Air Quality - Monitoring
The review and assessment of air quality within South Bucks highlighted that the main source of air pollution in South Bucks is road traffic, emanating chiefly from the motorways that are routed through the district. Nitrogen dioxide and particulates (in the form of PM10) are the two main pollutants that arise from this source. Whilst the review indicated that there were no exceedences of the air quality objectives, both nitrogen dioxide and particulates were close to their respective objective trigger levels.
South Bucks District Council monitors concentrations of both nitrogen oxides and particulates across the district and compares the results against the concentration limit set within the air quality objective for each pollutant.
Nitrogen dioxide is monitored by the use of diffusion tubes located at 18 roadside locations across South Bucks. Gradko laboratory analyses the tubes on behalf of South Bucks and provide an average ambient concentration of nitrogen dioxide for the period that the tube is located at the monitoring point.
South Bucks commissioned a brand new air quality monitoring station in January 2001. The air quality station located adjacent to the M25 Motorway monitors current real time nitrogen dioxide levels. Data from the air quality monitoring station is downloaded by Officers everyday.
The station also monitors real time levels of particulates (in the form of PM10). South Bucks District Council use the data collated by these monitoring programmes to monitor whether air quality objectives are exceeded. The data will also be used in the future review and assessment of air quality in South Bucks.
More information about the review and assessment, together with previous annual air quality reports containing monitoring results from both the air quality monitoring station and the diffusion tubes can be found on the
Air Quality Review and Assessment webpage
Environmental Health is part of The Environment Unit and can be contacted directly on or by telephone on