Emission testing is the practice of measuring the quantity of pollutants discharged from a source into the environment - this source might be a stack, an open liquid surface, a vent, a building, a pile, etc. Any nature of pollutant can be tested - chemicals, particulates, odour.
The reasons for carrying out testing can vary, and should be understood before scoping an emission testing programme. For example, is the testing required for Environmental Licence compliance, for reporting to the National Pollutant Inventory (Australia), to benchmark existing emissions prior to proposed upgrades or expansions, or to diagnose the cause of problematic emissions.
Air Quality Professionals works with specialist emission testing contractors to assist clients with emission monitoring, providing the following assistance as required:
- strategic overview of emission monitoring requirements, focussed on the end use of the data
- review of existing and historic data for gap analysis
- development of appropriate emission sampling programmes - what, where, when, how long, how many, cost
- preparation of briefs for contractors, and analysis of tenders
- liaison with testing contractors on site and/or by phone before, during and after testing programmes
- review of reports from testing contractors
- data ratification (data quality control, error checking)
- data analysis, interpretation, summary and reporting
Emission testing can be expensive, so it is important not to carry out unnecessary testing whilst still making sure that sufficient information is gathered for the required purpose.
Emission testing can also include instruments installed for permanent continuous measurements.