What does this program measure?
The GAPS program at MLO is part of a sampling network with approximately 65 sites on seven continents that was established to investigate air concentrations of persistent organic pollutants (POPs, e.g., PCBs, organochlorine pesticides). Pass
How does this program work?
Passive air samplers (PASs) are used to obtain spatial information on the distribution of POPs because of their simplicity, low cost, and electricity-free operation.
Why is this research important?
Deployment of PASs over several seasons and years would allow temporal trends to be established, and thus the effectiveness of POPs control measures to be evaluated on a global scale.
Are there any trends in the data?
The program at Mauna Loa is upcoming. Results from MLO will be available within 6-12 months after the first samples are sent to Environment Canada (which is 1 year after the program begins). The "Comments and References" section below lists results that have been published from other GAPS sites.
How does this program fit into the big picture?
What is it's role in global climate change?
The purpose of the study is to increase the resolution of background passive air monitoring stations at oceanic sites. The results of this network will be used to assess time trends of POPs concentrations in air and to develop/test global atmospheric transport models for POPs. This information is being compiled to assess the effectiveness of recent control measures on POPs that have been established as part of the international treaties on POPs such as the Stockholm Convention of the United Nations Environment Program - ratified in 2004.
Comments and References
Results have been published form the pilot phase of the global passive sampling network. They include:
Global Atmosphere Passive Sampling (GAPS) Network