Downtown Seattle is barely visible from Fremont on Monday, August 20, 2018, in Seattle, when heavy smoke from wildfires returned to the area.
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Downtown Seattle is barely visible from Fremont on Monday, August 20, 2018, in Seattle, when heavy smoke from wildfires returned to the area.
Credit: KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Is another smoky summer inevitable?

On this episode of SoundQs, we try to figure out whether smokey summers are the new normal and what wildfire smoke this year might bring

The future is probably going to be smokier—that’s the long term trend. But, as far as this summer, a lot of factors have to line up.

In fact, we don’t really know yet. Fire is really complex, nuanced and variable. We get into some of that complexity and find out what can we do to reduce the risk of wildfire smoke.

US Forest Service research forester, Roger Ottmar, points to a section of Ponderosa pine that grew after the federal government began policies to suppress naturally occurring wildfires. The black marks are where the tree survived previous wildfires.
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US Forest Service research forester, Roger Ottmar, points to a section of Ponderosa pine that grew after the federal government began policies to suppress naturally occurring wildfires. The black marks are where the tree survived previous wildfires.
Credit: KUOW Photo/Anna Boiko-Weyrauch

If you want to monitor the air quality and smoke forecast, check out these resources:

Listen to the episode by clicking the play button above or on your favorite podcast app. SoundQs is a weekly podcast where our KUOW reporters tackle questions submitted by our listeners.

Have a question about the Seattle region for us to answer? Drop it here: