Probabilistic Analysis of the Eight-Hour-Averaged CO Impacts of Highways

Report No: 80-R42

Published in 1980

About the report:

This report describes a method for estimating the probability that a highway facility will violate the eight hour National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for carbon monoxide (CO). The method is predicated on the assumption that overlapping eight-hour time periods which each yield average CO levels in excess of the NAAQS specified maximum level are counted as single rather than multiple pollution episodes. Air pollution levels are largely subject to the random influences of wind speed, wind direction, and atmospheric turbulence. Thus, with respect to an air quality standard, the acceptability of a proposed facility cannot be established deterministically. Since pollution levels seem best modeled as random variables, it is natural to address potential air quality impacts by estimating the probability of violating the relevant air quality standards.

Disclaimer Statement:The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s), who is responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Any inclusion of manufacturer names, trade names, or trademarks is for identification purposes only and is not to be considered an endorsement.


Other Authors

William A. Carpenter

Last updated: January 24, 2024

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