Centre for Air pollution, energy and health Research

An NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence

We are a virtual centre that brings together more than 40 researchers from around Australia and internationally to pursue collaborative research projects and translate our research into practice. Our research aims to understand the health impacts of air pollution and new energy sources.


Our vision is for a healthier community through cleaner air and cleaner energy sources.  

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Reducing the health impacts of wood heaters in Australia

Wood heater smoke significantly contributes to air pollution in Australia, impacting the health of many Australians. 

Current approaches to mitigate the risk that wood heater smoke poses to human health are inadequate. In this new position paper from CAR, several policy options are proposed to help reduce wood heater smoke to protect the health of vulnerable Australians.

Professor Fay Johnston, from the University of Tasmania's Menzies Institute for Medical Research, led the development of the paper and said, "It's time to put in place measures to address the problem."

Read the new position paper

7 September, 2021

International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies

Today is the United Nations' International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies.

This year's theme is "Healthy Air, Healthy Planet".


There is no 'safe' level of air pollution. 

Read our position paper and a research paper led by CAR Chief Investigator, Prof Graeme Zosky. 

Visit Asthma Australia to learn more about air nutrition.

26 July, 2021

Managing airborne infection transmission

CAR Chief Investigator, Professor Lidia Morawska, has written an article for The Conversation that identifies key gaps in the current strategy to reduce the impact of COVID-19. Professor Morawska argues that protection against airborne infection transmission in indoor spaces is a critical consideration for any successful strategy going forward, and presents a roadmap to address this consideration going forward.  

Read article

3 September, 2021

OzSAGE is now live

As Australia grapples with how to reopen following lockdown, CAR Chief Investigators have been involved in the development of an expert online resource.

OzSAGE is designed for governments and business, health, education, community and non-government agencies in Australia. OzSAGE members have expertise in public health, infectious diseases, epidemiology, Aboriginal health, engineering, the built environment, occupational hygiene, behavioural and social science, multicultural engagement, communications, law, data science, public policy and economics. 

Access OzSAGE here  

14 July, 2021

Predicting methane emissions from landfill using machine learning techniques

New research involving CAR affiliates on modelling methane emissions from landfill has been published. Municipal waste produces methane - a potent greenhouse gas - as it decomposes. Machine learning techniques were used to estimate methane generation from landfill following three years of data collection from two pilot landfills. Three intelligent models were used for the first time to predict methane generation, demonstrating the potential for machine learning techniques to predict future methane generation.

Read publication

19 August, 2021

Improving air quality in the classroom

CAR Affiliate, Associate Professor Donna Green, has written an article for The Conversation on the importance of air purifiers with HEPA filters for classrooms to reduce both smoke- and virus-related particles. Because they can remove of 99% of tiny particles, air purifiers are already being used in other parts of the world as a cost-effective strategy to reduce the risk of airborne hazards to schoolchildren. 

Read article

9 July, 2021

The global health burden of hot and cold temperatures

CAR researchers have been involved in modelling the health burden of cold and hot temperatures around the world between 2010-2019 to determine the impact of temperature on death rates. Their study found that a substantial number of deaths - over 5 million annually - can be attributed to extreme temperatures, accounting for almost 10% of all deaths globally. The findings from the study can be used by governments around the world in preparing for weather-related health impacts in a changing climate.  

Read publication

9 August, 2021

The health costs of wood heater smoke in Armidale

Two Chief Investigators of CAR, Prof Fay Johnston and A/Prof Geoff Morgan, have co-authored with colleagues a health impact assessment of wood heaters in Armidale, Sydney. They estimated that wood heater smoke pollution is responsible for 14 premature deaths a year and a cost of $32.8 million. They argue that effective policies are needed to reduce wood heater smoke pollution and their impacts in Armidale.

Read article

9 July, 2021

Associations between ambient particulate air pollution and cognitive function in Indonesian children

Researchers from CAR collaborated with colleagues based at Universitas Indonesia to investigate associations between ambient particulate matter levels in forest fire-prone areas and cognitive function in Indonesia children. Using data from the Indonesian Family and Life Survey, the authors found that children living in a forest fire-prone area for a prolonged period of time negatively impacted cognitive function in children after adjusting for individual factors. Read publication


17 September 2021

September webinar: Dr Arunima Malik

Please join us on 17 September for a webinar from Dr Arunima MalikUniversity of Sydney on supply chain sustainability assessments in Industrial Ecology Virtual Laboratories.

More info

25 June 2021

June webinar: Dr Giovanni Di Virgilio

Watch our recording from 25 June 2021 from Dr Giovanni Di Virgilio, NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment on climate-resilient planning at local scales: from leveraging real-time observations to next-gen climate modelling.

More info

3 September 2021

September webinar: Associate Professor Donna Green and Dr Nathan Cooper

On 3 September 2021, Associate Professor Donna Green and Dr Nathan Cooper, University of New South Wales presented a webinar on an interactive research project to measure indoor and outdoor air pollution in schools.

More info

28 May 2021

May webinar: Professor Xiaowen Zeng

Watch our recording from 28 May 2021 from Professor Xiaowen Zeng of Sun Yat-Sen University, China, discuss air pollution and health effects of schoolchildren in China based on results from the Seven Northeast Cities Study (SNEC).

More info

30 July 2021

July webinar: Nicolás Borchers Arriagada

Watch our recording from 30 July 2021 from Nicolás Borchers Arriagada, PhD candidate at the University of Tasmania's Menzies Institute for Medical Research on the relative health costs of wildfire and prescribed burning smoke in New South Wales.

More info

14 May 2021

May webinar: Professor Mattheos Santamouris

Watch our recording from 14 May 2021 from Professor Mattheos Santamouris, Scientia Distinguished Professor of High-Performance Architecture at UNSW on research developments in the field of urban overheating, its impact on the city life.

More info


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