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Fundamentals of air

Pollution Air Quality

Mashood Ahmed

?Air Quality Management

What is AQM, Why is Needed

Designing and implementing methods and
technologies for tracking changes in pollutant
emissions, pollutant concentrations, and human
health and welfare outcomes to document and
ultimately improve the effectiveness of air
pollution mitigation activities. As indicated in
Figure 1-3, the aforementioned contributions of
science and technology are made through
monitoring, analysis, research, and development.

What is air quality management?

Air quality management (AQM) refers to all the activities a regulatory
authority undertakes to make sure that the air we breathe is safe, both
outdoors and indoors.
The AQM process is the system of understanding the sources that
contribute to pollution in the air and the health and environmental effects
of the pollutants, and then taking steps to reduce or control the sources to
reach or maintain agreed upon target pollution levels in the air.
These levels may vary from country to country, but the overall system for
planning, assessing, characterizing, mitigating, and implementing control
strategies is similar.
While AQM is generally handled at the national government level, regional
and local governments, industry, and the public all have important roles to
play in this system.
Each air quality management activity is related to the others. It is also
important to recognize that the entire AQM process is dynamic - there is a
continuous review and assessment of standards and strategies based on
their effectiveness and new research on health and environmental effects.

Public Involvement

Air Quality Goal


Human &



Regulation &

Air Quality

Compliance &

Integrated Air Quality Management

Institutional mechanism: Local, regional, national, global
Assessment of air quality
Emission inventory
Source apportionment
Air pollution Exposure and damage
Evaluation of control strategies.
Development of AQM integrated strategy
action plan
Strong implementation

Goals of the Clean Air Act

Mitigate potentially harmful ambient concentrations of six

criteria pollutants: carbon monoxide (CO), nitrogen dioxide,
sulfur dioxide, ozone , particulate matter (PM), and lead.

Limit sources of exposure to hazardous air pollutants - HAPs.

Protect and improve visibility in wilderness areas and national


Reduce emissions of substances that cause acid deposition,

specifically sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides.

Curb use of chemicals that have the potential to deplete the

stratospheric ozone layer.

Criteria Pollutants
U.S. EPA uses six "criteria pollutants" as indicators of air quality, and has established for
each of them a National Ambient Air Quality Standards:
Particulate matter
Ground-level ozone
Nitrogen dioxide
Carbon monoxide
Sulfur dioxide
When an area does not meet the air quality standard for one of the criteria pollutants, it
may be defined as non-attainment (especially for ozone, carbon monoxide, and some
particulate matter).
Non-attainment classifications may be used to specify what air pollution reduction
measures an area must adopt, and when the area must reach attainment.

Control Strategies
A control strategy is a set of discrete and specific
measures identified and implemented to achieve
reductions in air pollution. These measures may
vary by source type, such as stationary or
mobile, as well as by the pollutant that is being
targeted. The purpose of these measures is to
achieve the air quality standard or goal. Costs
and benefits are assessed in the development of
the control strategy.

Control strategy development - How to determine the best approach to provide the
emission reductions necessary to achieve the air quality goal.
Three primary considerations in designing an effective control strategy are:
(1) Environmental:

factors such as equipment locations, ambient air quality

conditions, adequate utilities (i.e., water for scrubbers), legal requirements, noise
levels, and the contribution of the control system as a pollutant;
(2) Engineering:

factors such as contaminant characteristics

(abrasiveness, toxicity, etc.), gas stream characteristics, and performance

characteristics of the control system; and
(3) Economic:

factors such as capital cost, operating costs, equipment

maintenance, and the lifetime of the equipment.

Pollution prevention should also be considered (eliminating pollution emissions at
the source, substituting toxic raw materials, alternative processes, )

Multi Cyclone Mechanical collector

NOx Control in Boiler

SO2 Scrubber

Baghouse Filter

Electrostatic Precipitator (ESP)

Principles of Control Strategies

Controls should cover stationary, mobile, and area sources.
Utilize reasonably available control technology. Provide Examples.
For mobile sources, examples include tighter emission controls for vehicles and low-sulfur
fuel standards.
For major stationary sources apply permits for emission limits (new vs existing(.
The basic types of emission control technology are mechanical collectors, wet scrubbers,
bag houses, electrostatic precipitators, combustion systems (thermal oxidizers),
condensers, absorbers, adsorbers, and biological degradation.
Selection should be based environmental, engineering, and economic considerations.
First steps in air quality management process - focus on obvious sources of air pollution
and the quickest means of control. More sophisticated innovative and comprehensive
strategies (emissions trading, banking, and emissions caps) can be incorporated as a
further refinement as the strategy continues. Local and regional control measures and are
both necessary for a successful strategy.
Successful control strategies are usually adopted into a regulatory program with
implementation deadlines and mechanisms for enforcement.
The goal for all control strategies is to achieve real and measurable emission reductions.

