The monitoring and management of air quality in the Edmonton region is the shared responsibility of multiple parties including Alberta Environment, various industrial approval holders and various multi-stakeholder groups. The monitoring and management of air quality is a rapidly evolving field that is based on continuous improvement and risk-based management.
Air Quality Monitoring
Currently, the ambient air quality monitoring network in Edmonton is operated jointly by the provincial government and various industry groups. There are three ambient air quality monitoring stations that are configured to measure air contaminants and calculate the provincial air quality health index (AQHI). These three stations are directly managed by Alberta Environment. Alberta Environment also operates a fourth station that measures only particulate matter (Edmonton McIntyre).
In addition to the Province’s stations, there are six industry-operated stations that are situated around industrial areas in the east and west areas of the City. These six stations monitor air quality contaminant concentrations that are specific to the provincial approvals that relate to each of the industrial operators.
Air Quality Health Index
In July 2011, the Province of Alberta, in partnership with Environment Canada, launched the Air Quality Health Index (AQHI).
The AQHI is a tool that assesses the impact of air pollution on your health, listing a number from 1 to 10+ to indicate the level of immediate health risk associated with local air quality. The higher the number, the greater the risk and your need to take precautions.
The AQHI reports this information in near-real time as well as provides a forecast for the next day.
Available for iOS, Android and BlackBerry
Are you a municipality or other stakeholder?
or read more about the AQHI and opportunities to share information with the public.
Managing Improving Air Quality in the Edmonton Region
The majority of air quality concerns in the Edmonton region are a result of the refinement and/or combustion of carbon-based energy sources either at a point source (i.e. industrial emissions) or through diffuse sources (i.e. on-road transportation). The issue of maintaining good air quality is complex and it requires on-going monitoring and in-depth understanding of meteorology and the sources of emissions.
The City of Edmonton is committed to maintaining Edmonton’s good air quality and works with its regional partners to develop programs designed to effectively manage emissions in the region.
The City of Edmonton actively participates in the Alberta Capital Airshed, which is a multi-stakeholder group that provides a forum for local stakeholders to design solutions to local air quality issues. Through this partnership, it has initiated work on Idle-Free Education Programs, assisted with the development and implementation of the Ozone Management Plan and initiated a comprehensive Air Quality Monitoring Network Assessment to ensure that air quality in Edmonton is measured and reported in a manner that is scientifically sound.
For more information:
City Environmental Strategies
8th Floor, HSBC Bank Place
10250-101 Street NW
In Edmonton: 311