Residents in Fort Saskatchewan and the surrounding area can continue to breathe easy.
 
The Fort Air Partnership (FAP) recently released its 2018 first quarter Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) results. The FAP reported that for the first three months of the year, air quality in the Industrial Heartland region was a low risk to health the majority of the time.
 
The FAP reports air quality in four categories ranging from low risk to very high risk. From Jan.1 to Mar.31, six of the FAP's continuous air monitoring stations recorded low risk readings at least 73 percent of the time. Only 27 of a total 12,628 monitored hours had high risk readings, and none of the stations recorded readings in the very high risk range. Of the monitored areas, Lamont County had the highest percentage of low risk readings and Fort Saskatchewan had the lowest.
 
FAP executive director Nadine Blaney said that the weather plays a role in air quality.
 
“We've had a higher than usual number of days this quarter with weather conditions conducive to temperature inversions, which means that a layer of cold air is trapped near ground level by a layer of warmer air above it, which traps pollutants at ground level and then that leads to higher risk air quality health index ratings,” she said.
 
The first quarter of 2018 saw a higher percentage of time spent in the moderate risk category compared to the first quarter of 2017. The FAP also reported a small percentage increase in high risk hours in the first three months of 2018 versus the same time period last year.
 
“That's really due to those wintertime temperature inversions," added Blaney. "And also, in the wintertime we see an increase in emissions from things like home heating, fireplaces, and idling vehicles. And that all contributes to increased levels of pollutants and things like particulate matter which increase the air quality health index ratings."
 
The FAP monitors air quality in a 4,500 square kilometre airshed north and east of Edmonton. It collects data 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with the Government of Alberta calculating the AQHI using the gathered data.

More Local News

Sherwood Heights replacement school tops EIPS priority list

Elk Island Public Schools (EIPS) has identified its highest capital priorities moving forward.

Double-digit temperatures not sticking around for long

That spring-like weather is soon to leave.

Road weight bans in effect in Lamont County

Lamont County's seasonal road bans are now in effect.

Update: RCMP find missing teen

Morinville RCMP have found a missing teen.

Pedway trail over Highway 15 closed

Some Fort Sask trails are experiencing flooding.

Mother daughter duo sees success at Grammy Awards

They may not have attended the event, but Fort Sask's Kerry and Mercedes McKinlay still made their mark at the 61st annual Grammy Awards.

Murder suspect still on the loose, police charge two more with first degree murder

Police have now charged seven people in relation to the murder of Aldane Mesquita.

Strathcona County unveils new transit plan

Strathcona County is looking to make improvements to its transit service.

Find Your Family Story connects generations with their past

A group in Sherwood Park recently worked to connect people with their past.

Bruderheim's new park a community-wide project

Bruderheim is receiving a lot of financial support for their new community park.

DiscoverWestman.com is Westman's only source for community news and information such as weather and classifieds.

Search the Biz Guide

Login