3.2 2010 Wintertime Ozone in Utah’s Uinta Basin

Tuesday, 25 January 2011: 1:45 PM
6B (Washington State Convention Center)
Scott A. Jackson, EPA, Denver, CO; and R. Payton and P. Reddy

Unhealthy concentrations of ground-level ozone are typically observed in areas with large populations between the warmer months of May-September. However, during the winter of 2010, surprisingly elevated ozone values were recorded for the first time by air quality monitors in Utah's Uinta Basin. This caught many people off guard because of the time of year and the area's location in a relatively remote part of Utah. This presentation will begin with a national recap of the 2010 typical ozone season to create a context for understanding the significance of what was observed in Utah. The unique meteorological conditions and local pollutant emissions that lead to the high ozone formation will also be examined. In addition, an overview of the societal impacts of unexpected poor air quality in an area that historically enjoys clean air will be discussed. These include challenges in communicating air quality information to the public, working with a tribal nation in the area and environmental policy topics related to oil and gas development in the region.
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