Potential Visibility Effects at Grand Canyon National Park from Power Plants in Northwest New Mexico - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Potential Visibility Effects at Grand Canyon National Park from Power Plants in Northwest New Mexico

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Title: Potential Visibility Effects at Grand Canyon National Park from Power Plants in Northwest New Mexico


1
Potential Visibility Effects at Grand Canyon
National Park from Power Plants in Northwest New
Mexico
  • Carl Bowman
  • Air Quality Specialist
  • Grand Canyon National Park
  • December 9, 2004

2
Visibility in Grand Canyon
  • Visibility, our ability to see and appreciate the
    Grand Canyon, is a critical resource.
  • Congress hereby declares as a national goal the
    prevention of any future, and the remedy of any
    existing, impairment of visibility that results
    from manmade air pollution.
  • (Clean Air Act 169A (a)(1)

3
Analysis Methods
  • Conducted by NPS Air Resources Division
  • Photographs of existing impairment from actual
    2001 episode
  • Modeling analysis showing transport from
    northwest New Mexico
  • Maps summarize modeling analysis of proposed
    facility
  • Photographic depiction of potential impacts under
    different conditions

4
Layered Haze, Morning
5
Uniform Haze, Midday
6
The field of view of the monitoring camera
located at Desert View.
Visibility Monitoring Photos
7
A Clear Day in the Grand Canyon
1/14/01 245
Airmass stagnation over the Four Corner region
allows for emissions from power plants to
accumulate
8
Clouds and Plumes Move into the Colorado River
Valley
1/15/01 845
High pressure system breaks down, storm
circulation allows plumes to move toward Grand
Canyon.
9
Clouds and Plumes Move into the Colorado River
Valley
1/15/01 1200
Power plant emissions continue to travel down the
Colorado River drainage.
10
Clouds and Plumes Move into the Colorado River
Valley
1/16/01 1200
Emissions continue to circulate west and disperse
over a wider area, reaching Grand Canyon.
11
Clouds Evaporate but Plumes Remain as Layered Haze
1/17/01 245
After storm clouds evaporate, sulfate particles
from the plumes remain suspended in the Grand
Canyon, creating haze.
12
Next Day, the Haze is Gone
1/18/01 245
Haze-causing sulfate particles shrink, deposit,
and/or disperse enough that haze is no longer
visible.
13
Potential Impacts from the Proposed Source
  • Sources in northwest New Mexico have the
    potential to cause a layered haze within the
    Grand Canyon or contribute to a uniform haze
  • Effects are demonstrated using photographic
    depictions
  • Based on the estimated concentrations of
    pollutants from a power plant in northwestern New
    Mexico, and the radiative transfer properties of
    the pollutants

14
Conclusions
  • A new power plant in northwest New Mexico has the
    potential to impact the visibility at Grand
    Canyon National Park (as well as other national
    parks in the region)
  • These effects must be adequately analyzed in the
    EIS, and will require
  • High-resolution dynamic meteorological model runs
  • A transport and dispersion model capable of
    simulating complex flow
  • Radiative transfer modeling of the visibility
    effects
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