International Air Quality Advisory Board
SPECIAL REPORT ON
10. THE WAY AHEAD: FUTURE BOARD ACTIVITY
In its report to governments, "The IJC and the 21st Century," the Commission identified transboundary air quality as one of the specific challenges for the next several decades. It also highlighted the importance of continually assessing the existing and long-term situation with respect to transboundary air flows and their effects, tracking future changes in air quality, and formulating appropriate remedial and preventative measures. To assist it in providing advice to the governments, the Commission has requested the Board to undertake studies of:
The future work of the Board, into the twenty-first century, will be rooted in the above studies, which are largely consistent with the current activities of the Board.
During 199597, the Board reviewed the status of research on the physical and chemical properties of the 29 contaminants and families of contaminants (see Table 5-1 in Section 5) in the U.S.Canada Binational Toxics Strategy, as well as associated emission inventories, modeling efforts, and deposition and ambient air monitoring. The initial output of this review was tabled at a May 1997 workshop co-sponsored with the Commission's Great Lakes Water Quality Board and held in Romulus, Michigan. The workshop also considered the Lake Michigan Mass Balance Study and ongoing specific efforts in pollution prevention. A summary of the workshop is contained in the Commission's report, 1995/97 Priorities and Progress under the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement.
As part of the Commission's 199799 Great Lakes Priorities, the Board is continuing its efforts to characterize the long-range transport of PTSs to the Great Lakes Basin. The Board is currently working to determine the status of several research needs identified during the Romulus workshop, including the need to further link specific PTSs found in the Great Lakes Basin to their originating sources and source regions. The ultimate objective of this work is to map these sourcereceptor relationships.
Concerning other pollutants and pollutant sources, the Board will begin to review and comment on the evolution of new Canadian ambient air guidelines for PM2.5, and will continue to review the implementation of the recently promulgated U.S. standard for this pollutant. Under this review, the Board will consider the adequacy of PM2.5 monitoring, particularly in the transboundary region, and the comparability of data generated by the two distinct measurement technologies chosen by the United States and Canada. The Board will also examine the measurement and transboundary movement of the ozone and acid rain and ozone precursor NOX, as well as continue to assess the effects of these pollutants on visibility, biota, and human health.
Concerning sources of emissions, the Board will focus on emissions of acid gases (particularly NOX) and particulates from electrical utilities and the mobile source sector. It will also give further attention to the utility sector as a source of mercury.
The Board will continue to review activities along the entire length of the transboundary region, and intends to report on significant developments as they emerge. Activities of the Board can be further tracked through the Commission's website, "www.ijc.org".