Residents Learn About Mystic River Watershed Study of Air Quality in Everett

Special to the Independent

Everett residents met with air quality and climate health professionals to learn about the Mystic River Watershed Association’s three-year study (CLEANAIR) of air quality in Everett.

Both an air quality workshop (Jan. 17) and listening session (Feb. 6) were held in Everett.

Councilor-at-Large Katy Rogers, who attended the workshop, said, “The Everett Air Quality Meeting was well attended and informative. I learned there is a device on top of Everett City Hall measuring the pollution in our community. This is an issue we should be concerned about, and I appreciate there are tangible measures being taken to address it.”

Nicole Fina, who is the civic engagement and advisory manager for Everett Community Growers, attended both meetings in Everett and a listening session in Charlestown Feb. 8.

“Everett Community Growers is a part of the CLEANAIR project team, so we’re helping with the engagement,” said Fina. “We’re partnering with the Mystic River Watershed Association.”

Fina said that 36 residents attended the Feb. 6 meeting in Everett. She added that two physicians from CHA participated in the meeting.

“We talked about the monitor located on top of City Hall, and we had residents pick out an area in Everett where air quality monitoring could be done and where there are concerns,” said Fina.

Fina said the long-term monitoring of air quality in Everett “will take two to three years for the results to come in.”

Much of the air quality study is focusing on transport-related air pollution, according to Fina.

“I found the meeting in Everett to very productive,” said Fina. “We had a very good turnout and a wide demographic. People gave their feedback about how different causes of air pollution could affect them in their daily lives, like walking to school or work or taking the bus. I think people were really able to contextualize everything and put the pieces together why we’re doing air quality monitoring in Everett.”

To-date, forty-seven people have responded to the air-quality survey connected to the project. Fina encourages residents to complete the survey which is available at the Mystic River/CLEANAIR website.

Mystic River Watershed Association Executive Director Patrick Herron said, “We’re holding learning sessions to meet with residents to learn about the concerns they have and also have them share their knowledge with us so we can understand the hot spots and where air quality might be poor in the community,” related Herron. “The end result is if we can learn where the problems are and better understand them with some really sophisticated monitoring – that gives us a change to talk with municipal planners and businesses, and try to find solutions.”

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