Skip to content

Air quality takes a dive from Vancouver to Hope as smoke blows in

Air quality advisory in effect for 2nd day obscuring mountain views and making breathing difficult
Provincial map of air quality health index shows eastern Fraser Valley taking the brunt of wildfire smoke across the region on Aug. 13, 2021. (Government of BC map)

The air quality took a dive across the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley overnight with some of the worst readings forecast for the eastern Fraser Valley for Friday (Aug. 13).

Fine particulates from wildfire smoke billowing into the region are obscuring the mountains and making it hard to breathe for those with respiratory issues or other chronic conditions.

An air quality advisory remains in effect from Vancouver to Hope for a second day, issued by Metro Vancouver for high concentrations of fine particulate matter due to smoke, as well as ozone levels due to the sun and heat.

RELATED: Smoke and ozone levels high as smoke blows in

The eastern Fraser Valley including Chilliwack, Agassiz-Harrison and Hope is forecast to be in the ‘very high’ range of the Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) with readings at 10+ as Friday wears on, as is the Central Fraser Valley for Abbotsford and Mission. Southeastern Metro Vancouver (Langley, Surrey East and parts of North Delta) is forecast to be ‘high’ at 9. The northeastern sections of Metro Vancouver had ‘low’ readings at 2 and 3, while the southwestern parts were at 5.

Check the AirMap from Metro Vancouver to monitor AQHI across the region or the AQHI provincial map.

Thursday’s AQ advisory pegged easterly outflow winds as the culprit bringing smoke from wildfires in B.C. and Washington into the region, contributing to elevated fine particulate matter concentrations and hazy skies.

Smoke concentrations and readings may vary widely as winds and temperatures fluctuate and as wildfire behaviour changes. To avoid the smoke, close doors and windows, run the air conditioning if possible, and air cleaners.

RELATED: Smoke from wildfires create health issues

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email:

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Smoke-filled skies on Alexander Avenue in downtown Chilliwack on Aug. 13, 2021. The air quality advisory remains in effect for the Fraser Valley and Metro Vancouver for a second day as winds blow smoke from wildfires into the region. (Jennifer Feinberg/ Chilliwack Progress)

Jennifer Feinberg

About the Author: Jennifer Feinberg

I have been a Chilliwack Progress reporter for 20+ years, covering the arts, city hall, as well as Indigenous, and climate change stories.
Read more