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MEDIA RELEASE: WBEA translates project video for Cree & Dene stakeholders

Fort McMurray, Alberta – In its continued effort to better inform and engage with Aboriginal community members, the Wood Buffalo Environmental Association (WBEA) has translated its newest informational video into Cree and Dene languages. The video features the Association’s Community Odour Monitoring Project, and highlights findings from the pilot year.

Odours remain an issue in some communities within the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo (RMWB). In 2013 the Community Odour Monitoring Project was launched to identify and monitor odours in the air. The first year of the project involved 35 volunteers in the community of Fort McMurray who were trained to detect and track a variety of common regional odours during the course of their daily activities.

The newly translated video highlights key findings from the 2013/2014 project year:

  • 156 individual odour observations were made by the volunteers during the course of the project year (June 1, 2013 – May 31, 2014).
  • The odours of Asphalt/Tar (38 reports), Fuel/Solvent (41 reports) and Burnt/Smoke (24 reports) were the most frequently reported of the 10 odour categories.
  • 56% more odours were observed in the first quarter of the project year (June 1, 2013 – August 31, 2013) than in the subsequent quarters.
  • Of all observation received, 91% came through the website (including the mobile version), and 97% were submitted by participants that declared being healthy and thus presenting no congestion that might interfere with the sense of smell or may affect the nature of their observation.
     

WBEA will use the data collected through the Community Odour Monitoring Project to better understand the odour patterns impacting the community of Fort McMurray. Data gathered will also be used to inform the public and to address the odour concerns of local residents. Others can use the data to better understand which of their activities may be causing an odour problem, and how to best control odours.

The short video, titled WBEA Community Odour Monitoring Project, can be viewed on WBEA’s YouTube Channel in English, Cree and Dene:http://www.youtube.com/WoodBuffaloEnvAssoc.

The Community Odour Monitoring Project is currently operating for a second year in Fort McMurray. If you are a resident of Fort McMurray and would like more information, or are interested in participating, please contact WBEA at 780-799-4420.