air pollution

Spring 2017 Undergraduate Research Assistant Opportunities

Undergraduates from Columbia and Barnard will be able to serve as research assistants on research projects related to sustainable development and the environment with distinguished faculty and researchers at the cutting edge of this burgeoning field.

by |December 28, 2016
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2015 Indonesia Fires Killed 100,000 People, Says Study

In fall 2015, smoke from agricultural fires in Indonesia blanketed much of equatorial Asia. Schools and businesses closed, planes were grounded and tens of thousands of people sought treatment for respiratory illnesses. In a new study, researchers estimate that the smoke caused upward of 100,000 deaths across Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore.

by |September 19, 2016

By the Numbers: Air Quality and Pollution in New York City

New York City is known for many things, but having clean air isn’t one of them. Explore some of the issues and challenges the Big Apple faces in clearing NYC’s air through interactive maps and data.

The False Trade-Off Between Economic Growth and Environmental Protection

The investment in environmental clean-up often stimulates other upgrades that enable businesses to more effectively compete in a global economy. Moreover, a clean environment reduces illness and that reduces the need for expensive health care.

by |May 23, 2016
A major impediment to stricter pollution regulation in China is the fear of slowing down the economy. Photo: Nicolò Lazzati / Flickr

Does Pollution Regulation Kill Jobs? Lessons for China from the U.S.

The problem of air pollution in China continues to reach new heights. To combat the problem in any real way stringent regulation is needed. A new paper from Columbia University’s Earth Institute finds that this can be done without hurting job creation.

by |April 6, 2016
The melting toe of the Athabasca Glacier in Canada Photo: Wing-Chi Poon

The Damaging Effects of Black Carbon

Air pollution, both outdoors and indoors, causes millions of premature deaths each year. The deaths are mainly caused by the inhalation of particulate matter, especially black carbon. But black carbon not only has impacts on human health, it also affects visibility, harms ecosystems, reduces agricultural productivity and exacerbates global warming.

by |March 22, 2016
Map showing exposure to fine-particulate matter from 1999-2011

The Changing Face of Air Quality

Looking at regional differences in PM2.5 concentrations gives us a sense of the changing face of air quality throughout the world.

Photo: Marcus Oh

Is City Biking Hazardous to Your Health?

As more and more people take to biking in the city, a new study will look at how much pollution bikers are exposed to, and what effects it might be having on their health.

by |June 16, 2015
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Bad Ozone Days in Western U.S. Linked to Pacific Weather

A new study shows that ozone pollution in the western United States can be increased by La Niña, a natural weather cycle at the surface of the Pacific Ocean. The finding is the first to show that the La Nina-El Nino cycles directly affects pollution.

by |May 12, 2015
Photo: Asian Development Bank

The Greening of China

China became the world’s largest carbon polluter in 2006, surpassing the U.S. But it is also rapidly going green through cutting coal use, investing heavily in renewable energy and launching the world’s largest carbon trading system.

by |November 8, 2014