Launched in October 1998, it was a project developed by the Mauritius Cane Industry Authority (formerly Mauritius Sugar Authority). A team, comprising of one Air Monitoring Officer, one Technical Assistant, one General Worker and a Heavy Vehicle Driver is permanently attached to the Air Monitoring Unit. Expert from USA (EMET Services) and UK (Monitor Labs Inc) provided training to the Air Monitoring Team.
The Air Monitoring Unit has the competency to perform the following test:
1. Ambient Air Quality (AAQ) monitoring using an environmental mobile laboratory.
2. Continuous Source Emission Monitoring (CEM) using another environmental mobile laboratory.
3. Particulate Matter (PM) sampling from stack emission using portable equipments
4. Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) monitoring using portable handheld instruments.
All the tests are performed as per US EPA Standards.
NEED FOR POLLUTION CONTROL
Awareness of the harmful effects of various air pollutants on materials, living organisms, and health has given rise to air pollution control. Both developed and undeveloped countries have been actively involved in this type of control and Mauritius as well is participating in this global effort to minimise or limit emission with the help of the Air Pollution Monitoring facility of the MCIA.
AMBIENT AIR QUALITY MONITORING
Ambient air quality monitoring is the monitoring of the quality of the air which people breathe. An automated system equipped with analysers, measure the following parameters:
1. SO2(sulphur dioxide),
2. NOx(oxides of nitrogen),
3. O3 (ground level ozone),
4. CO (carbon monoxide),
5. PM10(particulate matter below 10 microns in size, per cubic metre),
6. TSP (Total Suspended Solid Particles)
Measurements are based on dry absorption emissions methods. The system is also equipped with meteorological sensors for wind direction, wind speed, humidity and atmospheric temperature and pressure. The analysers give real time measurements, which can be averaged over 15 minutes or more and stored in a data logger. Remote sensing of these data can also be made through a modem using the GPRS (General Packet Radio Services) technology.