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Council Resolution 96-05

Council Resolution 96-05

Distribution:  General



Toronto, August 2nd, 1996

Ensuring Data Compatibility on Air Quality and Emissions


REAFFIRMING the importance of the objectives of the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation (NAAEC);

DETERMINED to take action pursuant to Article 10(2)(a) of the NAAEC which provides that the Council may consider and develop recommendations regarding: “comparability of techniques and methodologies for data gathering and analysis, data management and electronic data communications on matters covered by this Agreement”;

TAKING INTO ACCOUNT Article 7 of the Agreement Between the Government of Canada and the Government of the United States of America on Air Quality, which provides that the Parties agree to exchange information on monitoring, emissions, technologies, measures and mechanisms for controlling emissions, atmospheric processes and effects of air pollutants;

ALSO TAKING INTO ACCOUNT the Agreement Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the United Mexican States on Cooperation for the Protection and Improvement of the Environment in the Border Area, and other subsequent bilateral activities pursuant to this Agreement;

BUILDING UPON activities under existing agreements by focusing on the compatibility of methodologies for data collection and analysis;

CONVINCED of the importance of reliable and relevant environmental data to assist the Parties and others in taking informed and responsible actions pursuant to the NAAEC and other bilateral or multilateral agreements;

AFFIRMING that compatible methodologies and data are necessary for an accurate representation of North American air quality and emissions;

ACKNOWLEDGING that equivalent air quality data provide a consistent basis for determination of compliance with applicable standards and objectives;

CONSCIOUS that different air quality standards and objectives lead to different public perceptions of air quality;

ACKNOWLEDGING that compatible methodologies and data assist in more accurate modeling and transboundary impact assessment;

STRESSING the importance that Parties retain equivalent reference programs and/or laboratories for standards and measurements, which are necessary to assure data comparability;

RECOGNIZING that consistent environmental monitoring site specifications and documentation are essential to ensure compatibility;

CONSCIOUS that relative data biases between sampling networks are readily identified by implementing a joint comprehensive quality assurance and quality control program;

SUPPORTING the commitment of the Parties in their bilateral agreements to assure comparable and compatible methodologies and data quality control for air emissions and meteorological information;


AGREES to promote regional cooperation among the Parties for the development of air quality monitoring, modeling and assessment programs in North America through the promotion, collection, and exchange of appropriate data, and the development and application of appropriate models for the range of chemical substances of mutual concern as defined by the Commission for Environmental Cooperation; and

RECOMMENDS that the Parties work toward adopting compatible methodologies for compiling and reporting emissions inventories;

ENCOURAGES the Parties to maintain programs and/or laboratories that provide reference materials and develop reference methods to ensure compatible data;

RECOMMENDS the joint placement and joint calibration, when each are appropriate, of monitoring equipment at mutually-agreed upon sites, as resources become available, with mutually-agreed upon protocols and schedules, in order to ascertain data compatibility with respect to monitoring and modeling of mutually-agreed upon substances.



(S) Carol M. Browner


Carol M. Browner

Government of the United States of America


(S) Julia Carabias


Julia Carabias

Government of the United Mexican States


(S) Sergio Marchi


Sergio Marchi

Government of Canada

Ensuring Data Compatibility on Air Quality and Emissions