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Air Quality Investigation: Air Monitoring

In 2002, ATSDR began an air quality investigation to identify those chemicals present in outdoor air and at what concentrations they are present. The collected air data will help determine the presence of any risk to human health.

One type of data ATSDR is collecting is from real-time air monitoring. Air monitoring data differ from air modeling data. Air monitors measure the actual levels of chemicals in the air, whereas modeling uses a mathematical formula to estimate the level of chemicals in air.

Ohio EPA has placed five high-volume Total Suspended Particulate (TSP) monitors in the community. TSP monitors collect "total dust" (all sizes) for 24-hour periods. Ohio EPA staff gather the removable filters, cut them into strips and ship them to the Ohio EPA lab, where the samples are analyzed. The level of metals that  the Ohio EPA lab reports by month is a "composite sample" or a monthly average.

The air data collection conforms to the ATSDR Quality Assurance Project Plan (QAPP). This means the data are valid and reliable. The USEPA monitors—and every 3 months audits—the operation of the TSP to ensure the monitoring equipment is operating properly and that it meets the QAPP standards.

Air Monitoring Photos

Site Location Map

In 2007, ATSDR extended the air investigation to include three new monitoring sites. Ohio EPA had installed the two original rural monitors in Warren Township, Washington County, Ohio (Air Monitors 1 & 2). The new monitors are in Marietta, Ohio and Boaz and Vienna, West Virginia (Air Monitors 3, 4, and 5). ATSDR worked closely with the Ohio EPA and the WVDEP to ensure that the monitors meet site and security requirements.

Following the finalization of all data, the air investigation results will be published in a health consultation. Until then, quarterly results from air sampling in the Mid-Ohio Valley will be published in newsletters that can be accessed on the ATSDR Web site. The links below provide access to the collected quarterly air data:

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