The air quality in and around Calgary is taking a turn for the worse Friday afternoon and evening.
Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) issued a special air quality statement Friday afternoon, expecting elevated pollution levels “until later this evening” in Calgary and surrounding Rocky View County.
“Individuals may experience symptoms such as increased coughing, throat irritation, headaches or shortness of breath,” ECCC wrote.
“Children, seniors, and those with cardiovascular or lung disease, such as asthma, are especially at risk.”
Extreme weather patterns in store for much of Canada as 2022 kicks off
Global News weather anchor Jodi Hughes said the increase in air pollution isn’t able to escape surface elevations because of an “inversion.”
IHU COVID-19 variant not ‘circulating widely at the moment,’ WHO says
Severe illness not rising as fast as ‘enormous’ number of Omicron infections: Tam
“Generally speaking, air cools as it rises in the atmosphere. Right now, however, we are experiencing a temperature inversion, where the colder air is being trapped closer to the surface thanks to a layer of warmer air that is sitting above it,” Hughes said. “That warmer air essentially acts like a lid, suppressing normal vertical mixing.
“Without that upward movement, pollutants and particulates are also trapped closer to the surface and can impact our air quality.”
The federal climate agency advised people who are experiencing symptoms like coughing or sore throat to reschedule or reduce any strenuous outdoor activities until the special air quality statement is lifted.
Tents moved outside Calgary homeless shelter as outreach groups field cold weather calls
© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.