Fort Air Partnership (FAP), the organization that monitors the air local residents breathe, released today Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) results for the first six months of 2018.
Seven of FAP’s air monitoring stations collects data that is used by the Government of Alberta in the calculation each hour of the AQHI. There is increased health risk as the index number rises.
From January 1 to June 30, the index at those stations registered low risk readings the majority of the time. Bruderheim, followed closely by Lamont County, had the highest percentage of low risk readings and Fort Saskatchewan had the least. However all stations were in the low risk category more than 79% of the time.
In 2017 during the same period, stations were in the low risk category more than 93% of the time. The difference can largely be attributed to wintertime inversions in the Edmonton Metropolitan Region during the first quarter of 2018, particularly during March. A wintertime inversion is a weather condition where cold air along with pollutants is trapped near the ground by a layer of warm air.
Of the 26,677 hours monitored at the seven FAP stations in the first six months of 2018, only 28 hours reached the AQHI high risk category. Almost all were caused by wintertime inversions. Check out the Q2 and January-June, 2018 AQHI and exceedances results.