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In this important podcast, Albert Presto, PhD, Carnegie Mellon University, discusses air quality and emissions, and how chemistry is involved. Dr. Presto earned his PhD in Chemical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University, where he continues to this day, researching and working to understand the ways pollutants affect us.

Dr. Presto and his colleagues turned their attention to pollutant emissions quite some time ago, noting that emissions are increasing in our modern world. Dr. Presto’s important work and research is heavily focused on energy extraction and consumption, and the atmospheric transformations that certain emissions undergo.

Dr. Presto talks about the crucial work of CMU's Center for Atmospheric Particle Studies and their efforts to fully understand how air quality impacts certain environments. He discusses the role of weather and topography in air quality and pollution drift. Dr. Presto explains the dose-response curve and why it is important. A dose–response relationship describes an organism’s specific response in regard to its exposure to a particular stimulus or stressor over time of exposure. Dose–response relationships can be described by dose–response curves.

Dr. Presto talks about the levels of particulate matter that exist, such as within areas of a city that have many restaurants, because cooking can increase emissions. The science researcher goes on to further explain the role of the sun in regard to changing of chemistry, and how it can affect air quality. Wrapping up, the PhD explains a few of the legislative bills
that have been passed to address air quality and increase emissions monitoring.

 

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