Real-Time Monitoring and Communication of Levels of Fine Particles, Ozone, and Black Carbon in Northern Manhattan

EPA Grant Number: R829324
Title: Real-Time Monitoring and Communication of Levels of Fine Particles, Ozone, and Black Carbon in Northern Manhattan
Investigators: Kulikowski, Robert R. , Kinney, Patrick L. , Prakash, Swati
Institution: Borough President of Manhattan , Columbia University in the City of New York , West Harlem Environmental Action (WE ACT for Environmental Justice)
EPA Project Officer: Hiscock, Michael
Project Period: October 12, 2001 through October 11, 2005 (Extended to October 11, 2006)
Project Amount: $378,458
RFA: Environmental Monitoring for Public Access and Community Tracking (EMPACT) (2001) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Ecological Indicators/Assessment/Restoration , Environmental Statistics , Water , Ecosystems , Air


The primary objective of this project is to develop and implement real-time monitoring, data management, and public communication of ambient levels of fine particulate matter (PM2.5), ozone, and black carbon (BC) in the Northern Manhattan neighborhoods of Harlem and Washington Heights. These data will be communicated to Northern Manhattan residents in a way that is accessible and understandable, and that can be utilized by residents to reduce their exposures and health risks.


The NY State DEC has developed a statewide monitoring network that includes real-time monitors of fine particles and ozone in or near Northern Manhattan. This project will build on the state's current monitoring network by adding a real-time black carbon monitor to one of its monitoring sites in West Harlem. A communications infrastructure will be developed that will enable residents of Northern Manhattan to access real-time information about ambient levels of fine particles, ozone, and black carbon, to understand the health significance of reported pollution levels, and to be able to take actions to reduce their exposures. Fine particles and ozone are chosen because of their associations with respiratory illness and mortality, while black carbon is chosen as an indicator of diesel exhaust, a significant contributor to air pollution in these Manhattan neighborhoods. Time-relevant data will be made available through a web site, telephone hotline, various media, community educational sessions, health care provider training, and youth training and empowerment.

Expected Results:

Access to real-time information about ambient air quality will enable residents of Northern Manhattan, a highly burdened community with many vulnerable populations, to make decisions about their daily activities that will enable them to protect themselves. The major benefit of this effort will be a community that is able to understand information about ambient air quality and integrate that information into their daily decision-making to reduce potentially risky exposures.

Publications and Presentations:

Publications have been submitted on this project: View all 15 publications for this project

Supplemental Keywords:

ambient air, fine particulate matter, ozone, diesel, elemental carbon, urban, asthma, minority population, children, elderly, New York City, Northeast, monitoring, community-based, mobile sources, youth, transportation, EPA Region 2, RFA, Health, Scientific Discipline, Air, Geographic Area, Ecosystem Protection/Environmental Exposure & Risk, particulate matter, Bioavailability, Health Risk Assessment, air toxics, Environmental Chemistry, Epidemiology, State, Monitoring/Modeling, Disease & Cumulative Effects, Environmental Monitoring, Biochemistry, tropospheric ozone, particulates, health effects, ambient air quality, sensitive populations, urban air, atmospheric measurements, EMPACT, monitoring, PM 2.5, air pollutants, effects assessment, particulate, stratospheric ozone, airway disease, pulmonary disease, ozone, continuous monitoring, ambient air, air pollution, children, carbon black, particles, human exposue, clinical studies, human exposure, sensitive subgroups, ecological risk, urban soot, ambient particulates, Acute health effects, PM2.5, allergic response, measurement methods , atmospheric chemistry

Progress and Final Reports:

  • 2002
  • 2003
  • 2004 Progress Report
  • 2005 Progress Report
  • Final Report