2012 Air Quality Round Table AGM

Quesnel Air Quality Roundtable January 31, 2012 10AM – 2PM

Quesnel City Hall Council Chambers Meeting Minutes:

In attendance: Andy Daigleish – C&C Wood Products, Dora McMillan – Past Chair, Matt Lamb-York – M.O.E., Arvind Saraswat – M.O.E (Bio included in meeting notes), Wayne Strang -Cariboo Pulp and Paper, Wes Weib – M.O.T., Kristine Lamble – M.O.T., Tanya Turner – City of Quesnel, Councillor Roodenburg – City of Quesnel, Director Dixon Warren – Cariboo Regional District, Barb Oke – Northern Health, Anna Rankin – Quesnel River Pulp, Keith Carter – QRP/West Fraser, Norm Zirnhelt – Cariboo Environmental Quality Consulting Ltd., Dorie Havens – Climate Action Group, Peter Walsh – Chair, Tracy Bond – Baker Creek Enhancement Society

1.    Introductions by each Roundtable member

2.    Presentation – Norm Zirnhelt, Cariboo Environmental Quality Consulting Ltd.

* All roundtable members should read the airshed plan especially the rationale for recommendations:

  1. History
    1. Prior to airshed plan there was polarization
    2. Now everyone is working together
    3. In early 2000’s. Lots of “finger pointing” about the causes of poor air quality
    4. Needed better air quality monitoring and a good air quality assessment
    5. Fine Particulates, PM 10 and PM 2.5, are the pollutants of concern. Total Reduced Sulphur (TRS) has been reduced substantially by industry in Quesnel
  1. Air Quality Assessment
    1. Reviewed flow chart in Section 3 of the Quesnel Air Shed Management Plan. See attached.
    2. Reviewed Key findings in Section 3.6 of Quesnel Air Shed Management Plan
    3. Reviewed Main Conclusions
      1. Air Quality issues are the result of a combined impact of a large number of sources
      2. To improve PM 2.5, reductions are required from (permitted sources, fugitive and road dust sources, residential sources, commercial sources and the transportation sector)
      3. Review of Air Quality Goals-Diagram on page 6 of Airshed Managment Plan – Goal of PM 10 levels at less than 40mg/m3 and PM 2.5 at less than 18 mg/m3
  1. Airshed Management Plan – 5 Year Review (on website)
    1. Reviewed methods of review
    2. Reviewed conclusions
    3. Reviewed recommendations
  1. Quesnel Air Quality Roundtable – Action Plan
    1. Memorandum of Understanding with Baker Creek Enhancement Society
    2. Reviewed Implementation Workplan
    3. Discussed long term funding options: Roundtable will enter into 5 year funding agreement with Baker Creek Enhancement Society to provide long term planning capabilities.

Overall Conclusions: Everyone has done something, no-one has done everything, all can do more.
3.    Monitoring Agreement Discussion – Arvind Saraswat, Meteorologist – Ministry of Environment (See Attached Bio of New Meteorologist)

  1. Discussion and agreement to extend the Monitoring Agreement to December 2012 at that time there will be more information to make better decisions about future monitoring

Discussion Notes:

  • All of industry contributes to regular monitoring and improvements. Ministry of Environment contributes staff time for maintenance and monitoring.
  • Quesnel is part of National Air Pollution Surveillance Network
  • New equipment is coming to replace our outdated equipment, for which parts are not available.
  • No clear equipment winner yet. Need to monitor duplicate equipment to establish valid data records.
  • Roundtable needs to extend contract for at least one year, to better reflect different measuring yields of PM 2.5 results, between old equipment and new equipment.
  • MOE may only be able to replace the equipment at the National Air Pollution Surveillance site at QJS, but budgets don’t allow for all three to be replaced.
  • Ambient measurement levels may increase over the year, reflecting better monitoring equipment not changes in actual PM levels.
  • QAQR wants to be able to continue to measure changes in quality, need comparable station locations to do so, therefore keeping “extra” stations.
  • See bcairquality.ca. for current air quality readings

4. Speciation Update – Arvind Saraswat

  1. Discussion on waiting for data from Environment Canada on the Speciation testing that was done in Quesnel
  2. Options are:
    1. To wait until Environment Canada completes the work, as there will be no cost
    2. To hire consultant, will be done quickly but will cost a lot
    3. To work with University to get it done, will take longer than consultant but will cost less.
    4. Agreement that Arvind Saraswat will investigate option C and costs involved and get feedback from the Roundtable as needed in order to move forward.
  1. Discussion of Action Plan – Where do we go from here, how do we get there, and how will we know that we have arrived at that destination?

Agreement of Action Plan (To be posted on website once meeting notes have been approved)

Discussion Notes:

1. Extend contract and plan to 2016. Agreed.

2. Better engagement with public. Public has misconception, that the problem is all industry’s fault.

3. Roundtables’ changing membership, needs mentoring to get the new member up to date with Roundtable business.

4. Public meeting Speaker Dr Bauer. BCES and the QART will bring in a speaker in the Fall to engage public on Air Quality issues.

5. Target public groups, Chamber of Commerce, service clubs for updates to the status of Air Quality in Quesnel.

6. Develop an adaptable model for sustainable progress.

7. Stake holder reports need consistency, follow a template, be submitted on time, reviewed and reported back to members by a QAQR sub-committee.

8. Reports to show how it improves air Quality.

9. Governance should remain a consensus format model, and not become a separate Society.

10. No provincial goals at the start, now our goals are better than Province’s goals that are set.

11. Funding is shared by MOE, City, CRD. Dora McMillan (Past Chair) lobbied and won funding for the development of the Roundtable and the Management Plan.

12. Baker Creek Society was pipeline for funding and the delivery of Air Quality Education such as the Wood Stove Exchange, Clean Air Day, and Emissions Testing. Funding is year to year and needs certainty; hence a five year plan is being negotiated with the MOE. MOE in Kamloops is installing a web cam to “see” during air quality episodes. Good idea.

13. Anna Rankin to make a presentation to a special QAQR meeting.

14. Long term, develop a dispersion model and a map of PM2.5 levels in Quesnel costing an estimated $37K.

15. A City and CRD Joint planning Session presentation will be developed for the future.

16. Sources of funding for Air Quality Analysis and/or new equipment were discussed. (City, CRD, NDI, Quesnel Community Foundation, Special Operating Funds)

  1. Next meeting date – Annual Reports due May 15th
  1. June 6th and June 13, two Tuesdays. Action Plan – All actions were agreed to by consensus.

Discussion Notes:

1. A self assessment report template will be developed with consultations with stakeholders, to provide consistency of information reported.

2. All stakeholders will be requested to complete the template format report for 2011’s report.

3. A subcommittee of QAQR volunteers will review the reports and submit their findings to the June meetings.

7.    Adjournment


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