Special air quality statement issued in Toronto over wildfire smoke

Jul 25 2021, 2:44 pm

Environment Canada has issued a special air quality statement for the City of Toronto ahead of “high levels” of air pollution expected in the city.

The statement was issued around 3 pm on Sunday, and warns that wildfire smoke is causing poor air quality and reducing visibility.

“Smoke plumes from active forest fires in northwestern Ontario might affect portions of southern Ontario this afternoon,” the statement reads.

“Particulate matter combining with ground level ozone may deteriorate the air quality.”

Toronto’s air quality is currently listed as “moderate risk” on theĀ Air Quality Health Index. It’s expected to remain at that level until Tuesday.

Wildfire smoke contains a multitude of chemicals that can be harmful to people’s health, Environment Canada said, adding that residents should take precautions to avoid exposure.

Exposure to wildfire smoke can lead to symptoms such as increased coughing, throat irritation, headaches, and shortness of breath.

Children, seniors, and those with cardiovascular or lung disease are especially at risk.

Environment Canada warns that the smoky conditions may persist into Monday as the wildfires continue to burn.

According to the province, there are currently 133 active wildfires burning in Ontario.

Zoe DemarcoZoe Demarco

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