Air quality advisory issued for Bulkley Valley and Lakes District

High concentration of particulate matter poses hazard for those with underlying medical conditions

Analysis by the Ministry of Environment and other research indicates that wood smoke from wood stoves and outdoor open burning is a significant contributor to PM2.5 levels in several British Columbia communities

Environment Canada has issued an air quality advisory for Bulkley Valley and The Lakes northwest including Smithers and southeast including Burns Lake.

Stagnant winter weather conditions are creating elevated pollution levels.

The Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy in collaboration with Northern Health has issued an Air Quality Advisory for Smithers, Houston and Vanderhoof due to high concentrations of fine particulate matter. This advisory is in effect until further notice.

Persons with chronic underlying medical conditions should postpone strenuous exercise until the advisory is lifted. Staying indoors and in air conditioned spaces helps to reduce fine particulate exposure. Exposure is particularly a concern for infants, the elderly and those who have diabetes, and lung or heart disease. For the duration of this advisory the use of woodstoves is prohibited within the Districts of Smithers, Houston, and Vanderhoof unless the woodstove is the only source of heat in a dwelling.

Real-time air quality observations and information regarding the health effects of air pol-lution can be found here.

For more information on current air quality, see: www.bcairquality.ca.

Visit www.airhealth.ca for information on how to reduce your health risk and your personal contribution to pollution levels, as well as for current and forecast AQHI values.

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