The Prince George Airshed is:
The Prince George airshed is generally considered to run from the northern city limits, south as far as the end of the BCR site, west to the western edge of Beaverly, and east as far as Tabor Lake. View the Prince George Airshed map for visual reference.
Location and Topography:
Prince George’s airshed is strongly affected by its location at the confluence of two large rivers: the Nechako River and the Fraser River. The city’s downtown core (known as the ‘bowl’ area) is located within these two river valleys. Residential and light industrial development, as well as the Prince George Airport, characterizes the plateaus of the city. Beyond the city’s developed boundaries is forest and agricultural land, along with rural residential properties.
Prince George is subject to a variety of factors that can combine to cause elevated pollutant concentrations in the airshed. Prince George has numerous pollutant sources within its boundaries, such as heavy industry, (including the pulp and paper industry and the petroleum refining industry), residential heating and wood smoke, road dust and transportation emissions. Combined with frequent light winds and wintertime thermal inversions, these conspire with valley terrain to trap pollutants within the community.
In addition to those sources located within the city’s boundaries, Prince George has been subject to external sources of pollution from wildfires. In some years, wildfire smoke can be a significant source of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) in Prince George’s airshed.