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New Program to Share Air Quality Data with Calcasieu Parish Community
Release Date: 1/24/2001
Contact Information: For more information contact the Office of External Affairs at (214) 665-2200.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in partnership with the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (LDEQ) and the Lake Area Industry Alliance (LAIA), has established an enhanced air quality sampling network and will ensure that information on air quality is made available to the public.
This network demonstrates EPA, LDEQ and LAIA's responsiveness to the local community's concerns and partnership with community groups.
"The EPA is committed to ensuring that all citizens have the information needed to make health decisions that protect their children and families. By sharing data with the community, we build confidence that our public health requirements for industry are working. This network serves as a model for communities facing similar challenges," said EPA Deputy Regional Administrator Jerry Clifford.
All data will be made available to the public on a web site to be established by the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality.
Dale Givens, Secretary of the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality, said, "As explained at the press conference held by DEQ, DHH, and EPA on September 11, 2000, in Lake Charles; DEQ believes that the enhanced monitoring program is an important step in determining environmental air quality in the greater Lake Charles area. Furthermore, by making the data readily available through DEQ's enhanced website, the data can be rapidly reviewed by all interested parties."
The samples will be tested for over 125 different contaminants such as dioxin, solvents, degreasers, paints, thinners and fuels that evaporate into the air easily. Four sampling devices are located in Calcasieu: one each in Vinton and Westlake, and two in Lake Charles. A fifth sampling location in Mossville will be added soon.
Samples will be gathered by the LAIA through an independent contractor. Scientists from EPA and LDEQ will review the data, provide advice, and evaluate the monitoring network periodically.
LAIA Executive Director Larry DeRoussel said, "The LAIA is pleased to participate in this voluntary enhanced air quality monitoring program. It is in keeping with industry's commitment to environmental stewardship and to enhancing community environmental awareness."