The KTCAC received funding for its Passive Air Monitoring Program

Hillary Johnson

The Kitimat Terrace Clean Air Coalition acquired requested funding of $3000 from the District of Kitimat in support of the Passive Air Monitoring program. The monitoring would be conducted in a four-month segment, from June to October of this year. The program is a continuation of the seasonal citizen science studies held in the summer of 2018 and 2019.

With the approved support, they anticipate having ten sampling stations in the Kitimat area at the same locations as the previous two years. In addition to the sulphur dioxide (SO2) passive air sampling, they plan to add a sampling of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) to two of the planned stations. Kitimat Mayor Phil Germuth says council values the work the society has conducted over the years.

"Last year, when they did it, it did validate a lot of the readings that Rio Tinto was getting on their air monitors, but it also showed us that there was a higher concentration in the service center. From that information, we were able to request from the Ministry of the Environment and Rio Tinto that a separate air monitoring station would be put in the service center, and it's there now."

The organization has decided to focus the NO2 samplings at stations on the west side of the Kitimat River, in the direction they believe the strong emissions drift.

"It seems that that's where basically many of the emissions from industry given how the prevailing winds are in Kitimat that where you would expect emissions from any of the industry is to basically collect would be down the west side of the valley."

The society will share the resulting information of all the samples in the program with the District of Kitimat. In the written presentation to council, the organization expressed their appreciation for past financial support.

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