SACRAMENTO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has awarded the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District (SMAQMD) a $360,000 grant to study toxic pollutants from wood smoke in Sacramento.
Residential wood smoke is Sacramento’s main source of wintertime air pollution and it is suspected to be the main source of some hazardous air pollutants (HAPs), including acetaldehyde, acrolein, acetonitrile, and naphthalene. This study, to be conducted during one winter season beginning in November 2016, will provide a better understanding of air toxics from wood smoke and wood burning behavior in select environmental justice communities based on federal environmental justice data.
“We are committed to learning more about how air toxics are impacted by wood smoke emissions in our neighborhoods,” said Steve Hansen, SMAQMD board chair. “This study will help the air district understand exposure to wood smoke air toxics in disadvantaged communities, as well as non-disadvantaged communities,” added Hansen.
The study will include enhanced air monitoring of air toxics and particulate matter at the neighborhood level. It will use traditional regulatory air monitors with the addition of low cost monitors to be operated by community members in neighborhoods as yet to be determined.
This project will assist the District in expanding its outreach efforts, including its financial incentive programs to replace dirty wood burning devices and increase awareness of the mandatory wood burning curtailment program, Check Before You Burn.
“I congratulate the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District for identifying the need to further protect public health,” said Congresswoman Doris Matsui (CA – District 6). “We must do everything in our power to ensure that future generations of Sacramentans have clean air to breathe and this grant award helps us do so.”
The entire project will focus on four questions:
1. What are the concentrations of hazardous air pollutants in various Sacramento communities?
2. To what degree does wood smoke contribute to HAPs in these communities?
3. Are disadvantaged communities disproportionately impacted by wood smoke HAPs?
4. Are there new outreach efforts that can be done by SMAQMD to reduce HAPs?