How Firms Use Tools to Provide Precise Air Quality Data

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As commercial industries continue to dominate the private sector of Canada, the government has tried to step in to impose standards for the quality of emissions they produce. These emission standards are a part of the larger movement of air quality management. Motivated by both legislation, internal policy, and ethics, some firms have started to actively improve the ways in which they assess local air quality. Because air-based emissions don’t just impact the environment, they can also threaten the health and safety of those living within it. To communicate the progression that companies have made in this field, here is a breakdown of the tools air quality consultants use to provide precise air quality data.

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Emissions Inventories

Ever wonder what an emissions database would look like? That is what an emissions inventory is. These inventories are databases of pollution sources, their past emissions values, and forecasted emissions within a given geographic location. Inventories like this can be as extensive as an entire province or region. A data library this large on greenhouse gas and CAC pollutants is extremely valuable for any government body that is looking to measure and improve a region’s local air quality. The information collected from a database like an emissions inventory feeds well into other air quality impact assessment tools like dispersion modeling.

Dispersion Modeling

Contrary to what one might expect, air quality isn’t solely about measuring the amount of emissions released into the air. An area’s local air quality also depends on the amount of ambient concentrations that result from meteorology, time, topography, and the distance between receptors. These ambient concentrations help to account for the volume of emissions that have been transported and diluted by the atmosphere before they reach the receptor. Dispersion modeling incorporates the data received from the above factors to provide estimates of the ambient pollution concentrations at specific site locations.

Source Apportionment

Sometimes knowing how much pollution there isn’t as valuable as identifying its sources. Through source apportionment, air quality consultants are able to estimate the contribution of different sources of pollution to the ambient concentrations within a specific region. In doing so, they can determine how much of the emissions come from a particular plant, facility, or natural phenomenon.

These types of tools, techniques, and models are incredibly useful for air quality assessment consultants looking to accurately record an area’s air quality data, but they are not the only ones. To learn more about how one can use these tools to perform their own assessment for ECAs, Environmental Assessment, or Land Use Compatibility Assessment, visit DiGiSci today.