Center Formed to Study Complex Airborne Pollutants

The National Environmental Respiratory Center (NERC) has been formed to help study the effects of complex pollutant mixtures in the air. Located at the Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute in Albuquerque, the NERC is the result of a partnership between the U.S. government and some of the largest U.S. companies. Ford Motor Co., Exxon Mobil Corp., and groups including the American Trucking Assn. and the California Trucking Assn. are partners in the program. In a 1998 directive the U.S. Congress designated NERC in the EPA budget, reflecting frustration over the large scientific uncertainties revealed during debate of the recent new standards for ozone and airborne particles. The first group of complex pollutant atmospheres to be studied over the next few years include: engine and power plant emissions, wood and tobacco smoke, cooking fumes, and road dust. For more information visit the NERC Web site where 21,000 papers on pollutants are posted.

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