Special air quality statement issued for Calgary due to wildfire smoke

Jul 15 2021, 9:05 am

A special air quality statement has been issued for the city of Calgary, along with the heat warning that remains in place as high temperatures continue to sweep the province.

Environment Canada issued the air quality statement on Wednesday evening, noting that “wildfire smoke is causing poor air quality and reducing visibility.” The agency renewed the statement at 4:37 am on Thursday.

In addition to Calgary, air quality statements have been issued for eight other regions of the province.

air quality Calgary

Environment Canada

“Wildfire smoke is a constantly-changing mixture of particles and gasses which includes many chemicals that can harm your health,” says Environment Canada. They add that if you or anyone in your care are exposed to wildfire smoke, you should consider taking extra precautions to reduce exposure.

Environment Canada suggests visiting airhealth.ca for information on how to lower health risks and for current and forecast Air Quality Health Index values.

Calgary’s heat warning, renewed by Environment Canada at 4:40 am on Thursday, comes several weeks after much of western Canada was affected by a historic heat wave that broke record high temperatures in Alberta and British Columbia.

The warning was initially put in effect for Calgary on Tuesday, and it has now been renewed for the second day in a row.

“Daytime high temperatures ranging from 29ºC to 33ºC combined with overnight lows of 14ºC to 17ºC are expected through next week for much of central and southern Alberta,” reads the government agency’s website.

In Calgary, temperatures in the high 20s and low 30s are forecast to continue into next week, with a chance of showers and thunderstorms on Friday.

air quality Calgary

Environment Canada

The government agency advises residents and visitors in the province to take the following precautions:

  • Consider rescheduling outdoor activities to cooler hours of the day
  • Take frequent breaks from the heat, and spend time in cool, indoor spaces when possible
  • Drink plenty of water and other non-alcoholic, non-caffeinated beverages to stay hydrated
  • Check for your children or pets before you exit your vehicle, and don’t leave any person or pet inside a closed vehicle for any length of time

Additionally, people should monitor for heat stroke or heat exhaustion symptoms, including high body temperature, lack of sweat, confusion, fainting, and unconsciousness.

Environment Canada says that heat warnings are issued when very high-temperature conditions are expected to pose an elevated risk of heat illnesses, such as heat stroke or heat exhaustion.

Elle McLeanElle McLean

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