The Ambient Air Monitoring Branch monitors for air quality throughout Shelby County. The Branch develops, operates and maintains a regional air monitoring network of 23 monitors at seven site locations. The Branch also collects meteorological data for five parameters at its National Core Monitoring Station (NCore). These five meteorological parameters are ambient temperature, relative humidity, barometric pressure, wind speed, and wind direction. This NCore station is the only one operated in the State of Tennessee.
A data acquisition system (Air Vision) is used to store and report the data to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other agencies. These stations measure pollution levels for six criteria pollutants that the EPA identified as pollutants that affect the nation’s health and welfare. These six criteria pollutants are: carbon monoxide, lead, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, particulate matter, and sulfur dioxide.
The goals of the Shelby County Ambient Air Monitoring Branch are to evaluate compliance with federal and state air quality standards, provide real-time monitoring of air pollution episodes, develop data for trend analysis, and provide information to the public on daily air quality conditions in their area.
National Ambient Air Quality Standards
The Clean Air Act, which was last amended in 1990, requires EPA to set National Ambient Air Quality Standards (40 CFR part 50) for pollutants considered harmful to public health and the environment. View the Online NAAQs Table to learn more about the NAAQS.