Environmental scientist has never seen air in Metro Vancouver this smoky

METRO VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – As a special air advisory continues in Metro Vancouver, we’re learning this is just about as bad as it gets anywhere.

When you look at the fact the Air Quality Health Index hit 10-plus on Sunday, environmental health scientist Dr. Sarah Henderson with the BC Centre for Disease Control says it’s the worst she can remember, putting us up there with what it’s normally like in some of the most polluted cities in the world.

“This is certainly an outstanding episode of poor air quality, there’s no doubt,” says Henderson. “I don’t remember it ever being this smoky in the Lower Mainland before.”

Henderson says the air quality is about as bad as it is normally in places like Delhi or Beijing.

“In terms of fine particulate matter concentrations, we’re currently sitting at what some of the most polluted cities would see on a day-to-day basis, but the composition might be different because this is forest fire smoke.”

As of 10am Monday, that advisory was extended to the Fraser Valley.

Elsewhere, air quality measurements were off the scale in Powell River due to the smoke.