Earth  ID: 11812

A Tale of Three Cities: Beijing, Los Angeles, Atlanta

In this talk, Dr. Bryan Duncan, tells a tale of air quality in three cities—Beijing, Los Angeles, and Atlanta. Instruments on NASA satellites monitor pollution around the world. One of these, The Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI), on the AURA satellite, has observed large amounts of sulfur dioxide over Beijing, which is released when coal is burned. Similarly, in the 1950s, LA experienced high levels of another air pollutant—ozone—which was sometimes recorded at above 500 ppbv. (The current National Ambient Air Quality Standard is 75 ppbv). With the advent of catalytic converters and other environmental policy efforts that number went way down. But what worked to reduce ozone in Los Angeles didn’t work to reduce high ozone levels in another city—Atlanta. In this talk, Dr. Bryan Duncan, talks about the dynamic nature of air quality, what causes ozone, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide, and why reducing volatile organic carbon pollution worked to reduce ozone in Los Angeles, but not in Atlanta.  

Source Material


Lead Producer:
Alison Schuyler Ogden (NASA/GSFC)

Rob Andreoli (AIMM)
John Caldwell (AIMM)

Project Scientist:
Bryan Duncan (NASA/GSFC)

Technical Support:
Stuart A. Snodgrass (HTSI)
Rich Melnick (HTSI)

Lead Video Editor:
Alison Schuyler Ogden (NASA/GSFC)

Trent L. Schindler (USRA)
Greg Shirah (NASA/GSFC)
Ernie Wright (USRA)
Kel Elkins (USRA)

Please give credit for this item to:
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center

For credits specific to each visualization used in this talk, please refer to the individual visualization pages linked in the Source Material section.

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This item is part of this series:
Narrated Movies

Goddard TV Tape:
G2015-017 -- Air quality with Bryan Duncan

DLESE >> Atmospheric science
DLESE >> Environmental science
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Atmosphere >> Air Quality
NASA Science >> Earth
SVS >> TED Talk

GCMD keywords can be found on the Internet with the following citation: Olsen, L.M., G. Major, K. Shein, J. Scialdone, S. Ritz, T. Stevens, M. Morahan, A. Aleman, R. Vogel, S. Leicester, H. Weir, M. Meaux, S. Grebas, C.Solomon, M. Holland, T. Northcutt, R. A. Restrepo, R. Bilodeau, 2013. NASA/Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) Earth Science Keywords. Version