Navy to monitor air in key spots in Italy
June 2, 2008
NAPLES, Italy — The U.S. Navy in Naples is expanding on environmental monitoring services provided by Italian counterparts by putting air monitoring stations where U.S. and NATO members live and work.
Tetra Tech, a Navy-contracted environmental company, will place the stations in areas not serviced by the Italian government, which has them throughout the Campania region, according to Dr. (Cmdr.) Walter Dalitsch, the occupational health officer in Naples.
"The air monitoring stations will monitor for the usual components of smog and combustion products, such as ozone, sulfur dioxide, oxides of nitrogen and particulate matter, as well as for other potential air contaminants of possible concern for human health," Dalitsch said.
The stations are one part of a larger Navy initiative started in January by the Navy and Marine Corps Public Health Center because of concerns over uncollected trash, air pollution caused by burning trash, and possible soil contamination caused by illegal dumping. Experts also plan to test the water and soil of some residents who live off base.
The nine sites chosen by the Navy include the support site base in Gricignano, Capodichino base, government housing areas of Parco Eva and Parco Le Ginestre, leased property in Casal di Principe, the Lago Patria receiver site, Carney Park recreational facility, the Allied Joint Force Command base in Bagnoli, and the U.S. consulate’s office in downtown Naples.
Italian and U.S. environmental experts will share their respective collected data, Dalitsch said.
Additionally, Tetra Tech is building a meteorological tower at the support site to measure weather variables, such as temperature, humidity, wind direction and speed, and barometric pressure.
"The reason this is important is because when you are sampling air for possible containments, amounts measured in the air will change with the changing weather conditions," Dalitsch said. "You can have false elevations [of possible contaminants] or false reductions if you don’t take into account changing weather conditions."
The air monitoring stations should be up and running by July 3, said Kelly Burdick, spokeswoman for the Naval Facilities Engineering Command Europe and Southwest Asia.
Experts will collect and analyze data over the next year.
"Each air sampling station will include one PM10 Sampler, for particulates and metals analysis, and two polyurethane filter membranes, for organic compounds," she said. Each station will operate for a 24-hour period on 10 randomly selected days during a 30-day period. The days will vary throughout the nine sampling locations.
The stations also will have Summa canisters, placed on the ground to take soil and gas samples. They will operate for 20- to 24-hour periods picked at random.
Health and environmental experts are conducting short- and long-term analyses, scrutinizing air, water, soil and food, to determine if assignments to
Health and environmental experts are conducting short- and long-term analyses, scrutinizing air, water, soil and food, to determine if assignments to Naples jeopardize servicemembers’ health. Results periodically will be put on the Navy’s Web site at: http://www.nsa.naples.navy.mil/risk/index.cfm.