1.2 Measurement sites
The study focused on sampling in the Sydney-Newcastle-Wollongong region, as this is where the concentrations of these pollutants are likely to be highest. The project also included measurement of specific compounds in a number of major regional centres where there was evidence that elevated levels of these compounds might be occurring.
Study design for each group of pollutants varied according to the information already available and likely patterns of emissions:
- Dioxins: Measurements were made at three sites: a rural background site (Siding Spring in central-western NSW); a site representative of conditions in an urban area in western Sydney (Westmead); and an urban site near a known industrial source of dioxins (Warrawong in Wollongong). Sampling ran from November 1998 to April 2000, except for three months in early 1999.
- Organics: Measurements were made at 10 sites in the Sydney-Newcastle-Wollongong during the period from early 1996 till August 2001: three sites from the pilot study and seven new ones to provide a more representative data set.
- Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs): Samples were collected at 22 sites, covering Sydney-Newcastle-Wollongong, as well as sites in the regional centres of Armidale, Cooma, Lithgow, Nowra, Orange and Tumut. The sites in the regional centres were selected because of the likely impacts of smoke from domestic solid fuel heaters in winter. Sampling occurred at various times between August 1997 and February 2001.
- Heavy metals: Eight sites were sampled in the Sydney-Newcastle-Wollongong region from mid-August to early September 2000 to establish concentrations of heavy metals at times when they were likely to be highest.
Page last updated: 26 February 2011