Fine particle (PM2.5) air pollution is a leading risk for mortality, resulting in more than 7% of all human deaths worldwide. Here, we present two analyses that help frame the global air pollution problem. First, using an unusually detailed satellite remote sensing dataset, we show how particle air pollution levels have evolved over the past two decades in every city in the world. Second, we present the case study of Delhi, India the worlds most polluted megacity where we are using detailed measurements to understand the drivers of the citys extremely poor air quality. The seminar will highlight how the challenge of improving global air quality shares many conceptual similarities with the problem of climate change mitigation.
Joshua Apte is an Assistant Professor of Environmental Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin. His research group uses field measurements, mathematical models and large datasets to understand the relationships between air pollution emissions, population exposure, environmental justice and human health. Previously, Dr. Apte was the inaugural ITRI-Rosenfeld Postdoctoral Fellow at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and a Fulbright-Nehru fellow at the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi. He holds a Ph.D. in Energy and Resources from UC Berkeley.