Less pollution noted in Smokies air monitoring

Great Smoky Mountains in October, (Source: Kyle Grainger, WVLT)

Great Smoky Mountains in October, (Source: Kyle Grainger, WVLT)

MARYVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Data from a monitoring station in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park is part of an investigation into changing air quality.

The study is called the Southern Oxidant and Aerosol Study and it is funded by the Environmental Protection Agency. Scientists will examine how organic compounds and man-made emissions affect air quality by examining their atmospheric transformations and interactions.

Data from the Look Rock observation station is included.

Tennessee Valley Authority spokesman Duncan Mansfield said the station has been documenting significant reductions in haze and smog that parallel lower emissions from TVA's coal-fired power plants.

TVA environmental monitoring senior manager Dennis Yankee said that over the years, the utility has reduced sulfur levels by 94 percent and nitrogen levels by 90 percent in emissions from its power plants.

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