For more information about National Park Service air resources, please visit http://www.nature.nps.gov/air/.


Scenic views and native vegetation images from parks within Klamath Network

Studies and Monitoring

Crater Lake National Park

Crater Lake National Park (NP), Oregon, has its own unique environmental concerns based on its particular ecology. Air quality monitoring at Crater Lake NP focuses on visibility conditions and trends. Ecological assessments have evaluated the risk to park resources from the deposition of airborne toxics, and nitrogen and sulfur compounds. Click on the tabs below to review air quality studies and key scientific references at Crater Lake NP, as well as to access information on air quality monitoring in the park.

  • Studies & Projects
  • Monitoring & Data
  • Key References

Ongoing research in Crater Lake NP, Oregon:

Nitrogen & Sulfur Impacts

National assessments rated resources at the park to be at very high risk from the enrichment effects of nitrogen deposition, and at high risk from acidification effects from sulfur and nitrogen deposition. Both enrichment and acidification can cause changes in plant, lake, and stream communities, resulting in a loss of biodiversity (Sullivan et al. 2011a; Sullivan et al. 2011b [pdf, 6.8 MB]; Sullivan et al. 2011c; Sullivan et al. 2011d [pdf, 2.6 MB]).

Airborne Toxic, including Mercury, Impacts

Research findings from the Western Airborne Contaminants Assessment Project indicate the presence of toxic contaminants in park air and vegetation samples (Landers et al. 2010; Landers et al. 2008). Follow-up research is examining the extent to which contaminants are causing abnormalities in reproductive organs in fish at Crater Lake NP and other parks. Additionally, an ongoing study to analyze mercury concentrations in fish from western national parks, including Crater Lake NP, will fill gaps in understanding the extent of mercury contamination and identify potential risks to humans and fish-eating wildlife at Crater Lake (study overview [pdf, 699 KB]). find data»

Air quality monitoring information and data access:

Air Pollutant/Impact

Monitoring Program

Sites and Data Access

Nitrogen & Sulfur NPS Air Quality Inventory
Toxics & Mercury WACAP
Ozone NPS Air Quality Inventory
Visibility IMPROVE

Abbreviations in the above table:

    IMPROVE: Interagency Monitoring of Protected Visual Environments
    NPS: National Park Service
    VIEWS: Visibility Information Exchange Web System
    WACAP: Western Airborne Contaminants Assessment Project

For more information regarding monitoring and data assessments conducted by the National Park Service, link to the NPS Air Quality Monitoring Program or to the NPS Air Quality Monitoring History Database for a history of active and inactive monitoring sites at Crater Lake NP.

Key air quality related references from Crater Lake NP, Oregon:

Eilers, J. M., Rose, C. L., Sullivan, T. J. 1994. Status of Air Quality and Effects of Atmospheric Pollutants on Ecosystems in the Pacific Northwest Region of the National Park Service. NPS Final Report. 255 pp. Crater Lake National Park. Available at http://www.nature.nps.gov/air/Pubs/pdf/reviews/pnw/PNWfinalreport2.pdf (pdf, 1.0 MB).

[IMPROVE] Interagency Monitoring of Protected Visual Environments. 2010. Improve Summary Data. Available at http://vista.cira.colostate.edu/improve/Data/IMPROVE/summary_data.htm.

Landers, D. H., Simonich, S. M., Jaffe, D., Geiser, L., Campbell, D. H., Schwindt, A., Schreck, C., Kent, M., Hafner, W., Taylor, H. E., Hageman, K., Usenko, S., Ackerman, L., Schrlau, J., Rose, N., Blett, T., Erway, M. M. 2010. The Western Airborne Contaminant Assessment Project (WACAP): An Interdisciplinary Evaluation of the Impacts of Airborne Contaminants in Western U.S. National Parks. Environmental Science and Technology 44: 855–859.

Landers, D. H., S. L. Simonich, D. A. Jaffe, L. H. Geiser, D. H. Campbell, A. R. Schwindt, C. B. Schreck, M. L. Kent, W. D. Hafner, H. E. Taylor, K. J. Hageman, S. Usenko, L. K. Ackerman, J. E. Schrlau, N. L. Rose, T. F. Blett, and M. M. Erway. 2008. The Fate, Transport, and Ecological Impacts of Airborne Contaminants in Western National Parks (USA). EPA/600/R—07/138. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development, NHEERL, Western Ecology Division, Corvallis, Oregon. Available at http://www.nature.nps.gov/air/studies/air_toxics/WACAPreport.cfm.

Sullivan, T. J., McDonnell, T. C., McPherson, G. T., Mackey, S. D., Moore, D. 2011a. Evaluation of the sensitivity of inventory and monitoring national parks to nutrient enrichment effects from atmospheric nitrogen deposition: main report. Natural Resource Report NPS/NRPC/ARD/NRR—2011/313. National Park Service, Denver, Colorado. Available at www.nature.nps.gov/air/permits/aris/networks/n-sensitivity.cfm.

Sullivan, T. J., McDonnell, T. C., McPherson, G. T., Mackey, S. D., Moore, D. 2011b. Evaluation of the sensitivity of inventory and monitoring national parks to nutrient enrichment effects from atmospheric nitrogen deposition: Klamath Network (KLMN). Natural Resource Report NPS/NRPC/ARD/NRR—2011/330. National Park Service, Denver, Colorado. Available at http://www.nature.nps.gov/air/Pubs/pdf/n-sensitivity/klmn_n_sensitivity_2011-02.pdf (pdf, 6.8 MB).

Sullivan, T. J., McPherson, G. T., McDonnell, T. C., Mackey, S. D., Moore, D. 2011c. Evaluation of the sensitivity of inventory and monitoring national parks to acidification effects from atmospheric sulfur and nitrogen deposition: main report. Natural Resource Report NPS/NRPC/ARD/NRR—2011/349. National Park Service, Denver, Colorado. Available at http://www.nature.nps.gov/air/permits/aris/networks/acidification-eval.cfm.

Sullivan, T. J., McPherson, G. T., McDonnell, T. C., Mackey, S. D., Moore, D. 2011d. Evaluation of the sensitivity of inventory and monitoring national parks to acidification effects from atmospheric sulfur and nitrogen deposition: Klamath Network (KLMN). Natural Resource Report NPS/NRPC/ARD/NRR—2011/360. National Park Service, Denver, Colorado. Available at http://www.nature.nps.gov/air/Pubs/pdf/acidification/klmn_acidification-eval_2011-05.pdf (pdf, 2.6 MB).


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Pollutants including nitrogen, pesticides, and fine particles affect resources such as surface waters, soils, and scenic vistas. Find out how on our Crater Lake NP Air Pollution Impacts web page.

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Last Updated: November 03, 2011