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Air Quality and Planning


MBARD is a government agency responsible for air quality across Monterey, Santa Cruz, and San Benito Counties, which form the North Central Coast Air Basin (NCCAB).   The Planning and Air Monitoring Division (P/AM) supports MBARD's mission to protect public health and the environment through several regulatory programs, including all official ambient air monitoring in the NCCAB.

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The P/AM Division collects data from seven monitoring sites that it operates year round throughout the NCCAB, and collects ozone data from a separate site operated by the National Parks Service at Pinnacles National Park.  The collected data is reviewed and submitted to the US EPA and to the California Air Resources Board (CARB).  Hourly data is also made immediately available to CARB, AIRNOW, and this website in order to provide the most current air quality information to the public.

The P/AM Division is also tasked to carry out wood smoke monitoring as needed. This includes the seasonal monitoring of wood stove use in areas like the San Lorenzo Valley in Santa Cruz County, large controlled burns such as those conducted at Fort Ord, others conducted for agricultural management, and for catastrophic events such as large structural fires and wildfires. Smoke monitoring is set up in these circumstances when it is determined that the smoke may enter areas where public health could be impacted. San Lorenzo Valley data is also made available on this website.

For additional program information, please contact David Frisbey, Planning and Air Monitoring Manager, at or (831) 647-9411.