Sources of emission, represented in various emission inventories for industrial,

commercial, or domestic sources and the transportation system, as well as land- use
related sources (biogenic emissions of VOCs, particulate matter from soils and
street surfaces).
Monitoring system observing ambient air quality and historical trends with
emphasis on the peak values that may exceed regulatory standards.
Dispersion and transformation processes, driven by emissions, meteorology, and
local topography, that translate emissions into the ambient concentrations,
represented by air quality simulation models.
Impact assessment, which translates the ambient concentrations into costs in a
general sense (e.g., in terms of public health and environmental damage.(
Control strategies which basically attempt to limit emissions, relocate them, or
mitigate impacts where that is possible, with fuel quality constraints, end of pipe
technologies, or temporary traffic restrictions being of the more noticeable
instruments (Fedra and Haurie, 1999).
Communication tasks including various levels of regular reports, event driven
warnings such as smog alarms, as well as the continuous information of the public
on ambient air quality.

There Are Four Main Steps In

Developing A Control Strategy

(1) Determine priority pollutants - based on health effects and the severity of
the air quality problem.
(2) Identify control measures. For specific source categories, choose the
appropriate controls (Information source: U.S. EPA's Clean Air Technology
(3) Incorporate the control measures into a plan - written plan with
implementation dates to formalize the strategy. It is important to adopt a
regulatory program and include it in the plan so that control measures will
be enforceable.
(4) Involve the public. As with the other management activities related to the
AQM process, it is critical to contact the regulated community and other
affected parties, as the public should be consulted as part of the strategy
development process. This early consultation reduces later challenges and
streamlines implementation.

Air Quality Modeling

Air Quality modeling is the mathematical prediction of ambient concentrations
of air pollution, based on measured inputs (many of the models are available for
direct download at the U.S. EPA Support Center for Regulatory Air Models (SCRAM).

Air quality modeling is the necessary substitute/supplement for air quality monitoring.
Models can be used to predict the impacts from a potential emitter. Models can be
applied for the simulation of ambient pollution concentrations under different policy
options. Finally, models can be used to determine the relative contributions from
different sources as a tool for tracking trends, monitoring compliance, and making
policy decisions.
Modeling for air quality management purposes typically falls into two broad categories:
dispersion modeling and receptor-based modeling (

How do I do air quality modeling?

The choice of model depends on a combination of the available data and the needs of the
researcher (see U.S. EPA's detailed recommendations).

Human & Environmental Assessment

Determining how various pollutants may impacts human health and the environment
requires input from a range of disciplines, such as toxicology, public health, health
sciences and epidemiology.
Effects directly on human health can include increases in the risk of death
(mortality) or increases in adverse health effect (morbidity). Adverse health effects:
acute effects (headaches or eye irritation), and chronic effects (emphysema or
Environmental effects, including those causing indirect damages to humans
(aesthetic damages, problems of odor, noise, and poor visibility, productivity of
farmland, forests, and commercial fisheries(. Environmental effects also encompass
damages associated with preserving, protecting, and improving the quality of
ecological resources.
Another aspect of human and environmental assessment is risk assessment. Risk
assessment is the scientific process of evaluating adverse effects and is usually
geographically limited, though the defined geography can vary tremendously, for
example local, regional and global.

Legislation, Regulation & Implementation

Legistlation - Synonymous with law or statute, legislation is established by a
governing authority and in general can be enforced by the courts. Air quality
legislation generally contains broad program goals and objectives as well as roles

Compliance & Enforcement

Compliance involves actions and programs designed to ensure the environmental
laws of the land are followed. Enforcement is focused on those situations when the
law is not followed to ensure a rapid return to compliance with these laws.

Compliance and enforcement are very complex issues, involving different aspects of a country's
legal and policy framework. As such, there is no clear cut method for establishing a program.
Compliance Assistance: National and local agencies have developed numerous industry specific
documents available to assist in the development of a compliance program.
Compliance Inspections are a key element of a compliance program.
Civil Enforcement encompasses the investigations and cases brought to address the most significant
Criminal Enforcement is designed to identify, apprehend, and assist prosecutors in successfully
convicting those who are responsible for the most significant and egregious violations of environmental
law that pose substantial risks to human health and the environment.
As with other activities related to the AQM process, it is critical to contact the public, the regulated
community and other affected parties.

