The San Jose neighborhood is located in Albuquerque’s South Valley. This community has existed in Albuquerque for decades and runs along the railway that runs through the city. As a result of loose zoning laws, residents here have to deal with a large industry presence in their community, including refineries, asphalt refineries, cement plants, automobile recycling plants, and a variety of chemical processing and storage facilities. San Jose Community members have worked hard to make known the industry presence and pollution in their neighborhood, and they are now partnering with Breathe In New Mexico to do air monitoring through their bucket brigade.
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.