Updated: Air quality warning rescinded for Langley and Fraser Valley

Metro Vancouver regional authority told residents to avoid strenuous activities during the mid-afternoon

An air quality warning was lifted Monday

An air quality warning was lifted Monday

An air quality advisory issued Saturday by Metro Vancouver due to high concentrations of ground-level ozone ended Monday morning.

The advisory – the first one of this summer – applied in eastern parts of Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley as hot weather broke temperature records in many areas.

B.C.’s Air Quality Health Index continued to forecast a moderate health risk of four (on a scale of 1 to 10) for Monday afternoon and evening in eastern Metro and throughout the Fraser Valley.

During advisory periods, residents are urged to avoid strenuous outdoor activities, especially the elderly, infants and those with respiratory conditions, and seek air-conditioned indoor spaces.

Ground-level ozone is caused when nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds react in sunlight on hot days.

VOCs mainly come from vehicle emissions, solvent and fuel evaporation, farming, as well as natural sources such as vegetation.

Emissions from vehicles have steadily declined in recent years due to improving technology, but Metro has projected the recent trend of improving air quality could reverse and worsen from 2020 to 2030, due to growth in Lower Mainland population and traffic.

Both the Metro and Fraser Valley regional districts have lodged concerns with the National Energy Board that the Kinder Morgan pipeline twinning would significantly increase VOC emissions in the region and, as a result, ground-level ozone.

Metro has estimated the increase in VOCs from idling oil tankers and terminal operations would be more than 1,500 tonnes per year, equivalent to adding 13 new oil refineries the size of Chevron’s Burnaby refinery.

Residents can help reduce air emissions in the region by minimizing use of vehicles, taking transit or carpooling, minimizing the use of lawn mowers and other gas-powered engines, avoiding idling your vehicle, and avoiding refuelling it at the hottest time of the day.

For air quality health index information see bcairquality.ca, for data on local stations see http://gis.metrovancouver.org/airmap/ and for visual air quality camera views in the Lower Mainland see www.clearairbc.ca/community/Pages/default.aspx.

Smoke from wildfires so far hasn’t been a significant problem in the Lower Mainland, except for the Sea-to-Sky corridor around Squamish, where there was significant smoke earlier in the month from the Elaho Valley fire.

But that could change quickly as the wildfire risk is high to extreme in the region.

 

Previous story:

 

Residents of the Langleys and  the Fraser Valley should avoid strenuous activities during the mid-afternoon, especially the very young, very old and people  with lung or heart disease.

Metro Vancouver issued an air quality advisory for eastern parts of the region, saying the heat wave is causing high concentrations of ground-level ozone.

People “experiencing symptoms such as chest discomfort, shortness of breath, or coughing or wheezing” should see a doctor or stay indoors in air-conditioned spaces, the Metro press release states.

Environment Canada describes ground-level ozone as a “colourless and highly irritating gas” that forms just above the earth’s surface.

It is called a “secondary” pollutant because it is produced when two primary pollutants react in sunlight and stagnant air, nitrogen oxides (NOx) and volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

About 95 per cent of NOx from human activity come from the burning of coalgasoline and oil in motor vehicles, homesindustries and power plants.

VOCs from human activity come mainly from gasoline combustion and marketing, upstream oil and gas production, residential wood combustion, and from the evaporation of liquid fuels and solvents.

The Metro Vancouver advisory is expected to continue until there is a change in the current hot and sunny weather.

Residents are being asked to reduce emissions by

· Minimizing the use of vehicles.

· Taking transit or carpooling rather than driving.

· Minimizing the use of other gasoline and diesel engines, such as lawn mowers and trimmers.

· Avoiding refuelling with gasoline during the hottest time of day.

· Avoiding idling vehicle.

 

Just Posted

These three kittens, seen here on Thursday, June 10, 2021, are just some of many up for adoption at the Chilliwack SPCA. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: Find Me My Furever Home – Three kittens at the Chilliwack SPCA

Kittens were in ‘rough shape’ when they came into the Chilliwack SPCA, now ready for adoption

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: Chilliwack family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A new sign was installed at St. Thomas Anglican Church on Saturday, June 5, 2021 in Chilliwack. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Community effort to install new sign at Chilliwack’s oldest church

‘We feel it’s a step in the right direction to bring the church up-to-date,’ says St. Thomas parishioner

Dennis Saulnier rescued his daughters, two-year-old Brinley (left) and four-year-old Keegan, after their truck was driven off the road and into Cultus Lake on May 16, 2020. Reporter Jenna Hauck has been recognized by the B.C. and Yukon Community Newspapers Association for her story on the rescue. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)
Chilliwack Progress, Hope Standard staff take home 7 Ma Murray awards

Jenna Hauck, Eric Welsh, Jessica Peters, Emelie Peacock all earn journalism industry recognition

A student prepares to throw a plate full of whipped cream at principal Jim Egdcombe’s face as vice principal Devin Atkins watches as part of a fundraiser at Leary Integrated Arts and Technology elementary on Friday, June 11, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
The pied principals: Chilliwack elementary staff get messy for charity

Cops for Cancer fundraiser saw kids ‘pie the principal’ at Leary elementary in Chilliwack

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Most Read