EPA reaches agreement with Goldschmidt Chemical

CHICAGO (Feb. 8, 2007)
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 has reached an
agreement with Goldschmidt Chemical Corp. on alleged clean-air
The agreement, which includes a $600,000 environmental project and a
$25,000 penalty, resolves EPA allegations that Goldschmidt violated its
state operating permit and state air pollution regulations by emitting too
much organic material from tanks and reactors at the plant.
For its environmental project, Goldschmidt will remove and properly
dispose of material in its sludge lagoon and then permanently close the
Companies that violate the Clean Air Act may voluntarily propose
environmental projects as part of their settlements. EPA may reduce
monetary penalties if it believes a project will cut pollution significantly and
goes beyond what is required by EPA regulations

Asbestos Contractor Charged in Connection with Asbestos Waste

Abandoned in Camden, New Jersey
Release date: 02/13/2007
PHILADELPHIA -- United States Attorney today announced the charging of
Randall G. Cone with violating the Clean Air Act in connection with the
transportation of asbestos waste in 2000 and the discovery that the asbestos
waste had been abandoned in a trailer in Camden, New Jersey.
According to the information, Cone was hired in the spring of 2000 to remove
and dispose of asbestos-containing material from a building in Philadelphia
that was being converted into a charter school. Cone hired an individual to
transport the removed asbestos material for disposal, but asbestoscontaining material was eventually abandoned in a semi-trailer at a parking
lot in Camden. Cone did not complete the required asbestos waste shipment
record at the time of transport. A company redeveloping the Ferry Avenue
property discovered the trailer and its contents in 2005,
and paid approximately $18,000 to dispose of the asbestos waste and trailer.
If convicted, Cone faces a maximum sentence of two years imprisonment, a
fine of $250,000, two years supervised release, and a special assessment of

Federal Clean Air Act case settled with Redwood City auto dealer; fourth
case resolved for Freon violation with Bay Area car repair shops
Release date 01/09/2007
SAN FRANCISCO - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has reached an
agreement with a Bay Area Ford dealership for alleged Freon violations of the Federal
Clean Air Act.
Towne Ford, failed to comply with the requirements of the Clean Air Acts regulations that
requires that air conditioning mechanics pass an EPA-certified training and testing course.
The EPA training is required regardless of any other training or certification mechanics may
have. The facility must also maintain adequate records to demonstrate EPA certification of
their mechanics and refrigerant recovery and recycling equipment.
The training regulations help ensure the proper handling of ozone-depleting and global
warming substances that go into a cars air conditioner, thereby minimizing the release of
these chemicals into the atmosphere. The adverse effects of ultra-violet radiation from a
thinning ozone layer include skin cancers, cataracts and immune system suppression.
In September, South City Motors of South San Francisco agreed to pay a $20,000 penalty
and Hayward Ford of Hayward agreed to pay a $10,000 penalty; and in August Broadway
Motors of Oakland agreed to pay a $5,416 penalty to settle Freon cases with the EPA.

Ambient Air Monitoring and

Emissions Measurement

Ambient Monitoring is the systematic, long-term

assessment of pollutant levels by measuring the
quantity and types of certain pollutants in the
surrounding, outdoor air.
Emissions Measurement is the process of monitoring
particulate and gaseous emissions from a specific

Ambient Air Monitoring and

Emissions Measurement
Air quality monitoring is carried out to:

assess the extent of pollution,

ensure compliance with national legislation,

evaluate control options, and,

provide data for air quality modeling.

There are a number of different methods to measure any given pollutant,

varying in complexity, reliability, and detail of data. These range from:

simple passive sampling techniques, to,

highly sophisticated remote sensing devices.

A monitoring strategy should carefully examine the options to determine

which methodology is most appropriate, taking into account initial
investment costs, operating costs, reliability of systems, and ease of

Ambient Air Monitoring and

Emissions Measurement
The locations for monitoring stations depend on the purpose of the
Most monitoring networks are designed with human health objectives
in mind, and monitoring stations are therefore established in
population centers.
Many governments (local, regional or national) give specific guidelines
on where to monitor within these areas - next to busy roads, in city
center locations, or at a location of particular concern (e.g., a school,
Background monitoring stations are also established, to act as a
"control" when determining source apportionment.

Emission Measurements

Emissions Inventory
An emissions inventory is a database that lists, by source, the amount of air
pollutants emitted into the atmosphere of a community during a given time period.

