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University of Iowa News Release

Oct. 24, 2005

UI's Carmichael Is Part Of U.S. Air Quality Delegation To China

Gregory R. Carmichael, professor of chemical and biochemical engineering and associate dean for graduate programs and research in the University of Iowa College of Engineering, will be part of the U.S. delegation attending an environmental conference, "Strategic Approaches to Regional Air Quality Management," Oct. 24-26 in Beijing.

Carmichael, who also serves as co-director of the Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research (CGRER), says that the conference will bring together leading experts with representatives of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and their Chinese and European counterparts in an effort to prepare decision-makers at the local, provincial, and national levels to effectively manage and reduce air pollution.

He says that China faces considerable challenges in addressing urban and regional air pollution. While much of this air pollution is generated within cities, a significant portion is transported from sources in surrounding provinces and regions. The transport of air pollution threatens to undermine the usually extensive and costly efforts undertaken by municipal environmental protection bureaus to reduce air pollution. Not coincidentally, Beijing, which is looking for suggestions designed to improve its air quality, will attract thousands of international visitors when it hosts the 2008 Olympics.

"I am excited by this meeting, as the main environmental decision-makers in China will be there, and the best practices from U.S., European and China perspectives will be shared," Carmichael says. "The regional aspect of air quality management is well-established in Europe and the United States, but is not fully appreciated yet in China."

Carmichael is a veteran Asian pollution researcher having designed a three-dimensional atmospheric chemistry model currently used to track man-made chemicals released into the atmosphere. In 2004, he received $770,000 in NASA and NOAA grants for air pollution studies in addition to a 2002 five-year, $2.3 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to use information technology to develop pollution "weather forecasts."

Recently, he and his UI College of Engineering colleagues were honored with the NASA Group Achievement Award for their contribution to one of the most comprehensive environmental studies of its kind -- the 2004 Intercontinental Chemical Transport Experiment -- North America (INTEX-NA). The North American study used NASA spacecraft, aircraft, and surface sensors to investigate the transport and transformation of gases and aerosols across continents. In addition, the UI team has received a three-year, $750,000 NASA grant to work on the second phase of the project.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

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