News and events

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Catastrophic fire danger: Using the AirRater app.

11 Nov 2019

On Tuesday 12 November 2019, as fire conditions continue to deteriorate in NSW, a catastrophic fire danger has been issued for greater Sydney, greater Hunter and Illawarra/Shoalhaven regions. 

A/Prof Fay Johnston, chief investigator of CAR, leads a team working on the AirRater project.  AirRater is a computer based application that provides public health support by monitoring air pollution levels. AirRater has recently been made available in Port Macquarie area. By using AirRater, it can allow the public to be better prepared and know when to take action to protect their health from the effects of the smoke. More information about the Port Macquarie AirRater project is available here.

Public health emergency in New Delhi, India

05 Nov 2019

Officials in India's capital, New Delhi, have declared a public health emergency due to the severe air pollution. 

Prof Guy Marks, Chief Investigator of CAR comments..."I have witnessed, first hand, the dreadful air pollution event affecting Delhi at the moment. Air pollution is the greatest environmental threat to human health. It is estimated that there were 4.9 million deaths globally that were attribute to air pollution in 2017, 1.24 million of these deaths were in India. It is a global emergency that we need to tackle. It causes illness and death due to heart attacks, strokes, pneumonia, asthma and other lung disease, and, in the longer term, cancer.  The solution requires multi-sectoral approaches involving governments, the private sector and individuals. 

 

The causes of air pollution are complex. Some people are saying that the current crisis in Delhi is due to agricultural burning of crop residues in a neighbouring state. However, industrial pollution, traffic (motor vehicle), and domestic burning for cooking and incineration also play a role. In other settings, such as Indonesia and Brazil, burning for land clearing is a major cause or air pollution. In each setting, we need research to better identify the main causes or sources of air pollution and then we need policy and enforcement to mitigate those sources. Without action, the global emergency will continue unabated."

Here is what other experts have said.

Congratulations to Prof Guy Marks as the new President-Elect of The International Union Against Tuberculosis

30 Sep 2019

Congratulations to Prof Guy Marks on being the new President-Elect of The International Union Against Tuberculosis, taking over from the current President at this year’s Union World Conference in Hyderabad.

Dr Andrea Hinwood and A/Prof Fay Johnston awarded for their work in air pollution.

16 Sep 2019

The Clean Air Society of Australia and NZ has awarded A/Prof Fay Johnston the Air Quality Champion 2019 Award for Excellence and innovation for her work on smoke pollution and developing the AirRater app.

Dr Andrea Hinwood was also honoured by CASANZ as joint recipient of the Air Quality Medal

Congratulations to both Fay and Andrea!

Fay Johnston from CAR awarded the prestigious 2019 Tony McMichael Ecology & Environment Award

19 Sep 2019

Fay Johnston from CAR and the University of Tasmania has been awarded the 2019 Tony McMichael Ecology & Environment Award. She has been recognised for her work on air pollution and climate change.

Climate change, extreme wildfires and air pollution

03 Oct 2019

Two topics will be discussed: (1) Prescribed burns - how do they impact air quality. The timing of prescribed burns and key meteorological factors will be discussed; and (2) The use of high-resolution climate modelling to identify how future changes in atmospheric instability and dryness increase the potential for extreme wildfires.

CAR Seminar Series: Uncertainty framing, how to publish interesting but inconclusive results...

12 Sep 2019

Scientists address uncertainty not only in how they perform analyses, but also in how they write about their results. This seminar discusses the many ways in which scientists describe how uncertainty affects interpretation of their conclusions, and how this makes inconclusive results publishable. In addition to an analysis of abstracts in the water sector, a controversy in air pollution is used as an example to spark debate and encourage critique and improvement of current practice.

CAR-CASANZ joint webinar: Air pollution mitigation using passive techniques in the built environment

15 Sep 2019

Join Asst. Prof John Gallagher from Trinity College Dublin, Ireland, CASANZ and CAR for this special seminar on air pollution mitigation using passive techniques in the built environment.

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