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Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park Air Quality Monitoring

Portable Ozone Analyzer
Air Atlas
Air Atlas is a GIS database of air quality estimates for 270 parks that are part of the NPS Inventory and Monitoring Program. These estimates can be used when on-site monitoring data is not available.
Air Atlas

Atmospheric Deposition Monitoring
Deposition of pollutants, including sulfur and nitrogen, is not measured in Black Canyon of the Gunnison NP. However, the NPS Air Resources Division has estimated deposition of sulfur and nitrogen in Black Canyon of the Gunnison NP, using interpolation techniques on data from deposition monitors throughout the Southwest (see AirAtlas website). Although estimates of deposition are relatively low, they are significantly elevated above natural conditions. In many areas of the Southwest, sulfur deposition is decreasing somewhat while nitrogen deposition is increasing.

Night Skies
Optical monitoring to collect baseline data on night sky brightness has been completed at Black Canyon of the Gunnison NP. The optical measurement produces, not only a measure of night sky brightness and identification of light pollution sources, but also produces a measure of the effect of the atmosphere on light scattering caused by fine particulates and other air pollutants, and moisture.

Ozone Monitoring
A portable ozone monitor has been installed in Black Canyon of the Gunnison NP (June 2003). Monitoring throughout the region indicates that ozone concentrations and cumulative annual ozone doses fall within a range that may produce visible effects or growth effects on sensitive plant species. In addition, estimates of ozone for the park are available at the NPS AirAtlas website.

Visibility Monitoring
Visibility was monitored in Black Canyon of the Gunnison NP with an automatic 35mm camera from 1985-1993. At present, data from IMPROVE monitors located throughout the region (e.g., Mesa Verde NP, Canyonlands NP, White River National Forest) are used to characterize conditions at the park.

updated on 01/18/2006  I   http://www.nature.nps.gov/air/permits/aris/BLCA/monitoring.cfm   I  Email: Webmaster