Provincial Airsheds and AEMERA working together to enhance air quality monitoring in Alberta

EDMONTON, March 21, 2016 /CNW/ - The Alberta Environmental Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting Agency (AEMERA) and the Alberta Airsheds Council (AAC) are collaborating to improve and strengthen air quality monitoring throughout the province.

Today, AEMERA and the AAC – which represents Alberta's nine Airsheds – signed off on a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that will see the two parties work together to strengthen and better integrate province-wide environmental air quality monitoring, evaluation and reporting.

"AEMERA and the AAC have worked collaboratively over the past several months to establish this formal agreement," said Jay Nagendran, President and CEO of AEMERA. "The MOU outlines how we will work together going forward. It is a clear and demonstrated commitment to strengthen linkages between AEMERA and regional Airsheds to identify gaps in the monitoring network, and to ultimately provide a more complete and robust picture of ambient air quality in our province."

The MOU describes a common purpose between the two parties and some of the specific tasks outlined include: a province-wide review of the operation and alignment of air monitoring stations; an annual provincial forum to discuss the MOU, work plan, and current and emerging air quality issues; and, a commitment by all Airsheds to provide air monitoring data to AEMERA for online, public sharing.

"This MOU marks an important milestone for air quality monitoring in Alberta," said AAC Co-Chair, Nadine Blaney. "Not only does this allow us to be better connected to one another, but it recognizes and supports the on-the-ground regional monitoring work being done by each Airshed."

To support the work to be delivered under the MOU, AEMERA will provide funding to the AAC in support of the development and implementation of a provincial framework for air monitoring, evaluation and reporting.

Additional funding arrangements will be made between AEMERA and each of the province's Airsheds to support their important ongoing work.

Alberta has nine regional Airsheds, all of which are members of the AAC, and as a result will be actively engaged in the work under the MOU:

  • Alberta Capital Airshed
  • Calgary Region Airshed Zone
  • Fort Air Partnership
  • Lakeland Industry & Community Association
  • Parkland Airshed Management Zone
  • Palliser Airshed Society
  • Peace Airshed Zone Association
  • Wood Buffalo Environmental Association
  • West Central Airshed Society

The Alberta Environmental Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting Agency (AEMERA) is an arm's length provincial agency responsible for measuring, assessing and informing policy makers, regulators and the public on the condition of Alberta's environment on key ambient air, water, land and biodiversity indicators including information necessary to understand cumulative effects. http://aemera.org/ 

The Alberta Airsheds Council identifies and advocates for common interests of Alberta Airshed Zones. The Council also facilitates communication and cooperation between Airsheds Zones and between Airshed Zones and stakeholders.

SOURCE AEMERA

Image with caption: "Jay Nagendra, President & CEO, AEMERA; Nadine Blaney Co-Chair, Alberta Airsheds Council; and Gary Redmond Co-Chair, Alberta Airsheds Council (CNW Group/AEMERA)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20160321_C4994_PHOTO_EN_647468.jpg

Image with caption: "Alberta Environmental Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting Agency (AEMERA) (CNW Group/AEMERA)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20160321_C4994_PHOTO_EN_647467.jpg

Image with caption: "Alberta Airsheds Council (CNW Group/AEMERA)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20160321_C4994_PHOTO_EN_647592.jpg

For further information: Melissa Pennell, Director of Communications, AEMERA, 780-229-7254, 780-221-1458 (mobile), melissa.pennell@aemera.org; Nadine Blaney, Co-Chair, Alberta Airsheds Council, 780-289-6631, nadine.blaney@fortairmail.org; Gary Redmond, Co-Chair, Alberta Airsheds Council, 780-935-4279, gredmond@capitalairshed.ca

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