The lid of frigid air that remains clamped over B.C. is creating another problem for the Smithers area, Prince George and parts of Vancouver Island including Port Alberni and the Comox Valley.

The Environment Ministry and health authorities in the affected areas have issued air quality advisories because cold weather is holding stagnant air in place, raising pollution levels that are especially difficult for children, seniors or anyone with heart or lung disease.

It's a different situation on inland sections of the north coast, where strong winds pushing out to the coast are causing wind chill -- making the temperature feel close to minus 20, although conditions should ease by midday.

And extreme cold still grips the Elk Valley and Yoho National Park in southeastern B.C., where wind chill values to minus 40 are forecast today.