Health and Air Quality Regulation in Developing Countries

Director: Andrew Foster
Research Theme: Environmental Resources and Population Wellbeing
Location: Republic of India

Foster has several projects looking at the relationship between air quality and health. In Delhi, India, he has a project that was initially directed at identifying the effects of a court mandate to enforce vehicle regulations with regard to the use of compressed natural gas (CNG). This study involved the systematic collection of ground data on air quality in combination with a household-level survey that included spirometry-based measures of respiratory health. An outcome of this initial research is that Foster and his coauthor, former S4 director Kumar Naresh, have one of the few systematically collected ground datasets in an urban area of a developing country; most urban air quality data comes from sensors that are placed at particular sentinel sites. These data proved advantageous when they collaborated with Chu at NASA to develop and refine remote-sensed measures of suspended particulates that have subsequently been used, for example, by Foster and a former student to look at health effects of emissions regulation in Mexico.

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