Skip to main content

LATEST UPDATES: Tracking COVID-19 (coronavirus)

State Funds Paying For More Air Pollution Monitoring In San Diego

Photo by Erik Anderson

A Prius with special gear in the trunk that allows it to sample air while driving on San Diego County roads in Barrio Logan's Chicano Park on May 5, 2019

San Diego County officials are getting a much more robust pollution tracking system, thanks to a new state grant.

San Diego County officials hope to have a much better picture of the region’s air pollution problems soon.

That’s because the California Air Resources Board is paying for 15 new movable air pollution monitors that can help pinpoint problems.

The $2.5 million grant comes from the state’s cap and trade program which sells carbon credits to polluters.

San Diego County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher said all of the county’s residents deserve clean air.

“If we can monitor it, we can better address it, but the monitoring alone will not improve the air quality,” said Fletcher. “It’s the data we get from monitoring that will hold us accountable for actions we take to actually improve air quality.”

RELATED: San Diego Smog Among The Nation’s Worst

Disadvantaged communities suffer the most.

A child born in Barrio Logan is eight times more likely to develop asthma than a child born in La Jolla, according to Fletcher.

The state grant also pays for two cars to drive the counties main roads with a mobile air monitor. The air is sampled, recorded and uploaded where it can be put together.

The Air Pollution Control District’s Robert Kard says two mobile monitors will also drive local roads for a month.

“They’re driving every road 20 times, within this area, 12 census tracts and giving us a picture of pollution for particulate matter, for gasses," said Robert Kard of the Air Pollution Control District of the County of San Diego. “And so with that, we’ll look at their data on a 3D visual graph and we’ll be able to say we need to pinpoint something here. Let’s put our permanent samplers here.”

By Reporter Erik Anderson

San Diego officials are using a state grant to find out where the county has air pollution issues.

You can hear this story and other local news every morning by subscribing to San Diego News Matters, KPBS’ daily news podcast. Subscribe via iTunes, Google Play or your favorite podcatcher.

FEATURED PODCAST

San Diego News Matters podcast branding

KPBS' daily news podcast covering local politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings so you can listen on your morning commute.

  • Don’t have time to keep up on the latest news? We’ve got you covered with a mid-week check-in every Wednesday afternoon.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Photo of Erik Anderson

Erik Anderson
Environment Reporter

opening quote marksclosing quote marksI focus on the environment and all the implications that a changing or challenging environment has for life in Southern California. That includes climate change, endangered species, habitat, urbanization, pollution and many other topics.

Want more KPBS news?
Find us on Twitter and Facebook, or sign up for our newsletters.

To view PDF documents, Download Acrobat Reader.