District of Vanderhoof - Message

June 2014

Something in the air

During my time on Council it has been my pleasure to sit on a number of committees and act as a liaison for other groups. The newest of these is the Air Quality Committee composed of myself, Brian Frenkel, Jerry Peterson, and Greg Tone. I think it came as a shock to most residents when the 2013 “State of the Air” report by the BC Lung Association claimed that Vanderhoof had the worst PM2.5 levels in British Columbia. PM2.5 is fine particulate smaller than 2.5 microns, for a comparison human hair is 50-70 microns thick.

The District had an emissions inventory completed in 2006, and while some factors may have changed since then, such as shutting down beehive burners, the general make-up of the pollution sources likely hasn’t changed. This report showed over 77% of the PM2.5 emissions come from area sources with the majority (over 44% of area emissions) being from heating followed by miscellaneous burning and fugitive dust.

It is the hope of the Committee that we will have an open house this the fall to discuss burning wood as cleanly as possible as well as potentially producing a guide on how to do this. We also hope to provide more information on Provincial programs such as the woodstove buyback program announced last week as it becomes available. I encourage anyone with questions about the Committee to contact me, and as always the meetings are open to the public.

~ Councillor Kevin Moutray