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Air Quality Consultants

Phlorum are expert air quality consultants who have considerable experience in providing air quality consultancy services, including independent air quality assessments for a diverse range of industries and sources of pollution.

With a published, academic understanding of air quality issues and experience of expert witness work, we routinely carry out air quality reports and predictive dispersion modelling assessments for planning applications ranging from single dwellings up to Environmental Statement chapters for large schemes requiring detailed Environmental Impact Assessments. We can also provide input for assessments as part of the permitting process for industrial processes.

The key areas we work in are:

  • Industrial
  • Construction
  • Planning
  • Transport
  • Energy

Air Quality Services

Air pollution has the potential to impact everyone, indoors and outdoors, through long-term chronic ill-health effects to short-term acute effects and nuisance. Consequently, the measurement, prediction, control and management of air pollution is critical to protect the health and well-being of employees and the general public.

The most common services that we offer are as follows:

  • The UK Air Quality Strategy – We support local authorities with their Local Air Quality Management (LAQM) commitments, helping them to deliver their Clean Air Zones (CAZs) and to implement their Air Quality Action Plans (AQAPs).
  • Road Traffic Emissions – We conduct air quality modelling assessments using screening methodologies, such as the DMRB, or more detailed assessments using a variety of air dispersion models, e.g. ADMS, Aermod and the US EPA Caline Suite.
  • Industrial Emissions -We support industrial and commercial clients with monitoring, modelling and assessment of impacts from industrial and commercial properties and processes.
  • Construction Emissions – Our clients in the construction industry regularly require modelling and monitoring of the emissions of dust, odours, volatile and toxic compounds from remediation, demolition and construction on residential, commercial and industrial sites.
  • Air Pollution Effects on Ecology – Nitrogen deposition from industrial and road traffic emissions can have an impact on the biodiversity of  sensitive ecological sites. Recent guidance is helping consultants like Phlorum to properly assess such effects and to provide appropriate advice to operators of industrial processes and developers whose schemes might increase traffic and other emissions.
  • Odour Assessments & Surveys – Odour is a complicated parameter to measure and much research has been conducted into developing assessment methods and monitoring equipment to replicate this highly complex human sense. Phlorum staff are well versed in such methods and routinely provide monitoring and assessment services to clients such as busy restaurants and operators of waste water treatment processes.
  • Occupational Exposure & Radiation Monitoring – We are experienced in providing a wide range of assessment services for workplace explore to airborne pollutants. We can also undertake radiation monitoring, particularly with regard to NORM (technically enhanced naturally occurring radioactive material) in the oil and gas sector.

Not Sure if You Need an Air Quality Assessment?

We sometimes find that many clients are unsure if they require an air quality assessment. The need for an air quality assessment will generally be determined by the local planning authority or the environmental regulator. However, the following criteria provide an indication of when an assessment is likely to be required:

Changes in Traffic Flows

  • 500 light vehicle movements, or >100 inside an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA)
  • 100 heavy vehicle movements, or >25 inside an AQMA
  • Underground car park with >100 daily trips
  • Any car park with >100 spaces, or >50 inside an AQMA

Combustion Processes

  • Any plant using biofuel
  • Any combustion plant >300kW (thermal input), e.g. boilers, CHP
  • Any smaller plant with a low efflux point

Location

  • Any highly sensitive receptors (i.e. dwellings, schools, hospitals) being introduced into an area of poor air quality, i.e.:
    • Within an AQMA;
    • Within circa 30m of a busy road (>10,000 daily traffic movements); or
    • Close to another significant pollution source, e.g. industry or sewage treatment.
  • Any development within 500m of a statutory designated ecological site (e.g. Ramsar, SSSI, SAC, SPA, SINC).

Construction

  • Any development within 350m of sensitive receptors (level will depend on scale).

Scale of Development

  • Any major development, as defined by the Town and Country Planning Act, including:
    • 10 or more new dwellings / >0.5ha residential;
    • Buildings with >1,000m2 floor space;
    • Any development >1ha; or
    • Any mineral or waste development.

If you are unsure which air quality service you might require, please don’t hesitate to contact one of our expert consultants, who will be happy to offer advice based on your specific needs and circumstances.