The National Air Quality Site Assessment Tool is designed to provide assistance to livestock and poultry producers and their advisors in assessing a producer’s performance in minimizing air emissions and in determining where there are opportunities to reduce air emissions.
NAQSAT considers the influence of diet and feed management; animal housing and management; manure handling, storage and application practices; mortality management; and internal and nearby road management practices on air emissions based upon the most credible information and understanding of management systems available when the tool was developed. Practices that may not influence emissions, but may affect neighbor relations are considered.
Upon completion of the on-line tool, NAQSAT users are shown a report that summarizes percentage scores for six emissions of primary interest (ammonia, methane, volatile organic compounds, hydrogen sulfide, particulates, and odor). The scores apply for the given facility and associated infrastructure and reflect the degree to which an operation has incorporated all of the feasible practices that would effectively minimize air emissions from the facility. For example, a bar that is predominately green for odor indicates that a producer is employing a relatively high degree of management and incorporating most of the best practices currently available for controlling odor from that specific component of his/her operation. A mostly white bar indicates that there are additional measures or improvements in management that the producer should consider. Scores within the categorized management areas provide the user with information regarding the extents to which effective practices are being implemented within each of the specific areas (and, conversely, the extents to which opportunities remain to improve management). Management areas receiving low scores will generally present more low-hanging-fruit opportunities.
NAQSAT facilitates evaluating the effects of changing practices or implementing control technologies, and users are encouraged to compare scores for differing prospective scenarios. With NAQSAT, when a practice in one management area is implemented or improved, the scores for that area are adjusted. Changing a practice in one part of the farm may impact emissions from another source within the farm. Trade-offs may exist such that all categories of emissions cannot effectively be minimized. Also, changing a practice to reduce emission of one gas or pollutant may actually increase the emission of another gas or pollutant. Users should consider how these changes occur and recognize the importance of each gas and pollutant within their own operation and situation.
See a video about the tool or read the brochure.