A study of potential ice fog and low temperature water fog occurrence at Mildred Lake, Alberta

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  • In early 1976 a literature review of low temperature fog was carried out so that the potential for this fog type in the vicinity of the Syncrude synthetic crude oil complex could be assessed. Moreover, a site visit under suitable synoptic meteorological conditions was made in early March 1976 to determine the local controls on fog at low temperatures. The incidence of winter fogs at Mildred Lake is expected to increase due to the water vapour emitted by plant operations. However, evaporation from the large tailings pond is not expected to make a significant contribution, because during winter the pond should be frozen over except where the hot tailings enter. Additional dust and smoke particles may be associated with industrial operations and human activities. The presence of additional condensation or freezing nuclei will alter the temperatures at which fogs occur. However, the concentration and types of nuclei that may be present in the vicinity of the Syncrude plant have yet to be determined. Fogs are often accompanied by increased pollution levels in urban or industrialized areas because of the light winds and stable atmospheric conditions which accompany the fog. The depth of the layer through which the pollutants are mixed is shallow, only 10 to 100 metres, when low temperature fog occurs. Mixing of the elevated plant plumes with fog is unlikely to occur, because under the very stable atmospheric conditions associated with fog, the plumes diffuse slowly and remain above the fog layer.

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    Conditions of Use Murray, W.A. and J. Kurtz, 1976. A study of potential ice fog and low temperature water fog occurrence at Mildred Lake, Alberta. Syncrude Canada Ltd., Edmonton, Alberta. Environmental Research Monograph 1976-4. 63 pp. Permission for non-commercial use, publication or presentation of excerpts or figures is granted, provided appropriate attribution (as above) is cited. Commercial reproduction, in whole or in part, is not permitted without prior written consent. The use of these materials by the end user is done without any affiliation with or endorsement by Syncrude Canada Ltd. Reliance upon the end user's use of these materials is at the sole risk of the end user.