Emissions of major air pollutantsIndicator
Data on the sources and emissions of diffuse source air pollution, which make up the majority of emissions in the ACT, has not been updated since 1999. In the absence of current data it is not possible to assess changes in air pollution emissions over the reporting period. The ACT’s annual monitoring and reporting activities for point source (industry) emissions complied with the National Environment Protection National Pollutant Inventory Measure over the reporting period.
- ? Poor
- ? Unknown
- ? Good
Indicator assessment legend
Environmental condition is healthy across the ACT, OR pressure likely to have negligible impact on environmental condition/human health.
Environmental condition is neither positive or negative and may be variable across the ACT, OR pressure likely to have limited impact on environmental condition/human health.
Environmental condition is under significant stress, OR pressure likely to have significant impact on environmental condition/ human health.
Data is insufficient to make an assessment of status and trends.
Adequate high-quality evidence and high level of consensus
Limited evidence or limited consensus
Evidence and consensus too low to make an assessment
Assessments of status, trends and data quality are not appropriate for the indicator
Knowledge on the sources of air pollutants is important for the management of air pollution. The sources and amounts of pollutants emitted into the atmosphere are influenced by many factors including population, economic activity, prosperity, mobility and personal behaviour.
Due to the low level of industrial activity in the ACT, air quality is largely determined by activities and conditions in our urban areas. For instance, the number of cars being driven and the use of wood heaters in Canberra’s suburbs are major factors influencing air quality.
Condition and trends
The sources and volumes of emissions of air pollutants in the ACT is reported in the National Pollutant Inventory (NPI). Whilst point source emissions are reported annually, data on the sources and emissions of diffuse source air pollution dates from a single 1999 study. It is important to note that diffuse sources of air pollutants, especially from transport and wood heaters, are the most significant contributors to air pollution in the ACT.Office of the Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment, 2015, ACT State of the Environment Report 2015, ACT Government, Canberra. Consequently, in the absence of current data it is not possible to assess changes in air pollution emissions for this reporting period.
National Environment Protection National Pollutant Inventory Measure (NPI NEPM)
Point-source emissions are regulated by the ACT Government. Maximum concentration limits are placed on certain substances being emitted from industrial sources; these limits are regulated through the Environment Protection Act 1997. There are several industrial facilities in the ACT that must report to the EPA on their total point-source emissions each year. The annual monitoring and reporting of point source emissions is required under the NPI NEPM. During the reporting period (up to and including 2017–18), the ACT’s monitoring and reporting activities complied with the NPI NEPM.National Environment Protection Council, 2019, National Environment Protection Council Annual Report 2017–2018, Canberra, accessed August 2019