Monitoring Air Quality in L.A. Harbor
Since 2005, the Port of Los Angeles has monitored air quality within its operational region of influence in Los Angeles Harbor. This air quality monitoring program supports the Port’s commitment to improve air quality within the San Pedro Bay Ports area under the Clean Air Action Plan (CAAP), by helping to better manage and provide feedback on the Port’s air quality improvement efforts.
The monitoring program includes a network of four air monitoring stations that measure a comprehensive set of air pollutants within the region of influence. The air quality monitoring stations measure ambient air pollution levels in the vicinity of the Port of Los Angeles. The program includes a number of real-time air quality measurements: ozone, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide, two sizes of particulate matter (PM10 or coarse particles, and PM2.5 or fine particles), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and ultrafine particles. In addition, 24-hour integrated samples of particulates are collected on filters every third day for detailed chemical analyses, which can not be done with real-time monitors.
As part of the program, meteorological monitoring stations operate adjacent to each air monitoring station, to help interpret the air quality data and for use in other Port programs. Each meteorological monitoring station collects wind speed, wind direction, and temperature data; in addition, one station also collects solar radiation, relative humidity, and barometric pressure data.
Selection of the locations for the two community stations was dependent on a special “validation study” to ensure that the monitoring sites were representative of ambient conditions within the community.
In 2008, the Port began collecting and transmitting real-time data for ozone, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide, two sizes of particulate matter (PM10 or coarse particles, and PM2.5 or fine particles), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and ultrafine particles to a publicly-accessible, real-time air monitoring website. To view real-time data, visit caap.airsis.com.
Additionally, sampling data are used to perform health risk assessments, which are ways of estimating lifetime cancer risk if one were exposed at the observed sampling level throughout a 70-year lifetime. To learn more about health risk assessments, click here to visit California's Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment.
All real-time data are available for public review on the CAAP website, which also displays data collected by two stations operated on behalf of the Port of Long Beach, which provides a more comprehensive picture of air quality within the San Pedro Bay Ports area.
The following charts provide summaries of the particulate data measured at the four community air monitoring stations within the Port of Los Angeles network. Although the data are collected as integrated samples on EPA's designated schedule (every third day), the tables depict monthly averages and the graphs depict annual averages. More detailed graphs showing monthly variations are archived, by year, below. These averages reduce the day-to-day variability in the data, making it easier to determine the longer-term data trends. As evident in the graphs and tables, the level of particulates in the atmosphere varies considerably. These variations occur for a number of reasons, including the time of year and changes in the weather and Port operations.
|Cumulative* Data By Pollutant
|Historical Monthly Averages By Pollutant|
|Elemental Carbon (EC)||Graph||Table||2005||2006||2007||2008||2009|
|*Cumulative data tables show comparisons to State and Federal standards dating back to 2005. Learn more about air quality standards by visiting the California Air Resources Board and Environmental Protection Agency websites.|