worst. With red air days almost every day, and very low visibility, I become interested to research the cities air pollution.

Inversion are mostly the effect of air pollution created by man such as industrial areas, cars, and smoke. Because Salt Lake is surrounded by the Wasatch and Oaker Mountains, the pollution becomes trapped in the valley. Only snow, rain, or wind storms are able to clear out the pollution.

Researchers at the University of Utah have been conducting a three year study about these infamous inversions. They want to see if weather conditions have an affect on the inversions. They are testing to see if it is true that as the warm air rises up towards the mountains, that the pollutants are trapped in the valley. Already there has been twenty red air days this winter giving researchers plenty of time to experiment.