There’s a small army of citizen scientists in the North Fork Valley. Residents in the Paonia area are donning special backpacks for twenty-four hours at a time, to collect real time data for scientific study of air pollution. The aim is to measure what might be getting into the air from nearby oil and gas wells.
Today on the program we talk with Aspen Public Radio's Elise Thatcher, who was recently in the North Fork Valley reporting on a mobile air quality monitoring study being coordinated by Citizens for a Healthy Community and the Endocrine Disruption Exchange, or TEDX.
In the future, the forests surrounding Aspen will look different. Already, mountain shrubs are replacing some Aspen stands and changing the complexion of the area, likely due to due a warming climate.
Neighboring Pitkin County is now tracking these shifts on open space properties. Two local non-profit organizations are helping. The new data is thanks to a pair of towers that’s tracking things like soil moisture and temperature.