Outdoor activity is important for children to stay healthy. The Air Quality Flag Program encourages outdoor activity on good air days, while providing information and suggestions on protecting health during times when air quality is poor.
Children may be more at risk from poor air quality because they are often active outside, have less developed respiratory systems and inhale more air per kilogram of body weight compared to adults.
The Air Quality Flag Program:
1) Educates children, teachers and school communities about the Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) and how to use it, day-to-day, much like people check weather reports.
2) Increases awareness that “air days” can change, just like the weather, and when air days are bad, there are things people can do to protect their health.
3) Encourages information sharing with family members and friends.
Air quality flags – in blue, grey, brown and red colours – are flown each day to help people understand what the air quality is like based on the AQHI. The AQHI is a scale from 1 to 10 that measures air quality in relation to health. The lower the number, the lower the health risk associated with the air quality.
The Air Quality Flag Program is intended to raise awareness within school communities about;
- Air quality and its effects on health.
- How changes in local air quality conditions can affect health.
- How to protect health in times of poor air quality, especially when experiencing symptoms.