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Improving air quality at the Salton Sea

As a participant in the largest ag-to-urban water transfer in the nation, IID is implementing a series of air quality mitigation projects around the Salton Sea. At full ramp-up, the transfer will send up to 300,000 acre-feet of conserved water per year to urban areas of the state. This reduces the volume of agricultural return flow that makes its way to the Salton Sea, leading to larger amounts of exposed playa (dry lakebed) and increased dust emissions.

IID began monitoring air quality at the sea in 2010 and currently has six air stations strategically placed around its perimeter. Each air station collects dust and particulate levels, while also capturing meteorological information.

Armed with this and additional ground data, IID has taken a science-based approach that allows the district to identify and implement dust control measures on playa with the greatest potential for emissions. By being proactive and implementing projects before levels trigger regulatory oversight, the district can be more cost effective and ultimately have a greater impact on the sea and its surrounding communities.

Working in concert with the state’s Salton Sea Management Plan, IID will have more than 2,000 acres of air quality projects on the ground by the end of 2018.

For more information on IID’s air quality efforts, please visit www.iid.com/airquality.

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