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DRI Affiliate Research Professor wins Excellence in Air Pollution Control Award

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 31, 2013

Dr. Junji CaoDr. Junji Cao(RENO): The Air & Waste Management Association has awarded Junji Cao, Ph.D., a DRI Affiliate Research Professor and current President of the Institute of Earth Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences (IEECAS), with the Frank A. Chambers Excellence in Air Pollution Control Award.  Dr. Cao performed part of his graduate research at DRI in 1999.

Dr. Cao earned the recognition for his contributions in the area of air pollution control technology research and development. He has more than 20 years of experience conducting air quality studies. Dr. Cao was a founder of the Key Laboratory of Aerosol Science & Technology at IEECAS, where he leads a group in conducting ambient and source characterization studies, laboratory filter processing, chemical speciation, and data validation, as well as quality assurance/quality control.

Dr. Cao has conducted numerous air quality studies in China, where he has made major contributions as well as offered advice to local and central government agencies on air quality improvement strategies.  He is the principal author or co-author of more than 160 peer-reviewed publications and is one of the top 1,000 highly-cited scientists in geosciences in the world by Thomson Reuters (formerly ISI) Web of Knowledge.

A major accomplishment for Dr. Cao, in cooperation with others, was providing a technical basis for the recent adoption of a nationwide PM2.5 Chinese National Ambient Air Quality Standard.  PM2.5 (particles of less than 2.5 microns in diameter) has been regulated in the United States since 1997.  His leadership on the joint panel of the U.S. and Chinese National Academies of Engineering resulted in the highly influential report, “Energy Futures and Urban Air Pollution Challenges for China and the United States.” 

In 2009, Dr. Cao established A&WMA’s China Section, which serves as a forum for knowledge exchange among industry, regulators, and scientists in China.

“Chinese and other Asian cities are among the most polluted in the world, and leadership in air quality management and emissions control is shifting to these areas,” said Cao’s former advisor and air-quality expert Dr. Judith Chow of the Desert Research Institute. “Dr. Cao is the embodiment of a new generation of young professionals who are leading the way in transferring pollution control strategies that are already proven and leapfrogging ahead of older technologies to advance the science and art of air pollution control.”

This prestigious honor, established in 1954, is awarded for outstanding achievements by an individual in the science and art of air pollution control. It requires accomplishment of a technical nature on the part of the recipient that is considered to be a major contribution to the science and art of air pollution control, the merit of which has been widely recognized by colleagues in the field.

Frank A. Chambers (1885-1951) was a founder of the Smoke Prevention Association of America and played a very significant role in establishing the Air & Waste Management Association. His ideas have been put into operation in many cities in the United States.

About A&WMA: The Air & Waste Management Association (A&WMA) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan professional organization that provides training, information, and networking opportunities to environmental professionals. A&WMA’s core purpose is to improve environmental knowledge and decisions by providing a neutral forum for exchanging information. The Association’s goals are to strengthen the environmental profession, expand scientific and technological responses to environmental concerns, and assist professionals in critical environmental decision-making to benefit society.


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Note to Reporters and Editors: DRI, the nonprofit research campus of the Nevada System of Higher Education, strives to be the world leader in environmental sciences through the application of knowledge and technologies to improve people’s lives throughout Nevada and the world.

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