Written By: Tahreem

Edited By: Kiritika Rana

Design By: Tvisha Lakhani

Published By: Miriam Alonge Wato


Assume you’re sitting at your computer, scrolling through data from an air quality monitoring station on the outskirts of your city’s industrial park, which constantly measures stages of air pollutants. This information was flagged by one of your team’s technicians and forwarded to you for review. This station has been reporting unusually elevated levels of pollutants that could pose a threat to nearby residential areas.

As an air quality specialist, you examine this data as well as other contributing factors to determine why the levels of air pollution have risen and what needs to be done to protect the health of nearby residents, industrial park workers and the greenery as well. You’ll spend the next few days looking into the recent increase in air pollution in that part of town. First, you examine the data to determine which pollutants are prevalent in high concentrations in the air. This information will aid in determining the source: it is possible that one of the industrial park’s manufacturing plants released an excessive amount of pollutants into the air. You will also look at local geographic data to help you pinpoint the source of the emissions.

Once a source has been identified, you will examine local meteorological data, particularly weather patterns over the last few days. Changes in ambient air quality are influenced by pressure zones, wind speeds, and wind directions. You will also examine meteorological forecasts to see if local weather will exacerbate the situation or if winds will blow more pollution into residential areas. All of these factors become pieces of a puzzle that must be assembled to determine what is causing the reported increase in pollution and what needs to be done to keep people in the area safe. 

Duties of an Air Inspector:

Duties vary greatly from job to job, but the following are typical job duties that an air quality specialist might encounter:

  • Perform air quality field tests and impact analyses.
  • Prepare inventories of air emissions and organize and interpret data from monitoring sites.
  • Create different types of technology and air-sampling techniques.
  • Examine permit applications and determine compliance requirements.
  • Examine the contaminant-removal equipment’s condition and efficiency.
  • Create reports and make recommendations based on test results.
  • Examine ventilation and air supply systems to ensure safe indoor air.

Graduation Requirements:

An undergraduate degree is required for employment as an air quality specialist. If you want to be an air quality specialist, the following programs are best for you:

  • Engineering in Chemistry
  • Engineering of the Environment
  • Chemistry
  • Meteorology

Certification is not required for air quality specialists, but it is strongly recommended. International certification is available for air quality specialists. The following high school courses will prepare you for a career as an air quality specialist:

  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • The study of computers

How Air Inspectors Impact Agriculture:

Air pollution can harm crops and trees in numerous ways. Ground-level ozone can reduce agricultural crop and commercial forest yields, reduce tree seedling growth and survival, and increase plant susceptibility to disease, pests, and other environmental stresses (such as harsh weather). Air quality inspectors make sure the air is pure and clean. This helps a wide variety of plants survive dangerous pollutants in the air. 


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Team, Z. R. M. R. (n.d.). Air Quality Specialist: What is it? and how to become one? ZipRecruiter. Retrieved March 15, 2023, from https://www.ziprecruiter.com/career/Air-Quality-Specialist/What-Is-How-to-Become