Cowtown Redux for “21st Century Air Monitoring” Sept 7th

by Downwinders on August 30, 2017

If you missed our “Science and Socializing” series of roll-out events for the DFW Air Research Consortium in June, you have a chance to catch the show again on Thursday September 7th when the Fort Worth League of Neighborhoods is using its September monthly meeting to host a repeat performance. 

Dr. David Sterling and Graduate Assistant Leslie Allsop of UNT Health Science Center, as well as Downwinders at Risk Director Jim Schermbeck are the featured speakers. 

In just a little over a year, the Air Research Consortium has grown in both size and ambition since being co-founded by Downwinders and local university professors to push the goal of a dense grid of sensors for DFW providing more detailed real time information on air quality than the status quo. At last count, the cities of Dallas, Fort Worth, and Plano had joined, along with UTD, TCU, UNT, UNTHSC, UTA, Liveable Arlington, and Mansfield Gas Awareness.

Although the group’s proposal to the National Science Foundation for funding a grid pilot project next year didn’t get selected over the summer, it did make it to the final round and give the members confidence in the idea. New sources of support for the grid are being explored, and more cities are adopting this more comprehensive approach to monitoring.

Meanwhile, two other Consortium projects are moving forward. 

One is matching ten Particulate Matter and Ozone sensors with as many local public schools in Fort Worth, Dallas. Richardson and Plano. The other is Downwinders’ own Wise County Ozone Project, which commits two ozone monitors to a place no state ozone monitor has ever been.

Building the Consortium’s air monitoring grid has become a major goal of Downwinders because of its potential to give citizens a powerful new tool.  Our on-going job is to figure out how best to integrate this new sensor technology into our traditional community organizing model to get change faster on the ground. We truly believe this new kind of air monitoring can change the way people “see” air pollution and how it impacts their lives.

But don’t take our word for it. Come see the presentation on the 7th and decide for yourself. 

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