Example Projects:

National Park Service Projects


E&S Environmental Chemistry works with the National Park Service nationwide, and our project list is extensive. Described below are some example projects that we are either currently working on or have completed in recent years.

Air Quality Related Values

Tonto National Park located in the Sonoran Desert NetworkAvailable information and data are being compiled on the most sensitive Air Quality Related Values (AQRVs) in the 32 park networks within the National Park system throughout the United States. Park-specific analyses focus primarily on those parks thought to contain the greatest concentration of air pollution-sensitive resources.We are evaluating the current status of these air pollution-sensitive resources, and evaluating the future prognosis for damage or recovery.

This report is currently in progress.

Parks at Risk from Oil- and Gas-Related Activities

Area of InterestThe focus of this assessment is on park lands in the intermountain West and Great Lakes regions that are known to contain N-sensitive receptors and that may be exposed to increased N deposition in the future due to local energy and/or mineral extraction development.

This report is currently in progress.

NPS Acidification Risk Assessment

This project evaluates the sensitivity of all 272 Inventory and Monitoring (I&M) national parks in the United States to potential acidification effects caused by atmospheric sulfur (S) and nitrogen (N) deposition. This assessment includes consideration of three factors that influence acidification risk to park resources from atmospheric S and N deposition: pollutant exposure, inherent ecosystem sensitivity, and park protection mandates. Parks and park networks are ranked from lowest to highest risk.

This report is available to download from the National Park Service website.

NPS Nitrogen Risk Assessment

This risk assessment project evaluates the sensitivity of all 272 Inventory and Monitoring (I&M) national parks in the United States to potential nutrient enrichment effects caused by atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition. This assessment includes consideration of three factors that influence nutrient enrichment risk to park resources from atmospheric N deposition: N pollutant exposure, inherent ecosystem sensitivity, and park protection mandates. National parks and networks are ranked according to each of these factors (themes).

This report is available for downloading at the National Park Service website.

Plant Biodiversity Modeling

The major objective of this study was to test the northern European ForSAFE-VEG dynamic model system for a generalized site in the Rocky Mountains region of the United States, in order to test the model's feasibility as a tool for estimating critical input loads of nitrogen (N) deposition, using nitrate leaching and ground vegetation biodiversity as the critical targets. Model simulation results suggest that air pollution inputs of N and climate change are tightly linked and result in changes in the distribution and diversity of alpine and subalpine plant species.

The journal article is available for downloading here. The workshop report is available for downloading here.

Shenandoah National Park Air Quality Related Values (AQRV)

This assessment by E&S Environmental Chemistry and collaborating university and federal agency scientists evaluated the current and possible future status of air quality and air pollution effects in Shenandoah National Park in Virginia.  It focused on the park’s key known air quality related values (AQRVs), including visibility, streamwater chemistry, fish, soils, and vegetation, and the human-caused air pollutants that most affect them.

The full report is available for downloading here.

Outreach Publications

We have designed pamphlets and brochures for the National Park Service which describe the causes and effects of air quality degradation in the National Park. Outreach publications are intended for stakeholders and the general population of park visitors. They explain complex, interdisciplinary science in ways that are understandable to the target audiences.

The large pamphlet is available for downloading here and the trifold pamphlet is available for downloading here.