HARRISBURG, Pa., Aug. 29, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Department of Environmental Protection today released results of a short-term air sampling effort conducted near the Barto Compressor Station in Penn Township, Lycoming County. Sample analyses found no emission levels of nitrogen dioxide that would pose a health concern.
"DEP is committed to understanding the impacts of the natural gas industry on public health and the environment," Acting DEP Secretary Chris Abruzzo said. "We will continue to conduct air sampling studies to ensure the quality of Pennsylvania's air and the protection of its citizens while this clean, domestic fuel source is being developed, processed and used."
Due to concerns raised by the Clean Air Council (CAC), the department conducted an air sampling effort to measure nitrogen dioxide levels near the compressor station during the week of July 22, 2013.
DEP used a mobile laboratory and located its equipment within one half mile downwind of the station at two different locations. During the sampling periods, the compressor station was operating at normal capacity and the operator was not contacted about the sampling effort until after its completion.
Results of sampling performed over a four-day period demonstrated that concentrations of nitrogen dioxide were minimal, and well below national ambient air quality standards.
The department operates permanent nitrogen dioxide monitors downwind of other compressor stations in Pennsylvania, and those monitors are also measuring levels of this pollutant that are well below the national ambient air quality standard.
DEP has also conducted three short-term ambient air quality monitoring studies in drilling regions of the state, all of which detected no levels of any pollutant that would violate federal ambient air quality standards or pose a health concern.
The department is currently conducting a long-term study in Washington County. This effort will collect data for various pollutants, including ground-level ozone, particulate matter, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, hydrogen sulfide, methane and volatile organic compounds. The study will be completed by the end of the year.
To view DEP's and CAC's reports, visit www.dep.state.pa.us and click "Air."
Media contact: Lisa Kasianowitz, 717-787-1323
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection