Air quality categories help us understand air quality and modify our activities if pollution levels are high.
Air quality categories (AQC) are colour indicators used to summarise air quality measurements. In New South Wales, five colour indicators are used to classify air quality as either 'Good', 'Fair', 'Poor', 'Very Poor' or 'Extremely Poor'.
The AQC is determined by measurements of key air pollutants we monitor at our monitoring locations.
What the air quality categories mean for you
The AQC colours provide information at a glance to help people plan their activities, as shown in the Environmental Health Standing Committee's Activity guide.
By using the AQC colours and following general health recommendations stated in the activity guide, you can take steps to limit your exposure to air pollution. For example, if the AQC at your local station is ‘Very Poor’, the health advice in the activity guide can assist you in understanding how this might affect your health and recommend actions to take.
Information for sensitive groups
Some people may be more sensitive to air pollution. Sensitive groups include people with lung disease or heart disease, children, older adults, pregnant women.
If you need information specific to people with asthma, visit the Asthma Australia website to access their free helpline.
Anyone with persistent symptoms should seek medical advice or call Health Direct Australia on 1800 022 222