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2 Introduction

This report presents the 2007 ambient air quality data set for Auckland and Christchurch, New Zealand. The monitoring is conducted by Watercare Services Ltd, on behalf of the Ministry for the Environment.

The Ministry for the Environment has a Memorandum of Understanding with the New Zealand Ministry of Health (MoH) to collect and supply air quality monitoring data to the World Health Organization (WHO) from three sites – two in Auckland and one in Christchurch.

This data has historically formed New Zealand’s contribution to the WHO’s Global Environmental Monitoring System / Air Pollution Programme (GEMS/AIR) which began in 1973.1

In 1996 the WHO developed the Air Management Information System (AMIS) – the successor to GEMS/AIR. The objective of AMIS is to transfer information on air pollutant concentrations and air quality management between countries and to support and assist in the maintenance of air quality in parts of New Zealand that enjoy clean air, and to improve air quality in places where it has deteriorated.

As a result, monitoring from the AMIS programme is used by the Ministry for the Environment to support and enhance ambient air quality monitoring and management in Auckland and Christchurch. The GEMS / AMIS ambient air quality sites are the longest running sites in New Zealand, and as such are very important in identifying local long-term trends of air pollution.

The Auckland sites are located in the industrial area of Penrose to the south-east of the city centre and in Mt Eden and Kingsland, both of which are older residential areas just south of the city centre. Air quality monitoring has been performed in Penrose since 1964 and at Mt Eden between 1982 and 2004. In October 2004, the Mt Eden site was decommissioned pending redevelopment of the site and replaced by the Kingsland site at Kowhai Intermediate. In September 2007, the Kowhai, Kingsland site was decommissioned due to the construction of a swimming pool complex on school grounds. At present an alternative site is under investigation.

Between 1989 and 2002 monitoring was undertaken in Christchurch at a site located in the older residential area of St Albans which is just north of the city centre. Due to impending redevelopment of this site the monitoring station was relocated in November 2002 to a site in Burnside / Bishopdale which is a newer residential area to the north-west of the city centre.

Environment Canterbury provided sampling services for gravimetric and passive monitoring methods at Christchurch sites (Coles Place, St Albans and Greers Road Burnside).

This report includes graphical and statistical presentations of the data as well as any data collection issues that may have arisen during the monitoring period.

All data in this report has been completely validated. Quality assurance checks have been carried out to ensure that invalid and calibration data is not reported.

 


1 Schwela DH. 1999. Public Health and the air management information system (AMIS). Epidemiology, 10(5): 647–655.