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Air Quality

NWT Air Regulations Development - Have your say!

The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) is working on the development of the Northwest Territories (NWT) Air Regulations and associated amendments to the Environmental Protection Act (EPA). This is an initiative to manage emissions to the air and protect air quality in the Northwest Territories (NWT).

The GNWT conducted stakeholder engagement and consultation on a proposed Air Regulatory Framework (the Framework) and EPA amendments between June 17 and September 16, 2016. We received excellent feedback from multiple Aboriginal governments and organizations and a variety of stakeholders. This information is being used to modify the content of the Framework and ultimately inform NWT Air Regulations.

Once a revised Framework is completed and the NWT Air Regulations are drafted, a second round of engagement will be conducted to inform interested stakeholders and to seek additional input.

Based on the volume of feedback and the topics raised during the last engagement and consultation period, the GNWT is revisiting the timelines for the development and implementation of this important initiative. 

If you have any questions or concerns, please email or call 867-767-9236 ext. 53185.

​Air and Precipitation Monitoring Network

The Government of the Northwest Territories works collaboratively with Environment Canada’s Canadian Air and Precipitation Monitoring Network (CAPMoN) to run the network station at Snare Rapids. The station, located about 140 km northwest of Yellowknife, has been operating for three decades in partnership with Northwest Territories Power Corporation. The data from the Snare Rapids station assist in the study of regional patterns and trends of atmospheric pollutants in air and precipitation.

Air Quality Monitoring Program

The Government of the Northwest Territories operates four state-of-the-art continuous ambient air quality monitoring stations across the Northwest Territories, as well as the Giant Mine Ambient Air Quality Site. Stations are located in Fort Smith, Inuvik, Norman Wells and Yellowknife. Each of these stations sample and analyze air quality on a continuous basis for a variety of parameters including dust and chemicals. The network is part of the National Air Pollution Surveillance Network (NAPS), a federal program operated across the country.

Data from our four stations and the Giant Mine monitoring site is available in almost real-time to the public on the Air Quality Monitoring Program website. The site also provides information on the monitoring network, including current and historical air quality monitoring data and additional related information.


Annual reports

The GNWT publishes annual NWT Air Quality Reports. These reports summarize the air quality information collected for the given year. Each report also provides information on, the air quality monitoring network operations, air pollutants monitored, air quality standards used to assess the monitoring results and discussion of trends in NWT air quality.

The Air Quality Management System was developed collaboratively under the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment to be a comprehensive and consistent approach to managing air quality in all jurisdictions across the country.
A primary component of the Air Quality Monitoring System is air zone management.

Air zones are local management areas, established by provinces and territories, to enable air quality objectives to be met based on local influences, such as emissions sources, geographical, socio-economic and meteorological factors.

Position papers

The Government of the Northwest Territories has issued two positions papers for use by municipal government officials in areas dealing with open burning at local landfills, burning and demolition of buildings in communities and fires extinguisher training.