We have the inherent authority to protect Cherokee air quality for the benefit of future generations

Air quality program logo

Clean air quality contributes to a healthy environment and healthy people

The air shed of the EBCI Reservation receives trans-boundary ozone and it’s precursors from upwind sources. This, combined with a general degradation of air quality, lends us to commit significant resources in monitoring our air conditions. As a Sovereign Nation, education, awareness, prevention, and mitigation of air pollution are critical to the EBCI culture.

Our goal is to maintain clean and healthy air quality for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Reservation.  The Air Quality Program started monitoring in 1999 and currently consists of two employees who are dedicated to EBCI air quality issues. We are funded by a grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under section 105 of the Clean Air Act (CAA).

Night sky

Reasons for Having an Ambient Air Quality Monitoring Program

  • To know the air pollution levels on a day to day basis, and to allow proper notifications/warnings about associated health effects.
  • To observe pollution trends locally and throughout the region.
  • To sustain natural resources for cultural, food and artisan uses.
  • To monitor the effects of the increase in motor vehicle traffic in the area due to tourism, general population growth and development.

Barnett Knob Monitoring Station

(Established 1999) – pollutants monitored: transport ozone and meteorological conditions (wind speed, wind direction, ambient temperature, solar radiation, relative humidity, barometric pressure).


Environmental Office Monitoring Station

(Established 2000) – pollutants monitored: filter base Particulate Matter 2.5 (PM2.5).

Sun in clouds

Old High School Monitoring Station

(Established 2011) – pollutants monitored: population exposure ozone, continuous PM2.5, and meteorological conditions (wind speed, wind direction, ambient temperature, solar radiation, relative humidity, barometric pressure, dew point).

Valley fog

Tribal Environmental Exchange Network (Trex) site

This is our Tribal Environmental Exchange Network (TREX) site, which is a web-based, automated system for collecting, validating, and reporting monitoring data. TREX also allows the public to view close to real-time data by clicking here.

Select the Monitoring Site drop-down menu and find Cams 5 or Cams 6 to view EBCI stations. View hourly averages for all the pollutants and meteorological conditions measured by the TREX at each monitoring site. Select the monitoring site you are interested in from the list below. All data that is collected at that monitoring site will be displayed. Please note that not all parameters are measured at all sites.


EPA Region 4 and Cherokee Making a Visible Difference Story Map

The Environmental Protection Agency’s Making a Visible Difference (MVD) in Communities initiative coordinates technical assistance and other resources to support communities as they pursue environmental improvements that enhance economic opportunity and quality of life.  View the Cherokee Story Map.


World's population breathing unsafe air


Monitoring Stations on Qualla Boundary


Number of chemicals in pollution that age skin


Number of deaths per year from pollution by 2050