Data from 10 new PurpleAir monitors being installed in Williams Lake will be uploaded to an air quality map website run by University of Northern British Columbia. (cyclone.unbc.ca/aqmap website screen shot)

Data from 10 new PurpleAir monitors being installed in Williams Lake will be uploaded to an air quality map website run by University of Northern British Columbia. (cyclone.unbc.ca/aqmap website screen shot)

Williams Lake city hall one of 10 locations for new PurpleAir monitors

Scout Island Nature Centre is in charge of installing the monitors

PurpleAir monitors purchased by Atlantic Power and Pinnacle Renewable Energy Inc. are being installed in Williams Lake, including at city hall.

The monitors measure particulate matter PM2.5, uploading data continuously, said Martin Kruss, educator educator co-ordinator with Scout Island Nature Centre, the organization leading the project with support from the Ministry of Environment.

“PM 2.5 means the particles are 2.5 micrometres across, so just beyond human sight,” Kruus said in news release issued by the city. “A simple way to think about it is say you get a face full of dust from a passing car. Sometimes your eyes can get itchy and your nose runs, so your upper respiratory system is catching those bigger particles. But the stuff that’s a little finer can get down into your lungs and possibly do human harm, and that’s what we’re monitoring for.”

So far Kruus has installed the monitors at Scout Island Nature Centre at the nature house, city hall, South Lakeside Drive, Westridge Drive, North Lakeside Drive, Commodore Crescent and near the Williams Lake Golf and Tennis Club.

Three other locations proposed are the Williams Lake fire hall, Glendale North and at Columneetza Secondary School where the ministry has its own air quality monitoring station.

READ MORE: Atlantic Power, Pinnacle Renewable, Scout Island collaborate on air quality monitoring

In a previous interview about the project, Dr. Peter Jackson, professor of environmental science at University of Northern British Columbia, told the Tribune the data will be uploaded on an air quality website run by the university.

The website, cyclone.unbc.ca/aqmap was developed two and half years ago by Brayden Nilson, a masters student at UNBC from Fort St. John.



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Martin Kruus, education co-ordinator with Scout Island Nature Centre, has been installing the monitors (one seen behind him) at various locations, including city hall. (City of Williams Lake photo)

Martin Kruus, education co-ordinator with Scout Island Nature Centre, has been installing the monitors (one seen behind him) at various locations, including city hall. (City of Williams Lake photo)