2011 Sept. 20: WI Grand Rapids : Woodsmoke study details
A new woodsmoke monitoring study was publicized on the RAWSEP site back on September 2. For those who haven’t heard about it, it’s a project sponsored by the Lake Michigan Air Directors Consortium (LADCO). It will be looking at OWB smoke.
Here’s the background info:
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (WDHS), the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR), the University of Wisconsin Extension, and LADCO are working together to characterize the impact of woodsmoke on air quality levels in Grand Rapids, Wisconsin. This non-regulatory initiative is intended to provide the Town Board and citizens of Grand Rapids with information on air quality in their community and the role that wood burning activities play in affecting local air quality. Key questions the study is intending to address include:
1. What are the wintertime air quality concentrations, particularly fine particulate matter (PM2.5) concentrations, in this community, and how do they vary spatially and temporally?
2. If high air quality concentrations are measured, then which sources are important contributors and what impact does woodsmoke have on the measurements?
3. If high air quality concentrations are measured, then what actions could be taken to improve air quality?
The project is being conducted with the consent and cooperation of the Grand Rapids Town Board and consists of the following activities:
• Measure PM2.5 concentrations at multiple locations in and around Grand Rapids. Initially, sampling will be conducted during the winter of 2011-2012. Based on resource availability, results of the first sampling season, and town support, a second sampling season may be conducted during the winter of 2012-2013.
• Review, analyze, and communicate air quality data from the sampling program.
• Conduct community outreach and, if appropriate, support voluntary efforts to reduce woodsmoke emissions.
Here’s a link to the RFP for a contractor to do the monitoring: http://www.ladco.org/about/general/RFP_wood_smoke_study_version_21.pdf
This is great news, but I’m a little confused about not being told about it. WI DNR, DHS, and UW Extension are all involved, and we’ve all been in touch with them and the key staff involved have all been to our homes (at least once). It’s just weird that there’s been no announcement about this study.
But, the bigger question is what will they do with the data? If the PM2.5 is high, are they just going to do the usual “public outreach” and “voluntary actions” nonsense?