Taipei, March 17 (CNA) The air quality was moderate to good around Taiwan Friday, with the exception of some parts in central and southern Taiwan, according to the Environmental Protection Administration's (EPA's) Taiwan Air Quality Monitoring Network.
As of 11 a.m., the monitoring stations in Pingtung City and Kaohsiung City's Qiaotou, Xiagang and Qianzhen Districts flashed red, meaning the air quality was unhealthy for the general public.
The rest of Kaohsiung City and Pingtung County were orange, indicating the air quality was unhealthy for sensitive groups such as young children, the elderly and people with a chronic disease. The only exception was the southernmost township of Henchun, Pingtung County, where the air quality was green (good).
The stations in Puli and Zhushan Townships in central Taiwan's Nantou County, Chiayi City and downtown Tainan City flashed orange but otherwise air quality in the rest of central and southern Taiwan's Yunlin County, Chiayi County and Tainan City was moderate (yellow) to good.
Northern Taiwan, including Hsinchu and Miaoli Counties, and all along the eastern half of the country had the best air quality of the day, and all stations showed green except Miaoli and Toufen, where the air quality was moderate, according to the network (http://taqm.epa.gov.tw/taqm/en/).
For Saturday, the air quality is forecast to flash red in Kaohsiung and Pingtung; orange in central Taiwan and Yunlin, Chiayi and Tainan; yellow in the north including Hsinchu and Miaoli; and green in Yilan, Hualien and Taitung, according to the network.
The EPA's six-color scale takes into account ozone, PM2.5 and PM10 particulates, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide and nitric oxide concentrations in the air.
Green represents "good" air quality, with a pollutant reading of less than 50; yellow indicates "moderate" at 50-100; orange means "unhealthy for sensitive groups" with a reading of 101-150; red indicates "unhealthy" with a range of 151-200; purple signifies "very unhealthy" with a level of 201-300; maroon represents "hazardous" with a reading of 301-500.