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Blowin' in the Wind, Issue #076 Air Quality Scientist Career - May 1, 2010
April 28, 2010
What does an Air Quality Scientist do?
The premier service offered by this air quality scientist is atmospheric dispersion modeling. He, along with the air quality group, scrutinizes the industrial emission data, carefully selects the appropriate air quality modeling software and assesses the environmental impacts of the current and/or proposed operation. Regulatory air dispersion modelling has these experts staying on top of the changing legislation and using the most recent modelling tools approved by the relevant agencies.
Why industrial plants need air quality and government applications.The important thing is that these regulatory bodies issue licenses that expire and require that equipment or operational changes on site are preceded by updated licensing, approvals or registrations. And near new plants, clean air must stay clean. At Calvin Consulting Group Ltd., for instance, the air quality modeling expertise allows air quality scientist to formulate a very significant specialized component of each application. As a result the company has chosen to complete entire applications, or to simply supply dispersion modeling results, all at the discretion of the client.
Quality of data needs to be assured by a good air quality scientist. Legislation normally requires quality assurance plans for various data monitoring systems on or near industrial sites. One location of the monitoring occurs at emissions source, where an item such as a continuous emissions monitoring system, aka CEMS, records flow-velocities, temperatures and pollutant concentrations in the effluent streams. Manual stack testing can serve the same purpose. Another location is in the atmosphere surrounding the plant, in which continuous, passive or static monitors can be employed. Quality assurance plans provided by the consulting company noted above are in the form of how-to reference manuals, great for plant operators and staff reference.
Other air quality dutiesA group of air quality scientist types will also be adept at preparing climate summaries, to be used in applications and environmental impact assessments. Larger projects of this type have the specialized areas of expertise fulfilled by many smaller companies; this follows the school of minnows business concept, where individual supporters surround the central client for as long as needed. A good consultancy will have a broad client base and current climatic data on hand for this purpose.
Ambient monitoring forms a great part of the air consulting business. The first step in implementing an air quality monitoring system is choosing appropriate locations for monitoring equipment. Then comes using the air quality scientist expertise required to operate the stations and interpret the results. Leak Detection and Repair makes just one example of a good thorough air monitoring program.
If you know any plant operators and relevant companies who need regulatory compliance air quality projects performed to avoid future trouble, please forward this brief description onto them. Call this air quality scientist, Barry, at 403-547-7557 or by email: barry.lough @ calvinconsulting.ca (remove spaces).
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