LOS ANGELES (CNS) – The final phase of a landmark study is under way to
determine how much air pollution in the region comes from Los Angeles
International Airport, officials said today.
Two initial phases of the study determined the best techniques and
equipment for determining air quality levels and which pollutants can be linked
to airport operations.
The study was started in 1999, but was suspended for one year because of
the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
The study, which is being conducted by Tetra Tech Inc. of Pasadena,
includes fixed monitoring stations, community satellite sites and saturation
sampling sites in communities near LAX, including El Segundo, Lennox, Playa del
Rey and Westchester.
Los Angeles World Airports “is committed to moving the LAX Air Quality
and Source Apportionment Study forward, and with the core air monitoring
program currently under way, the study and final report is expected to be
completed early 2013,’ LAWA Deputy Executive Director Michael Feldman said.
Fixed monitor stations will take regular measurements of particulate
matter, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, black carbon,
volatile organic compounds and ultra-fine particles.
The study will monitor air quality over two seasons, winter and summer
of this year, to account for changes in meteorology, airport operations and the
associated effects on pollutant transport and dispersion. Analysis of the
monitoring and modeling results will occur later this year, with the report
expected to be completed by the spring of 2013.
Coalition for Clean Air President Joseph Lyou said his organization
supports the study, with one caveat.
“Within the next year, we’ll have more air quality data from LAX than
has been collected from any other airport in the world,” he said.
However, Lyou said, LAWA has not identified how it will measure or
analyze pollution attributable to cars and trucks just outside the airport.
“Of all the traffic on the streets and freeways outside of LAX
property, some portion can and should be attributed to LAX,’ Lyou said.
“Unfortunately, they haven’t committed to saying what they’ll own up to when
looking at car and truck impacts on air quality in and around the airport. It
may have the most important and direct impact upon the surrounding community in
terms of air quality.’
Coalition for Clean Air Campaign Director Martin Schlageter said the
pollutants in jet fuel, including formaldehyde, tourmaline and benzene,
contribute to global warming and are also directly damaging to human health.
“Unlike passenger cars, we don’t have a lot of alternatives to jet
fuel,’ Schlageter said.
A technical working group consisting of community organizations, the
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, California Air Resources Board, South
Coast Air Quality Management District, California Office of Environmental
Health Hazard Assessment and Federal Aviation Administration, will continue to
contribute input as the study moves forward.
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