News / Vancouver

Air quality advisory lifted as smoke clears from Lower Mainland

A mixture of cooler temperatures, wind direction, and rain cleared the wildfire smoke that had plagued the region since the beginning of August.

This photo of Kitsilano Beach in Vancouver was taken days before smoke from forest fires in B.C.'s interior arrived, prompting an air quality advisory that lasted two weeks.

Jeff Hodson / Metro Order this photo

This photo of Kitsilano Beach in Vancouver was taken days before smoke from forest fires in B.C.'s interior arrived, prompting an air quality advisory that lasted two weeks.

Lower Mainland residents breathed a sigh of relief this weekend as wind and rain cleared the dense layer of smoke that had been covering the South Coast for the past two weeks.
 
Forest fires continue to burn in B.C.’s interior but levels of particulate matter in the Metro Vancouver region have dropped back down to “very low values” due to a reversal of wind patterns, according to meteorologist Lisa West, from Environment Canada.
 
“The weather pattern has done a 180 – it has completely flipped.”
 
Winds coming in from the ocean are now blowing smoke from forest fires eastward, away from coastal regions, she explained. Saturday night’s light rain could have also helped combat any remaining smoke in the area, she said.
 
“We had light rainfall with that cold front and behind it we have westerly winds and that’s going to continue to blow any smoke from the forest fires further east into B.C. and perhaps even into the Prairie provinces.”
 
The forecast shows this weather pattern, and the cooler temperatures that come with it, will hold for at least the next 10 days.
 
“In the short term we seem to be in the clear.”
 
There is a 60 per cent chance of rain Tuesday, and temperatures will hover around the 20-degree mark for the next few days, according to Environment Canada.
 
Metro Vancouver residents were under an air quality advisory from July 31 to August 12.

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