For more information about National Park Service air resources, please visit http://www.nature.nps.gov/air/.
Air Quality at Lassen Volcanic National Park
What’s in the Air?
Most people who visit national parks expect clean air and clear views. However, Lassen Volcanic National Park (NP), California, well known for volcanic landforms and geologic resources, lies downwind of the populated Sacramento Valley and areas of agriculture and manufacturing. Pollutants emitted from these sources can harm the park’s natural and scenic resources such as vegetation, surface waters, and visibility.
How is air pollution affecting Lassen Volcanic National Park?
- Sulfur is naturally emitted from volcanic formations in the park and levels of nitrogen and sulfur deposition from human-caused sources are relatively low. However, high elevation ecosystems at the park are sensitive to the harmful effects of deposition. more »
- Toxic airborne contaminants including mercury deposit in park ecosystems at high levels, this is a potential wildlife and human health concern. more »
- Ground-level ozone concentrations sometimes reach levels harmful to plants, injuring plant tissues. more »
- Fine particles of air pollution sometimes cause haze in the park, affecting how well and how far visitors can see vistas and landmarks. more »
What is the National Park Service doing about air pollution at the park?
- Monitoring nitrogen, sulfur, ozone, fine particles, and haze to assess status and trends. more »
- Evaluating the impacts of air pollution on park ecosystems. more »
- Working with federal, state, and local agencies, industry, and public interest groups to develop strategies to reduce air pollution and protect and restore park resources. The NPS also reviews plans for development that may increase air pollution in national parks. more »
- Utilizing more fuel efficient vehicles, improving energy conservation measures in park facilities to reduce in-park air pollutant emissions, and increasing awareness among park staff, visitors, and the local community through the park’s Green Team and Green Junior Rangers Program. Learn more about the steps Lassen Volcanic NP is taking as part of the Climate Friendly Parks program.
Pollutants including nitrogen, sulfur, mercury, ozone, and fine particles affect resources such as lakes, soils, and scenic vistas. Find out how on our Lassen Volcanic NP Air Pollution Impacts web page.
Studies and monitoring help the NPS understand the environmental impacts of air pollution. Access air quality data and see what is happening with Studies and Monitoring at Lassen Volcanic NP.
Last Updated: December 20, 2011