Press Release

New Resources Radio Podcast: Sensing Pollution with Satellites, with Alan Krupnick and Daniel Sullivan

Dec 26, 2018

WASHINGTON, DC—Resources for the Future (RFF) today released a new installment of Resources Radio, a weekly podcast series exploring timely environmental, energy, and natural resources topics.

In today's podcast, Host Daniel Raimi interviews RFF Senior Fellow Alan Krupnick and RFF Fellow Daniel Sullivan about their research on the use of satellite data to improve air pollution monitoring. They discuss the challenge of accurately monitoring air pollution, the societal costs of inaccurate reporting, and their recommendations on how to improve monitoring.

Relevant quotes from today’s podcast:

  • “To withstand scrutiny, you have to have really quality [PM 2.5] monitors. Now those become really expensive and that, I think, is the primary reason why we don't have more monitors.” – Daniel Sullivan (11:40)
  • “It's a really hard problem. If you don't have something like satellite data, how do you know where to put the [air pollution] monitors in the first place?... So, what this research really does is kind of blows the lid off of that by using the satellite data to show where the hotspots actually are and compares that to where the ground-based monitors are.” – Alan Krupnick (12:31)
  • “…Across the country over the two years following the classification, approximately five and a half thousand people died that probably wouldn't have if they had had that improved air quality” – Daniel Sullivan (16:36)

Resources Radio can be found on iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify, and SoundCloud

Resources for the Future (RFF) is an independent, nonprofit research institution in Washington, DC. Its mission is to improve environmental, energy, and natural resource decisions through impartial economic research and policy engagement. RFF is committed to being the most widely trusted source of research insights and policy solutions leading to a healthy environment and a thriving economy.

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Unless otherwise stated, interpretations and conclusions in RFF publications are those of the authors. RFF does not take institutional positions.