A man wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 is silhouetted while walking on Ambleside Pier at sunset, in West Vancouver on Sunday, Jan. 3, 2021. (Darryl Dyck / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

British Columbia entered the new year in a provincial state of emergency, a declaration that will likely remain in place for at least another two weeks.

The state was renewed by officials for the 22nd time on Tuesday afternoon.

It's been in place in B.C. for 42 weeks so far, more than four times longer than the province's then-record-breaking state of emergency prompted by the 2017 wildfires.

The declaration was first made back in March to give officials extra powers to enforce orders associated with COVID-19.

The powers are outlined under B.C.'s Emergency Program Act. In this case, they include the enforcement of public health orders.

States of emergency can only be issued in B.C. for a period of two weeks at a time, though they can be called off at any time.

A decision to renew is made in consultation with the provincial health officer.

Tuesday's renewal followed an announcement of 45 deaths over the New Year's weekend. The province is currently dealing with thousands of active cases and hundreds of hospitalizations due to the novel coronavirus.