News and events
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Predicting methane emissions from landfill using machine learning techniques
14 July, 2021
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.
The global health burden of hot and cold temperatures
9 July, 2021
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.
A paradigm shift to combat indoor respiratory infection
14 May, 2021
A new article led by CAR researchers has been published in the prestigious journal, Science. The article calls for a paradigm shift in the way that we manage respiratory infections. Importantly, formal recognition that infections often occur through airborne transmission has significant implications for the way we think about indoor spaces and design buildings. Creating flexible ventilation systems in buildings that can maintain airborne infection risks at acceptable levels is critical. The authors present several recommendations for a practical path forward.
How effective are HEPA cleaners during smoke events?
20 April, 2021
CAR researchers recently assessed the effectiveness of portable high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) cleaners during a prolonged smoke event. HEPA cleaners were installed in the main library in Port Macquarie between August and October 2019. The library contained substantially better air quality compared with outdoor air quality when HEPA cleaners were operating.
Links between exposure to air pollution and sensitivity to allergens in children
14 April, 2021
CAR researchers investigated links between exposure to air pollution and sensitivity to common allergens in children. They found that increasing exposure to nitrogen dioxide was associated with greater sensitisation to house dust mites. This is the first national study to evaluate associations between nitrogen dioxide and children's sensitivity to allergies.
Air quality thresholds do not adequately protect Australians
8 March, 2021
According to CAR researchers the current mechanism for setting air quality thresholds in Australia does not adequately protect community health. The standards provides only partial health protection and adversely impacts community perceptions by implying that the current standards represent a ‘safe’ level of exposure.
The Role of Traffic-Related Air Pollution on Neurodegenerative Diseases in Older People
15 February, 2021
CAR researchers have conducted a review on the role that traffic-related air pollution may play in neurodegenerative diseases, such as dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease. Current research has provided mixed findings and longer-term studies are needed to confirm the levels of risk and other contributing environmental factors. Better understanding of these relationships will help inform the development of preventive measures and reduce chronic cognitive and physical health burdens (cost, quality of life) at personal and societal levels.