Submitted to: National Cotton Council Beltwide Cotton Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/19/2005
Publication Date: 1/7/2005
Citation: Hughs, S.E., Armijo, C.B., Whitelock, D.P., Buser, M.D. 2005. Particulate concentration measurement at a New Mexico cotton gin. In: Proceedings of the Beltwide Cotton Conferences, January 4-7, 2005, New Orleans, Louisiana. p. 553-559. 2005 CDROM.
Interpretive Summary: A monitoring study of boundary line particulate concentrations was conducted at a commercial New Mexico cotton gin during the entire 2003 ginning season. The study was initiated by the New Mexico Environmental Department with the cooperation of Mesa Farmers Cooperative Gin and the USDA-ARS Southwestern Cotton Ginning Research Laboratory as part of the process of developing a cotton gin construction permit for the State of New Mexico. Federally approved particulate samplers were collocated with samplers designed to collect total particulate. These samplers were arranged in a boundary line monitoring network that was pre-approved by the EPA. Some conclusions from the study are: 1) particulate concentrations predicted by current EPA models were several orders of magnitude higher than actual concentrations observed by the collocated samplers, 2) downwind boundary line particulate concentrations indicated a direct response to wind speed and off-site fugitive dust sources, and 3) downwind boundary line particulate concentrations indicated no relationship to gin facility particulate emissions. Data analysis is not yet complete, but it is expected that the final data will be used as part of an effort to develop a more accurate prediction model for low level agricultural sources of particulate.
Technical Abstract: Cotton gins generate particulate emissions as part of the ginning process. Particulate emission concentrations are controlled by both federal and state regulations. Regulations very from state to state but virtually all cotton producing states have some regulatory mechanism by which cotton gins show compliance with maximum particulate emission levels in order to obtain permits to be constructed or to operate. Commercial gin compliance with national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) for particulate can be demonstrated by modeling or by direct measurement of boundary line particulate concentration levels. The State of New Mexico is in the process of developing a general construction permit for cotton gins. The permitting process in New Mexico has been stymied in the past because the EPA approved dispersion model (ISCST3) significantly over-predict the boundary line concentrations of low level sources of particulate such as cotton gins. This report documents the results of boundary line particulate concentration measurements of a commercial cotton gin during a complete ginning season.