METRO Vancouver is continuing an Air Quality Advisory for Wednesday, August 2, 2017, for Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley because of high concentrations of fine particulate matter that are expected to persist for several days.
Air quality continues to be affected by the current weather pattern over the BC Coast, which has caused outflow winds to transport smoke from wildfires burning in the BC Interior towards our region. Smoke aloft has mixed down to the ground in some areas and air quality forecast models are predicting smoke to become more widespread throughout the region this evening and on Wednesday. This advisory is expected to continue until there is a change in the current weather.
Smoke concentrations may vary widely across the region as winds and temperatures change, and as wildfire behaviour changes.
Fine particulate matter, also known as PM2.5, refers to airborne solid or liquid droplets with a diameter of 2.5 micrometres (µm) or less. PM2.5 can easily penetrate indoors because of their small size.
Persons with chronic underlying medical conditions should postpone strenuous exercise until the advisory is lifted. Exposure is particularly a concern for infants, the elderly and those who have diabetes, and lung or heart disease. If you are experiencing symptoms such as chest discomfort, shortness of breath, coughing or wheezing, follow the advice of your healthcare provider. As we are in the summer season with warm temperatures, it is also important to stay cool and hydrated. Indoor spaces with air conditioning may offer relief from both heat and air pollution.
Metro Vancouver works in cooperation with Environment and Climate Change Canada, Fraser Valley Regional District and B.C. Ministry of Environment to look after air quality.
Information about real-time air quality readings for Metro Vancouver and Fraser Valley communities and potential health impacts can be found at: