Third Quarter Air Quality Results Show Low Health Risk

Posted on October 8, 2020

Our 2020 third quarter Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) results show that for the vast majority of time the risk to health to local residents was low. The Government of Alberta calculates the AQHI using data collected at seven of FAP’s air monitoring stations. 

There was only one hour of high AQHI and no very high risk hours during the quarter. The attributed cause for the high AQHI reading was the burning of residential yard waste near the station in Gibbons. Overall air quality in and around Alberta’s Industrial Heartland was of low risk to health more than 99% of the time from July 1 to September 30, 2020. The air monitoring station at Gibbons recorded the most hours of moderate or high AQHI results while Redwater recorded the least.

As a comparison, here were the results from the third quarter of 2019.

The major difference between last year and this year is Q3 of 2020 saw 62 more AQHI moderate risk hours and one high risk hour. The increased number of hours is largely due to particulate matter contained in smoke that drifted into the region in mid to late September from U.S. wildfires. Click here for the Q3 2020 summary report including exceedances.