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IDEM’s Role

Understanding health risks and environmental effects associated with air toxics in Hoosier communities is one of the ways IDEM works to protect public health. IDEM maintains a comprehensive statewide ambient air monitoring network that includes an extensive network of air toxics monitors, as well as in-house laboratory that is capable of analyzing an array of compounds. IDEM’s Air Toxics Program utilizes many tools to assess air toxics data and ensure Indiana is meeting its clean air goals.

The Air Toxics Program tracks estimated air emissions from Indiana’s air toxics sources, including point sources (such as large industrial facilities), area sources (such as neighborhood dry cleaning businesses and auto body repair shops), and motor vehicles. Air modeling specialists, risk analysts, and HAP emissions inventory specialists screen and analyze the air toxics monitoring data, evaluate the emissions data, and utilize air models to provide as complete a picture as possible of Indiana’s air quality. IDEM’s ToxWatch Report contains a detailed routine analyses of air toxics monitoring data.

Where either monitoring or modeling data indicates an area may have elevated levels of pollutants, the Air Toxics Program may conduct an in-depth air risk assessment to evaluate potential health risks for local residents and identify measures that may be needed to reduce harmful emissions and improve air quality. IDEM has performed several local- and community-scale air toxics studies in Indianapolis and other Indiana communities. These studies combine monitoring and modeling data to identify pollutants of concern and cancer and non-cancer hazards they may pose to area residents.