Breaking News: WHO Releases New Air Quality Guidelines

Our BreatheEasy project continues to measure air quality at different sites across the Ottawa region.How is the air in Ottawa? Generally speaking, the air quality in our city is fairly good. However, we have also identified a number of air pollution “hot spots”.As part of the project, we try to stay current with what is happening in this subject area across the world. Here is some late breaking news. Just a few days ago, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that it is changing its guidelines for recommended air pollution levels, making them almost 50% more stringent than before. Based on these new recommendations from the WHO, and using the results of the monitoring we have done so far in our project, we can say that we have found many areas in the city where the air pollution levels exceed these new guidelines. It is worth noting that Canada’s own current guidelines for acceptable air pollution levels are not as strict as those recommended in this new WHO announcement. Hopefully Health Canada will use these new guidelines to amend Canada’s guidelines accordingly.- Jake ColeProject leader, BreatheEasy