Breathe In New Mexico is partnering with Diné CARE to work on collecting data on air quality in the 4 corners region of New Mexico. Residents are using an air monitor that measures particulate matter in order to see the air quality impacts from nearby coal mines and coal-fired power plants. Being located near coal mines and power plants families in the four corners area have long felt the impacts of polluting industry. Through air monitoring, they hope to have the data necessary to identify what is contained within the particulate matter in the air they breathe.
What's a Bucket Brigade? A bucket brigade is a methodology of collecting air quality data that is community friendly and easy to do, yet still holds up to scientific standards. Community members keep logs of how the air near their homes smells or feels day in and day out. They take an air sample using a bucket when the air smells or feels particularly toxic, which is then sent to a lab for analysis.
What's an Air Quality Bucket? The bucket itself consists of parts you can buy at a local hardware store, and can be easily assembled by a couple of people. The bucket then uses a small vacuum and lab-approved sample bags to collect a sample of air. The process of taking a sample only takes a few minutes. Attorney Ed Masry and Denny Larson of the Global Community Monitor helped to launch and provide buckets to communities in need of air quality analysis. Since then many communities have used bucket brigades to expose the poor air quality they are experiencing as a result of nearby polluting industries. Breathe In New Mexico is proud to have partnered with the Global Community Monitor on our air quality campaign.