Edmonton Chokes on Wildfire Smoke, Yet Brave Vendors Keep Markets Alive


The city of Edmonton continues to be enveloped by smoke, as air quality warnings remain in effect throughout the Labour Day weekend. The capital region is shrouded in an ominous cloud of wildfire smoke, making breathing difficult and hampering outdoor activities since Saturday. Predictions from Environment Canada indicate that this situation is expected to linger until at least Tuesday.

Despite these ominous conditions, some Edmontonians have chosen to brave the outdoors during the long weekend. Among them, individuals including Chris Tohercroisi, don’t want to remain confined indoors. He told CTV News, “Even though online updates say the condition is bad outside, I couldn’t let myself stay cooped up indoors for the entire long weekend, hence I opted to spend some time at the 124 Grand Market.”

The deteriorating air quality made four vendors abstain from participating in this weekend’s market, yet others persevered, geared up to sell their freshly harvested produce. Julianne Sherwin, from The Public Food Hub, highlighted the critical importance of these markets for vendors, stating, “Their entire weekend goes into preparing for these markets after having harvested their produce. Any cancellation of these events can result in a significant blow to them.”

With the current state of air quality, strenuous outdoor activities are strongly advised against by Environment Canada. Risk groups, including people with lung conditions, the elderly, and pregnant women, are particularly vulnerable to the effects of wildfire smoke. Grace Lam, an adult respirologist at the University of Alberta Hospital, recommends staying indoors with all windows and doors closed to keep the polluted air from seeping in.


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