National Park Service

Southeast Coast Network (SECN)

Parks in this Network

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Air Quality Monitoring

Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area
Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area

Air Quality Monitoring Reports & Briefs

Air Quality Sampling Protocols & Procedures

NPS Air Resources Division SECN Webpage

NPS Air Atlas (specific web maps listed below)

For more information contact: Brian Gregory

Monitoring Objectives

  • Determine the weekly, seasonal, and annual status and trends in concentrations of visibility-reducing pollutants.
  • Determine the weekly, seasonal, and annual status and trends in concentrations of sulfate, nitrate, nitrate, nitric acid, sulfur dioxide, ammonium, and other selected cations from wet deposition.
  • Determine the weekly, seasonal, and annual status and trends in ozone concentration.
  • Determine the weekly, seasonal, and annual status and trends in dry deposition chemistry.

Background

The National Park Service is charged with maintaining parks and their resources unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations. Park resources affected by air quality include scenery and vistas, vegetation, water, and wildlife. Both the Clean Air Act and the NPS Organic Act protect air resources in national parks. Additionally, the Southeast Coast Inventory and Monitoring Network has identified several aspects of air quality as high priority vital signs for monitoring (described below).

Monitoring Approach

Data from various air quality monitoring programs will be acquired from web-based program archives and adopt existing protocols developed by the NPS Air Resources Division, to the greatest extent possible. Wet deposition data are archived by the National Atmospheric Deposition Program - National Trends Network (NADP/NTN), ozone data are archived by the NPS - Air Resources Division (ARD), dry deposition data are archived by the Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Air Status and Trends Network (CASTNET) and visibility data are archived by the Interagency Monitoring of Protected Visual Environments (IMPROVE) program.

Trend analyses will be performed whenever at least five years of comparable data are available. Analyses may include the entire period of record, as well as rolling five-year periods. Procedures include simple regression (ozone, visibility), multiple regression or other covariance techniques (wet and dry deposition with precipitation as a covariate), and appropriate between-year means comparisons (average N and S deposition, average ozone concentration, number of days with ozone exceeding 84 ppb, highest and lowest HI, etc.). Evaluation of visibility data will include discussion of compliance with Regional Haze Guidelines for Class I areas, i.e. improvement for the most impaired (20% worst) days and no degradation for the least impaired (20% best) days, from a baseline represented by 2000 to 2004. The SECN annually reports the above data summaries and (as appropriate) trend analyses in February each year. The report may be combined with reporting of other vital signs and its precise format will be determined at a future date.

To learn more about air quality in the SECN area, visit the Air Resource's SECN web page. Use the Highlights area to view/download PDF reports.

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References

  • National Park Service. 2004. Ozone monitoring protocol: guidance on selecting and conducting ozone monitoring. National Park Service, Air Resources Division, NPS D-1654, Lakewood, Colorado.
  • Porter, E. 2006. Dry deposition monitoring protocol: monitoring atmospheric pollutants in dry deposition. National Park Service, Air Resources Division, D-1770, Denver, Colorado.
  • Porter, E. and K. Morris. 2007. Wet deposition monitoring protocol: monitoring atmospheric pollutants in wet deposition. National Park Service, Air Resources Division, Natural Resource Report NPS/NRPC/ARD/NRTR-2007/004, Denver, Colorado.National Park Service. 2004. Ozone monitoring protocol: guidance on selecting and conducting ozone monitoring. National Park Service, Air Resources Division, NPS D-1654, Lakewood, Colorado.
  • Porter, E. 2006. Dry deposition monitoring protocol: monitoring atmospheric pollutants in dry deposition. National Park Service, Air Resources Division, D-1770, Denver, Colorado.
  • Porter, E. and K. Morris. 2007. Wet deposition monitoring protocol: monitoring atmospheric pollutants in wet deposition. National Park Service, Air Resources Division, Natural Resource Report NPS/NRPC/ARD/NRTR-2007/004, Denver, Colorado.

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Last Updated: June 15, 2017 Contact Webmaster