The B.C. Air Quality Health Index shows that Kitimat and the rest of the North is slowly worsening in air quality. Monitoring stations are ranked as Low (1-3), Moderate (4-6), High (7-10), or Very High (+). (Government of B.C., DataBC, GeoBC map)

Air quality index raised to a ‘4’ in Kitimat

Wildfire smoke from the U.S. has been making its way north, affecting air quality

  • Sep. 18, 2020 12:00 a.m.

Environment Canada has listed Kitimat as a ‘4’ on the Air Quality Health Index due to smoke from U.S. wildfires.

READ MORE: U.S. wildfire smoke blankets B.C., wafts east to Alberta, affecting air quality

The index uses a scale of one to 10 to rank risk from stagnant or smoky air, and monitoring stations are ranked as Low (1-3), Moderate (4-6), High (7-10), or Very High (+). Most of the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island has been in the high category for the past several days, and have only recently started moving down to the higher end of the moderate category.

Kitimat has been in the low category since the smoke began making its way into B.C., but is now set to be in the moderate category for daytime Friday (Sept. 18), as the smoke slowly moves throughout the province and up north.

The smoke comes from hundreds of wildfires burning in Washington state, Oregon and California, that have destroyed whole communities and killed at least 35 people.

READ MORE: Some parts of B.C. enjoy better air quality but southern regions still affected

READ MORE: Air quality improves slightly in B.C. from U.S. wildfires

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