Particulate Matter Pollution
Particulate Matter, PM, or particle pollution, is a mixture of airborne solid particles and liquid droplets. Sources for PM can be both man-made and naturally occurring. Particles can also come directly from a single source, like a construction site or fire, or can be the result of complex chemical reactions among numerous sources, for example sulfur dioxide or nitrogen oxide. Examples of PM include dust, smoke, soot, fly ash, aerosols, fumes, mists, and condensing vapors. PM can be further defined by particle size. Very small particles having a diameter less than 2.5 micrometers, known as PM2.5, are potentially harmful to human health since small particles can be inhaled deep into the lungs.
Escambia County PM Monitoring
Escambia County regulates recovered materials processing facilities, recycling facilities, resource recovery facilities, and volume reduction plants under applicable regulations of the code of ordinances and the land development code. New recycling and other similar facilities are currently required to obtain an Escambia County permit from the Development Services Department in order to legally operate. Air monitoring for particulate matter pollution is a requirement of all of these permitting facilities. The Escambia County Water Quality and Land Management Division conducts air monitoring at permitted recycling facilities quarterly and when the facilities are actively crushing or processing materials. Emission levels for PM2.5 shall not exceed a one-time hourly average of 35 µg/m3 (micrograms per cubic meter of air) at the property line.