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SDGs

Air Quality Health Index (AQHI)

Why This Matters

Clean, healthy air is a central component of a sustainable natural environment. The quality of air affects our health and ability to be active in the outdoors and is a reflection of the type and amount of energy we use. To measure the quality of our city’s air, Peg uses the Air Quality Health Index (AQHI).

The AQHI is calculated based on relative risk of exposure to a combination of three common pollutants; Ground-level Ozone (O3), Fine Particulate Matter (PM2.5) and Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2). The AQHI is measured from 0 (No Risk) to 10+ (Very High Risk). Days without a recorded AQHI measure of 4 or more were considered low risk days.

Measure and Limitations

Recognizing that concentrations different pollutants have a serious effect on human health, the Government of Canada adopted the Air Quality Health Index (AQHI). The AQHI is designed as a health protection tool to help individuals “make decisions to protect [their] health by limiting short-term exposure to air pollution.” (GoC, 2016). The AQHI is “calculated based on the relative risk of a combination of common air pollutants that is known to harm human health (GoC, 2016)”; Ground-level Ozone (O3), Fine Particulate Matter (PM2.5) and Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2). To measure air quality using the AQHI, PEG reports on the percent of Low Risk Health Days.

Data Source

Government of Canada (2016) About the Air Quality Health Index. Retrieved from https://www.canada.ca/en/environment-climate-change/services/air-quality-health-index/about.html#What_is_AQHI

Air Quality Health Index (AQHI)

 
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Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) Sustainable Development Goals

3. Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages
3. Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages

3. Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages

Ensuring healthy lives and promoting the well-being for all at all ages is essential to sustainable development. Significant strides have been made in increasing life expectancy and reducing some of the common killers associated with child and maternal mortality. Major progress has been made on increasing access to clean water and sanitation, reducing malaria, tuberculosis, polio and the spread of HIV/AIDS. However, many more efforts are needed to fully eradicate a wide range of diseases and address many different persistent and emerging health issues.

Related Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) Targets

3.9

By 2030, substantially reduce the number of deaths and illnesses from hazardous chemicals and air, water and soil pollution and contamination

11. Make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable
11. Make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable

11. Make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable

Cities are hubs for ideas, commerce, culture, science, productivity, social development and much more. At their best, cities have enabled people to advance socially and economically.

However, many challenges exist to maintaining cities in a way that continues to create jobs and prosperity while not straining land and resources. Common urban challenges include congestion, lack of funds to provide basic services, a shortage of adequate housing and declining infrastructure.

The challenges cities face can be overcome in ways that allow them to continue to thrive and grow, while improving resource use and reducing pollution and poverty. The future we want includes cities of opportunities for all, with access to basic services, energy, housing, transportation and more.

Related Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) Targets

11.6

By 2030, reduce the adverse per capita environmental impact of cities, including by paying special attention to air quality and municipal and other waste management