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News Releases from Region 04

EPA Provides $2.3 Million to Two Universities in Atlanta to Protect Air Quality in a Changing Climate

Contact Information: 
Dawn Harris Young EPA (harris-young.dawn@epa.gov)
404-562-8421, 404-562-8400

ATLANTA - Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced $8.5 million in research funding to 12 universities to protect air quality from the current and future challenges associated with the impacts of climate change.

Among the grantees, Emory University was selected to receive $ 787,298 for research to develop a concentration-response model to assess health impacts of exposure to PM2.5 and ozone from fires, and to predict the effects of climate change on wildfires, including changes in future exposure to PM2.5 and ozone and public health in the Rocky Mountain Region. The Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta was selected to receive $789,820 for research on an integrated analysis of land use based policies for improving air and water quality with a focus on agricultural reactive nitrogen and wildland fire emissions as climate, land use and an additional $789,261 for research on anthropogenic emissions change and research on the effect of ammonia on organic aerosols in a changing climate.

"The research funded by these grants will improve our understanding of how climate change is impacting our air and our health," said Thomas A. Burke, EPA science advisor and deputy assistant administrator of EPA's Office of Research and Development. "By examining the relationship between air quality and climate change this research will help better protect human health and the environment."

Research has shown that climate change can affect air quality and impact public health. With the funding, researchers will expand investigations to understand:

Health impacts from smoke due to a rise in wildfires that are increasing as a result of climate change;
Atmospheric changes in air pollution chemistry that are occurring due to climate change;
Potential consequences of increased levels of dust from particle pollution on human health and visibility;
Drought and land-use changes in the western U.S. that may impact the incidence of dust storms; and
Impacts to air quality from increased nitrogen-based fertilizer use.

The grants, funded through the agency's Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program, are being awarded to the following institutions:

University of California, Davis, Davis, Calif. for Optimal Energy Portfolios to Sustain Economic Advantage, Achieve GHG Targets and Minimize PM2.5.
University of California, Irvine, Irvine, Calif. for Effects of Ammonia on Secondary Organic Aerosol Formation in a Changing Climate.
University of Colorado, Boulder, Boulder, Colo. for Rethinking the Formation of Secondary Organic Aerosols (SOA) under Changing Climate by Incorporating Mechanistic and Field Constraints.
Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colo. for Planning for an Unknown Future: Incorporating Meteorological Uncertainty into Predictions of the Impact of Fires and Dust on Particulate Matter.
Columbia University, New York, N.Y. for Quantifying Risks from Changing U.S. PM2.5 Distributions Due to Climate Variability and Warming with Large Multi-model Ensembles and High-Resolution Downscaling.
Emory University, Atlanta, Ga. for Wildfires in the Rocky Mountains Region: Current and Future Impacts on PM2.5, Health and Policy.
Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Ga. for Integrated Analysis of Land Use Based Policies for Improving Air and Water Quality: A Focus on Agricultural Reactive Nitrogen and Wildland Fire Emissions as Climate, Land Use and Anthropogenic Emissions Change.
Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Ga. for The Effect of Ammonia on Organic Aerosols in a Changing Climate.
Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass. for Effects of Changes in Climate and Land Use on U.S. Dust and Wildfire Particulate Matter.
University of Maryland, College Park, College Park, Md. for Particulate Matter Prediction and Source Attribution for U.S. Air Quality Management in a Changing World.
University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, N.M. for Evaluating the Timeline of Particulate Matter Exposure from Urban Transportation and Land-Use Greenhouse Gas Mitigation Strategies Using a Novel Modeling Framework.
Washington State University, Pullman, Wash. for Ensemble Analysis of Global Change Projections for U.S. Air Quality Using a Novel Combination of Lagrangian and Gridded Air Quality Models.
University of Wyoming, Laramie, Wyo. for Interplay Between Black and Brown Carbon from Biomass Burning and Climate.

To learn more about these awards, visit: https://cfpub.epa.gov/ncer_abstracts/index.cfm/fuseaction/recipients.display/rfa_id/594/records_per_page/ALL

To learn more about EPA's air research, visit: http://www2.epa.gov/air-research

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