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Clarkson University Professor Tapped By National Academy Of Sciences To Study U.s. And China Air Pollution

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Philip K. Hopke, Clarkson University Bayard D. Clarkson Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering, has been appointed by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to participate in a study that will examine urban energy use, policies and associated air-pollution challenges faced today by China and the United States as they pursue their separate, distinct energy and economic pursuits. hopke

NAS will conduct the study in collaboration with the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Chinese Academy of Engineering (CAS/CAE). “The primary goal,” said Hopke, “is to assist Chinese cities in assessing these challenges based on our experiences in the U.S. It includes the dual problems of continued coal consumption and the rapid increase of private vehicles, in the context of economic needs, the environment, and public health.”

The committee will identify options with attendant benefits and costs, including the main technological and institutional opportunities, and will address areas for continued cooperation between the United States and China. Team members will visit two U.S. cities and two Chinese cities having similar energy profiles to gather information on energy use and air-quality impacts. Their final report will provide findings and recommendations for both the Chinese and U.S. governments.

“China’s scientific and engineering communities have been engaged in policy discussions on these issues with the National Academy of Sciences for some time,” said Hopke. “The discussions between the two countries top scientists and researchers have led to a strong, ongoing relationship that encourages dialogue on a number of scientific and policy fronts.”

As a result of discussions held in October 2003 in Beijing the National Academies and the Chinese Academies agreed that the air-quality challenges facing China warrant an in-depth, joint examination of a range of issues facing China, including: the need for improved stationary and vehicular energy technologies, cleaner energy sources, rational energy pricing, efficient regulatory regimes, improved consumer conservation practices, economic incentives to reduce consumption and invest in energy conservation, greater understanding of health implications, and public awareness and education campaigns.

The study is funded in part by the National Research Council, the National Academy of Engineering, and private contributions. Committee members represent leading researchers, consultants, and practitioners in the fields of energy and air pollution. The cooperation between the U.S. and China could also lead to many opportunities for the transfer of technology and services between the two countries.

Clarkson University, located in Potsdam, New York, is an independent university with a reputation for developing innovative leaders in engineering, business and the sciences. Its academically rigorous, collaborative culture involves 2,700 undergraduates and 400 graduate students in hands-on team projects, multidisciplinary research, and real-world challenges. Many faculty members achieve international recognition for their scholarship and research, and teaching is a priority at every level. For more information, visit

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Annie Harrison, Director of Media Relations, at 315-268-6764 or]

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