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The ambient air monitoring network is a key element in making sure the air we breathe in our communities is healthy and if we are in attainment with the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). Michigan’s network has over 40 locations across the state with over 100 air monitors.
The purpose of the monitors it to measure pollutant concentrations in the outdoor (ambient) air. Ambient air is the air that the public breathes where we live, work, and play. The purpose of the network is to measure air pollutants over long periods to:
- ensure air quality standards are met,
- identify pollution trends,
- support air pollution forecasting,
- provide real-time air quality information,
- assess community exposure, and
- be used in air quality models.
This network consists of meteorological, gaseous, particle and air toxics monitors mandated by the USEPA in 40 CFR, Part 58 as part of the Michigan State Implementation Plan (SIP). The network is not intended to tell us where pollutants come from or to be used as a tool to regulate a specific company or industry type.
What air monitoring is EGLE doing near me? Check out our interactive Air Monitoring Sites web map to find out more.
Monitoring Data Summaries
Annual Air Quality Reports
Annual Air Monitoring Network Reviews (Plans)
Air Toxics Studies
Other Monitoring Reports
Learn How Air Monitors Work
Air Quality Sensors
The air sensor technology market is expanding as more companies make lower-cost portable sensors available to the public. The information outlined below provides the public with best practices for the use of low-cost, portable air sensors and may be used to assist citizens with the setup of low-cost sensors, evaluation of the data collected and the interpretation of the results.
These sensors have their limitations, however, and they cannot be used in place of regulatory-grade monitoring instruments.
- Comparison of Low-Cost Versus Federally-Certified Methods of Measuring Fine Particle Pollution (Wisconsin DNR)
The EPA provides a comprehensive toolbox of low-cost, portable sensor information.
- Air Sensor Toolbox
- Air Sensor Performance Testing Protocols, Metrics, and Target Values for PM2.5 and Ozone Webinar Archive
- How to Use Air Sensors: Air Sensor Guidebook
South Coast Air Quality Management District
The South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) established the Air Quality Sensor Performance Evaluation Center (AQ-SPEC) program to provide guidance and inform the public about the performance of low-cost air sensors.
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
The Wisconsin DNR has assembled a road map, entitled Considerations When Designing an Ambient Air Monitoring Study, for setting up an air monitoring project.
One commonly used low-cost sensor is manufactured by PurpleAir. Comparability studies found that the data associated with the PurpleAir sensors can compare more accurately with federal reference method samplers by applying a predetermined, local correction factor. There are three correction factors currently available on the PurpleAir website. The EPA correction factor offers the most applicable broad scale conversion factor currently available on the website.
Other Wisconsin DNR resources to review are:
- Quality Assurance Project Plan for PurpleAir Sensor Study (QAPP 111.0)
- 2019 PurpleAir Comparison Study
The Difference between Air Monitors and Air Sensors
Air sensors are often used by citizens to get more information on the air quality around them. These can be affordable, portable, and easier to use. The information can help the public learn more about air quality in their communities. EPA has resources about air sensors helpful to citizen scientist to help understand what sensors can be used to measure different pollutants and how to understand the results.