Baseline Air Quality Assessment of Goods Movement Activities before the Port of Charleston Expansion: A Community-University Collaborative


As the demand for goods continues to increase, a collective network of transportation systems is required to facilitate goods movement activities. This study examines air quality near the Port of Charleston before its expansion and briefly describes the establishment and structure of a community-university partnership used to monitor existing pollution. Particulate matter (PM) concentrations (PM2.5 and PM10) were measured using the Thermo Fisher Scientific Partisol 2000i-D Dichotomous Air Sampler, Thermo Scientific Dichotomous Sequential Air Sampler Partisol-Plus 2025-D, and Rupprecht & Patashnick TEOM Series 1400 Sampler at neighborhood (Union Heights, Rosemont, and Accabee) and reference (FAA2.5 and Jenkins Street) sites. Descriptive statistics were performed and an ANOVA (analysis of variance) was calculated to find the difference in overall mean 24-hour PM average concentrations in communities impacted by environmental injustice. PM2.5 (15.2 μg/m3) and PM10 (27.2 μg/m3) maximum concentrations were highest in neighborhoods such as Union Heights neighborhoods due to more goods movement activities. Nevertheless, there was no statistically significant difference in mean concentrations of PM2.5 and PM10 across neighborhood sites. In contrast, mean PM10 neighborhood concentrations were significantly lower than mean PM10 reference concentrations for Union Heights (p = 0.00), Accabee (p ≤ 0.0001), and Rosemont (p = 0.01). Although PM concentrations were lower than current National Ambient Air Quality Standards, this study demonstrated how community-university partners can work collectively to document baseline PM concentrations that will be used to examine changes in air quality after the port expansion brings additional goods movement activities to the area.

Publication Title

Environmental Justice