In northcentral China (Shanxi province), the Carter research group conducted a multi-season field campaign to measure indoor, outdoor, and personal air quality in rural homes. The project is characterizing the chemical composition and sources contributing to these measures of air pollution. The detailed chemical and source composition data the measurements add are shedding new light on the spatial and temporal (daily and seasonal) scales of local air pollution sources.

24-h Air Pollution Measurements

In Beijing, policymakers are intent on transitioning all households in the rural municipality region to clean space heating, which entails the elimination of coal as a primary heating fuel among 3-5 million rural households. The current policy being implemented at a village-level in Beijing heavily subsidizes electric- powered heat pump technology to fully replace coal (which is simultaneously banned as villages receive subsidies).

The research group is leading a multi-year evaluation of impacts of this policy on community and personal air pollution as well as several indicators of indoor environmental quality.

Additionally, the group also recently completed a case study of biomass pellets and briquettes as a household fuel in China. Specifically, we sought to answer the following question: from the perspective of industry and community stakeholders, what factors are important for the development of processed biomass fuels for direct use in Chinese households?

Proportion of Rural Population

To address this question, the project investigated regional perspectives on technological and financial factors associated with production of processed biomass pellet fuel in China. Interviews were conducted with stakeholders and sector experts in three provinces (Heilongjiang, Jilin, and Sichuan) where production of processed biomass fuel for household use is being pursued. The information gathered was synthesized with relevant, publicly available Chinese production records, peer-reviewed studies, and policy documents to inform further investment and scientific research on this topic.