Emissions Inventory
Emission inventories are used to help determine significant sources of air pollutants,
establish emission trends over time, target regulatory actions, and estimate air quality
through computer dispersion modeling. An emission inventory includes estimates of
the emissions from various pollution sources in a specific geographical area.
Methods for calculating the emissions inventories may include: continuous monitoring
to measure actual emissions; extrapolating the results from short-term source
emissions tests; and using published emission factors (US AP-42).
Emission factors may be used to estimate emissions. In most cases, these factors are
simply averages of all available data of acceptable quality, and are generally assumed
to be representative of long-term averages for all facilities in the source category.
However, variations in the conditions at a given facility, such as the raw materials used,
temperature of combustion, and emission controls, can significantly effect the
emissions at an individual location.
Whenever possible, the development of local emission factors is highly desirable.

Source Categories

In many industrialized cities across the globe, pollution from stationary industrial sources is a major
component of urban air quality management. U.S. EPA has categorized sources of hazardous air
pollutants (HAPs). U.S. Clean Air Act define two types of stationary sources : major or area. (Large or
Mobile sources (e.g., cars, trucks, trains, airplanes) pollute the air through combustion and fuel
evaporation. These emissions contribute greatly to air pollution and are the primary cause of air pollution in
many urban areas.
U.S. EPA and European EEA provides basic information on mobile sources, including definitions of on-road
vehicles and non-road vehicles, and information on the main pollutants (carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons,
nitrogen oxides, and particulate matter), and control / solutions to the problem.
Air pollution from agricultural sources is derived from emissions of nitrogen and gaseous sulfur compounds
from animal and crop agriculture as well as activities such as prescribed burning.
Indoor Air
Most homes have more than one source that contributes to indoor air pollution. Indoor pollution sources
that release gases or particles into the air are the primary cause of indoor air quality problems in homes.
These include combustion sources such as oil, gas, kerosene, coal, wood, and tobacco products; building
materials and furnishings as diverse as deteriorated, asbestos-containing insulation, wet or damp carpet,
and cabinetry or furniture made of certain pressed wood products; products for household cleaning and
maintenance, personal care, or hobbies; central heating and cooling systems and humidification devices;
and outdoor sources such as radon, pesticides, and outdoor air pollution.

Hazardous Air Pollutants

Toxic air pollutants, also known as hazardous air pollutants (HAPs), are those pollutants
that are known or suspected to cause cancer or other serious health effects (birth
defects, or adverse environmental effects(.
The U.S. EPA is working with state, local, and tribal governments to reduce air toxics
releases of 188 pollutants to the environment. Examples of toxic air pollutants include
benzene (gasoline); perchlorethlyene (dry cleaning facilities); and methylene chloride,
(solvent and paint stripper); dioxins, asbestos, toluene, and metals such as cadmium,
mercury, chromium, and lead compounds.
Until the past few decades, air pollution was mostly considered on the local, urban level.
It is now widely recognized that air pollution is not only a regional and national issue,
but also international as air pollutants can travel great distances (see the United
Nations Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution and the Cooperative Program for Monitoring and Evaluation of the Long-Range Transmission of
Air Pollutants in Europe (EMEP)
Another major air quality pollution concern involves global warming or greenhouse gases

Environmental Conventions and 12 5

Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution and its
8 protocols
Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a
Transboundary Context and its protocol
Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary
Watercourses and International Lakes and its protocol
Convention on the Transboundary Effects of Industrial
Accidents and its protocol
Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in
Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental
Matters and its protocol


Combats damage from air pollution
Sets principles of cooperation for air pollution
Creates institutional framework for collaborative
research and policy
Has prompted development of environmental
law and stability
Adopted in 1979; Entered into force in 1983

8 Protocols
1999 Multi-effect

(20 Parties)

1998 Heavy Metals

1998 POPs

(28 Parties)

(26 Parties)

1994 Sulphur

(27 Parties)

1991 VOC

(21 Parties)

1988 NOx

(31 Parties)

1985 Sulphur

(22 Parties)

1984 EMEP Protocol

(41 Parties)

Convention on Environmental Impact

Assessment in a Transboundary
Requires Parties:
Notify and consult each other on projects
likely to have significant adverse
transboundary environmental impact
Assess environmental impact at early
Provide public opportunity to participate
Adopted in 1991 (Espoo, Finland),
Entered into force 1997, 41 Parties

Environmental Agreements :BENEFITS

Set legal basis for action

Reduce environmental damage & prompt sustainable
Improve environmental legislation and management
Stimulate transboundary environmental cooperation
Promote cross-sectoral cooperation
Prompt capacity-building and awareness-raising
Prevent and solve conflicts
Improve access to information and justice by the public