Air quality monitoring
The EPA conducts long-term ambient air quality monitoring around the state. Monitoring is one of the tools used to improve our understanding of air pollution patterns and trends and the long term impacts on South Australian communities. This information can be used in conjunction with inventories, modelling and community engagement programs to underpin future policy directions aimed at reducing long-term risks to human health, and the environment.
Occasionally we also undertake shorter-term monitoring to evaluate local air quality issues such as was done in Mount Gambier and the Adelaide Hills as part of the SmokeWatch Program and was done in Golden Grove. The mobile monitoring station at Golden Grove was established as part of a short-term project to evaluate local air quality issues.
Monitoring is generally done according to the requirements of the National Environment Protection (Ambient Air Quality) Measure. The EPA also monitors meteorology at most of our sites. Validated monitoring data can be downloaded from Data SA. If the data you are looking for is not currently available, please email us the details of your request including the sites, parameters, averaging periods and time periods.
Some industries undertake their own ambient air monitoring in metropolitan Adelaide as well as regional centres around South Australia, included as a condition of their licence or environmental monitoring under the Mining Act 1971.
Recent air quality
- The table shows average pollutant concentrations for the previous hour. Concentrations are displayed in μg/m3 for particles (PM10) and fine particles (PM2.5) and in ppm for ozone, nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide, and carbon monoxide.
- Recent air quality data is indicative only and may be affected by instruments not working correctly, power failures and the like. Data will be validated at a later date.
- Times shown on this page are Australian Central Standard Time (ACST). During daylight savings an hour will need to be added to the times shown.
- This page is updated hourly at half past the hour, so air quality for the period 8 am to 9 am will be shown at 9.30 am.
The EPA uses a standardised procedure for checking data is accurate and either correcting or removing data that is incorrect, this is called data validation. Examples of why data may be incorrect are that the instruments have not worked properly or there has been a power failure.
*Air quality is described as either ‘very good’, ‘good’, ‘fair’, ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’ based on a comparison between pollutant concentrations and the relevant NEPM standards, and highlighted using the colours below:
|Very good air quality|
|Good air quality|
|Fair air quality|
|Poor air quality|
|Very poor air quality|
Unlike particles and gaseous pollutants which are measured continuously, lead is measured every 1 day in 6. Samples need to be collected and sent away for lead analysis, which can take up to a few weeks. For this reason lead is not used in the assessment of recent air quality above, so if the air quality at Oliver Street in Port Pirie is described as very good for example, this is in terms of particles and sulphur dioxide only.
The Department of Planning Transport and Infrastructure (DPTI) provides a number of web cam views, including views of Adelaide city and Adelaide Oval, which are updated every minute and give an indication of weather conditions in different locations.