Air Quality 101
A number of air pollutants can cause damage to health. Six major air pollutants (Carbon Monoxide, Lead, Nitrogen Dioxide, Ozone, Particulate Matter, and Sulfur Dioxide) have been identified as causing health effects at concentrations in the ambient air (the outside air we breathe) above thresholds established at levels known to be safe.
These pollutants are referred to as "criteria pollutants" and a National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) has been established for each based on health related criteria and data.
Other Air Pollutants
Stationary, area and mobile sources all emit air pollutants into the atmosphere. Stationary sources include utility, industrial, institutional and commercial facilities. Examples are electric power plants, phosphate processing plants, pulp and paper mills, and municipal waste combustors. Area sources include many individual, small activities such as gasoline service stations, small paint shops, consumer solvent use, and open burning associated with agriculture and forest management actives. Mobile sources include cars, trucks, and sport-utility vehicles; off road vehicles and mobile construction equipment; commercial and freight hauling vehicles; locomotives, buses, and ships and others.
Federal and state regulations keep the air clean by limiting the amount of air pollutants that are emitted from stationary and area sources. The department issues permits for the construction and operation of these sources. In addition, we confirm that sources are in compliance with applicable regulations through conducting air inspections, reviewing reports and pursuing enforcement. We also maintain an annual emissions inventory so we can track the amounts of air pollutants emitted over time (by individual source and statewide).
Beyond Stationary and area sources, we implement the federal asbestos program in Florida. The asbestos regulations ensure that asbestos is safely handled during construction projects, and the rules apply to most demolition and renovation projects in the state.
Last updated: February 28, 2014