Port of LB's Air Monitors Show Fire-Related Particulates At Very High Levels In LB
(Oct. 22, 2007) -- Wind-whipped fires encircling the L.A. basin have sent levels of health impacting particulates (PM10 = 10 microns and smaller) to very high levels, significantly exceeding state and federal standards (for 24 hour exposure) as measured by the Port of LB's monitoring station.
The Port of LB's air monitors, established as part of the Port's "Green Port" initiative to track port-related air quality, has picked up and is registering significantly elevated PM10 (and PM2.5) levels from the fires.
Below is a screen shot from the Port of LB website (www.polb.com) [updated shortly after noon].
Monitor site, south of Anaheim St., west of Santa Fe, Oct 22 chart/data source: www.polb.com.
To access PoLB's current full air monitoring data directly, click here AND THEN enter "PM10" and "inner harbor" and click "submit."
The Port's monitoring equipment first began detecting the particulate increase from the fires on Sunday (Oct. 21). Below is a screen shot captured by LBReport.com showing Sunday's midday rise in particulates measured in the Port of LB as fires broke out northward in Malibu and Canyon Country and southward in OC.
Oct 21 chart/data source: www.polb.com.
In effect, the Port of LB's website is providing the public with on-demand data that SCAQMD has for years refused to provide. SCAQMD retains its arguably antiquated practice of issuing "forecasts" that "predict" unhealtful levels in some areas; for some areas, the agency offers "smoothed" (or averaged) PM10 data, coupled with the caveat that this doesn't reflect smoke and fire events [making the AQMD smoothed "data" useless at times like these.]
SCAQMD spokespersons have in the past defended the agency's system to LBReport.com on grounds state and federal "standards" are based on 24-hour exposure.
[Comment: LBReport.com considers it newsworthy that the Port of LB is effectively providing a public service that the region's taxpayer-funded "clean air" agency has bureaucratically refused to provide. LBReport.com first criticized AQMD's "averaged" particulate data in 2003 (after major fires) and has previously urged that agency to provide hourly data....to no avail. In contrast, the Port of LB has shown it can be done...by just doing it.]
LBReport.com will continue to post information about fire-related particulate levels in LB on our front page -- www.lbreport.com.
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