Air Quality

Effective: Moved to Policy Library from UPM 12.12(8), UPM 12.12(9), UPM 12.12(12)
Reviewed and Updated: February 2016
Contact: Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S)


The protection of the quality of the air is the responsibility of all Iowa State University personnel. Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S) ensures air quality protection by administering the ISU Central Campus Title V Operating Permit ("Title V" or "Permit"), and by applying for and overseeing Air Quality Construction Permits ("Construction Permits") for campus air pollution emission points. Title V and Construction Permits are based on state and federal air quality regulations, and are designed to control pollutants from equipment designated as significant potential contributors to air pollution. Regulatory requirements include exempting or permitting of individual sources, implementation of pollution reducing technologies, and mandatory reporting.

In addition, state and local rules restrict most open burning, and federal regulations require proper management of ozone-depleting refrigerants.

Applicable Terms


Any equipment that emits an air pollutant, including, but not limited to: fume hoods; stationary equipment combusting natural gas, coal, wood, fuel oil, diesel fuel, gasoline, or other fuels; woodshop dust collection and venting equipment; above ground and underground storage tanks; and research equipment emitting fine particles, fumes, smoke, or vapors.

Air Pollutant

Potentially anything other than ambient air. Equipment emissions must be reviewed by EH&S.

Policy Statement

General Duty

University personnel are required to adhere to federal, state and local air quality regulations, and additional requirements set forth in applicable Title V and Construction Permits, and other applicable federal, state, and/or local regulations.

Open Burning

Open burning of brush, debris, trash, refuse, or any other items is not allowed on Iowa State University property. Fires used for ceremonies or emergency response training are not considered open burning, but must be controlled and under observation at all times. Fires used for recreational purposes such as bonfires or campfires must be approved by EH&S. Tires, furniture, and appliances must not be burned at any time for any reason.

Title V Operating Permit

ISU employees shall maintain Title V sources in good working order at all times, keep maintenance and operating records as required by the Permit, report recorded information to EH&S when requested, and must not modify or remove Title V sources without contacting EH&S prior to commencing modification or removal.

Air Quality Construction Permits

Individual air pollutant emission sources must either be exempted or permitted according to Iowa Department of Natural Resources air quality regulations. ISU employees planning a teaching or research project, construction project, or any other type of project involving the installation or modification of equipment that emits air pollutants must contact EH&S prior to commencing construction or modification. EH&S will determine regulatory applicability and complete and submit the required Construction Permit application if necessary. Personnel responsible for the source must provide accurate and reliable equipment and emission data to EH&S, and agree to adhere to all parameters of the Air Quality Construction Permit.

Refrigerant Management

ISU personnel purchasing, handling, and managing refrigerants, repairing refrigerant-containing equipment and appliances, and/or purchasing or operating refrigerant recovery equipment must be trained and certified prior to conducting such activities. Documentation of such certification must be retained by the employee's department or unit and must be made available for inspection by an appropriate regulatory agency.