Presenter Information

Riley MillerFollow

Major

Environmental Science

Anticipated Graduation Year

December 2021

Access Type

Open Access

Abstract

Several Midwestern cities, including Chicago, are still in violation of the National Ambient Air Quality Standard for ozone (O3), an air pollutant that has harmful impacts on human health and ecosystems. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) are important precursors of O3 formation. Strenuous effort has been made to cut NOx emissions in the Midwest in the past three decades but O3 levels have not decreased as appreciably. It is therefore pertinent to study VOCs in the Midwest. It is not well understood how VOC concentrations can change in a warmer climate and impact O3. It is possible that this reaction could offset any benefits obtained from reducing NOx emissions. In this study we analyzed how the anthropogenic emissions of VOCs and their relationships to O3 have changed in the Midwest as temperatures become warmer and stagnant weather becomes more frequent.

Faculty Mentors & Instructors

Dr. Ping Jing

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

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Volatile Organic Compounds in the Midwestern U.S.

Several Midwestern cities, including Chicago, are still in violation of the National Ambient Air Quality Standard for ozone (O3), an air pollutant that has harmful impacts on human health and ecosystems. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) are important precursors of O3 formation. Strenuous effort has been made to cut NOx emissions in the Midwest in the past three decades but O3 levels have not decreased as appreciably. It is therefore pertinent to study VOCs in the Midwest. It is not well understood how VOC concentrations can change in a warmer climate and impact O3. It is possible that this reaction could offset any benefits obtained from reducing NOx emissions. In this study we analyzed how the anthropogenic emissions of VOCs and their relationships to O3 have changed in the Midwest as temperatures become warmer and stagnant weather becomes more frequent.