Sunday, September 13th 2020, 8:20 pm - British Columbia's skies have been smoky in recent days due to roaring wildfires burning across western United States. The smoke is going to start to head into southern Alberta.
The smoke from wildfires in Washington state and Oregon is still clouding southern areas of British Columbia, creating poor air quality conditions.
Most of Vancouver Island and all of the inner South Coast and southern B.C., east to the Kootenay region, are under a special air quality statement.
"Wildfire smoke from fires in Washington and Oregon has moved northward into the region and is forecast to impact air quality through the weekend as a large mass of smoke move through," says Environment Canada in the statement issued for Metro Vancouver.
The agency also said the fine particulate matter advisory remains in effect for Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley Regional District due to wildfire smoke from outside the region.
SEE BELOW: SMOKE FORECAST IN B.C.
Environment Canada's air quality health index lists air quality at moderate to very high risk for many parts of southern B.C., meaning those with health issues should reduce outdoor activities. Air quality in Victoria and Metro Vancouver are expected to improve Monday. Environment Canada explains that "localized smoke concentrations may vary widely across the region as winds and temperatures change, and as wildfire behaviour changes."
The Air Quality Health Index for many south coast locations is "high risk". Poor air quality will persist through the weekend. Light blue in the image shows the areas of smoke. For more info on air quality alerts, visit: https://t.co/kn2Z2DWWOr #Smoke #AirQuality @GovCanHealth pic.twitter.com/gweYJKEypE— ECCC Weather British Columbia (@ECCCWeatherBC) September 11, 2020
"Exposure to PM2.5 is particularly a concern for people with underlying conditions such as lung disease, heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma, and/or diabetes, individuals with respiratory infections such as COVID-19, pregnant women and infants, children, and older adults. Individuals who are socially marginalized may also be at elevated risk," cautions Environment Canada.