Are the pollution levels bad in Vancouver right now?

Turns out the notification was wrong.

A notification about high levels of pollution over parts of Metro Vancouver on Thursday night was an error.

At about 8 pm, some websites like BreezoMeter and weather apps were issuing warnings about the air quality, with an index of seven to 11 and a “high health risk” to a “very high health risk.”

Apple’s weather application had an air quality alert saying the primary pollutant was “nitrogen oxides,” which typically come from traffic, fire and power plants. Similar to alerts issued during wildfire season, the notice advised people to reduce or reschedule strenuous outdoor activities if they had a cough or sore throat.

Glacier Media reached out to air quality specialists at Metro Vancouver to find out more.

It turns out, there were no elevated levels of pollution.

“I checked in with our air quality team and learned there was a data reporting error a few days ago that resulted in incorrect ground-level ozone readings on the provincial air quality feed, which is likely the source BreezeoMeter is using,” says a spokesperson with Metro Vancouver.

The spokesperson noted Metro Vancouver’s AirMap.ca data was not affected by the error and that staff are working with other agencies to correct the mistake.

Through an image provided to Glacier Media, the readings from the Second Narrows station shows that ozone levels have been normal all week and well below the target threshold.

Metro Vancouver is reminding people that the most reliable and accurate air quality data can be found on AirMap.ca.

Photo: AirMap.ca

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