Aspen Group Publishes Concerns About Jet Fuel Pollution at Children's Ski School

Aspen Group Publishes Concerns About Jet Fuel Pollution at Children's Ski School

A group concerned with air pollution at Aspen/Pitkin County Airport has published a report outlining concerns jets at the airport may be causing air pollution at Buttermilk Mountain.

Buttermilk is host to the X Games and the “Powder Pandas” Children’s Ski School, which is on the side of the mountain closer to the airport

The group, called Aspen Fly Right, is asking for further study into possible air pollution caused by the airport.

“Downwind of the Airport, the community and its elected officials have long heard anecdotal reports of, and many have personally experienced, air pollution’s signs — throat and eye irritation, fuel odor, respiratory symptoms — but no one has measured them,” the report stated.

The report particularly focused on the proximity of the airport to the “Powder Pandas” children’s ski school, and the types of chemicals being produced by burning jet fuel.

“We did not attempt, and we were not enabled by instrument quality and specialized training, to conduct the sort of professional air-quality assessment that highly skilled and well-funded specialist organizations perform.

“We sought only to conduct an instrumented reconnaissance that could test whether observed air pollution in this specific health-critical site might indicate thorough expert study,” the report stated.

The group is asking for more expert study on whether certain chemical levels at their airport are too high. A group of volunteers measured chemical levels over Presidents Day Weekend, but most government regulations are based on longer periods of time.

The report notes the type of air pollution being discussed is different from Greenhouse Gas emissions, which Aspen Fly Right is also concerned with.

“The facts we found do appear to warrant a significant public investment of time, money, skill, and attention in proper measurement. So although we don’t know all the answers, we’ve established the validity of the questions,” the report stated.

By: Sam Klomhaus I The Daily Sentinel I March 2023

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