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Air Pollution: EPA's Actions to Resolve Concerns with the Fine Particulate Monitoring Program

RCED-99-215 Published: Aug 12, 1999. Publicly Released: Aug 27, 1999.
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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the National Academy of Sciences March 1998 report on the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) plans to monitor particulate matter smaller than 2.5 microns (PM2.5), focusing on: (1) EPA's actions in response to the Academy's concerns with the planned PM2.5 monitoring program; and (2) the challenges that state and local agencies face in establishing and operating the PM2.5 monitoring program, as well as EPA's response to these challenges.


Recommendations for Executive Action

Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Environmental Protection Agency The Administrator, EPA, should ensure that all remaining monitors planned for the PM2.5 network undergo and successfully pass full laboratory and full field testing and evaluation under actual operating conditions to ensure that the monitors meet data quality objectives before large-scale deployment of these monitors is authorized.
Closed – Implemented
EPA agrees with the recommendation and has acted to implement it. According to EPA documents, EPA has deployed over 300 chemical speciation monitors throughout the country.

Full Report

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Air pollution controlEnvironmental monitoringEnvironmental researchHazardous substancesOperational testingState-administered programsEnvironmental protectionParticulate matterField testingData quality