Wildfires impacting air quality responseWildfires impacting air quality response<div class="ExternalClassBA3B6D0014F443469868DDCE4D07E471"><p>​Metro Vancouver is enhancing the way it responds to air quality impacts from wildfires, following unprecedented levels of smoke during the past four years and anticipated changes in the frequency, duration and severity of wildfires in the future as a result of climate change.  </p><p>Metro Vancouver operates a network of 31 air quality monitoring stations from Horseshoe Bay to Hope. Air Quality Advisories are issued whenever the air quality is expected to reach unhealthy levels. Ground-level ozone (O<sub>3</sub>) and fine particulate matter (PM<sub>2.5</sub>) are the key air contaminants for Metro Vancouver’s air quality advisory service, due to their potential to reach levels that may be harmful to human health.</p><p>During the summers of 2015, 2017 and 2018, Metro Vancouver experienced unprecedented wildfire smoke impacts. The 14-day advisory in place from August 13 to 27, 2018, was the longest continuous advisory period in the history of Metro Vancouver’s air quality program. </p><p>Since late 2017, Metro Vancouver has been working with local health authorities, BC Centre for Disease Control, Health Canada, the BC Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy, and the Fraser Valley Regional District to develop more effective communication materials for residents on wildfire smoke health impacts and interventions for reducing them. While the wildfire emissions over the past four years have originated outside of the airshed, Metro Vancouver is also doing its part to prevent the breakout of wildfires within the region.</p><p>Staff are also investigating early outreach and messaging before air quality degrades to levels that warrant an advisory being issued. Metro Vancouver’s updated air quality management plan will also explicitly consider the increasing impacts of wildfire activity when evaluating future management strategies and actions.</p></div>http://www.metrovancouver.org/metroupdate/PublishingImages/issue52-airquality.jpg2019-04-29T07:00:00ZGP0|#d4fe6a3c-47a5-445e-9965-b575605eb9bd;L0|#0d4fe6a3c-47a5-445e-9965-b575605eb9bd|Issue 52;GTSet|#d14ffe11-45dc-48fb-8684-ff109cf15a74<div class="ExternalClass9CAEF60310A94A3590AAB2BDC619939C"><p>​Metro Vancouver is enhancing the way it responds to air quality impacts from wildfires, following unprecedented levels of smoke during the past four years and anticipated changes in the frequency, duration and severity of wildfires in the future as a result of climate change.</p></div>0