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Acetaldehyde in Outdoor Air

Summary Indicator Report Data View Options

Acetaldehyde in Outdoor Air by County, New Jersey, 2019

Why Is This Important?

Acetaldehyde is emitted into the atmosphere through incomplete combustion of gasoline from automotive tailpipe exhaust, and can also be found in smokestack emissions and in smoke produced from fires. In New Jersey's urban areas, emissions are primarily from mobile sources (e.g., cars, trucks, buses) with minor contribution from stationary sources (e.g., fireplaces and wood stoves, forest and wildfires, pulp and paper production, wastewater processing). People exposed to acetaldehyde can experience irritation of the respiratory tract and altered respiratory function. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has concluded that acetaldehyde is a probable human carcinogen.


Mean of modeled annual average acetaldehyde concentration for census tracts in a county

Data Sources

How the Measure is Calculated

Numerator:Modeled mean acetaldehyde concentration in micrograms per cubic meter

How Are We Doing?

All New Jersey counties exceed the health benchmark of 0.45 micrograms of acetaldehyde per cubic meter of air. The highest ambient air concentrations can be found in Bergen, Essex, Hudson, and Sussex Counties. Acetaldehyde air concentrations throughout the state are also influenced by out-of-state emissions from mobile sources.

What Is Being Done?

In the outdoor environment, acetaldehyde is a byproduct of combustion and subject to the general controls on automobile and stationary sources. Industrial facilities that emit this chemical must obtain permits from the NJDEP Air Program and are also subject to state and federal air pollution control technology requirements.

Available Services

To view select air quality data collected at outdoor monitors across the United States, go to: [] Historic New Jersey County Risk Ratio tables can be found at the following URL: []

More Resources

The USEPA Integrated Risk Information System provides more detailed information about acetaldehyde and research studies on its health effects at: [] New Jersey Statewide Average 2005 NATA Modeled Air Concentrations and comparisons to health benchmarks can be found at: [] Pollution Prevention and Community Right to Know: [] NJDEP "What's in My Community?" mapping application: [] On the map you will find every facility with an air permit registered with the Division of Air Quality at the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.

Indicator Data Last Updated On 05/09/2023, Published on 02/07/2024
Environmental Public Health Tracking Project, New Jersey Department of Health, PO Box 369, Trenton, NJ 08625-0369, e-mail: (