HARC's Alex Cuclis wrote an article, "How expensive is bad science", for The Cynthia & George Mitchell Foundation. Alex elaborates on creating cost-effective ozone control strategies.
Harris County Particulate Matter Inventory
HARC is developing a detailed particulate matter (PM) 2.5 emissions inventory for Harris County, Texas. PM is a type pollution composed of a complex mixture of extremely small particles. The size of particles is linked to their potential for causing health-related problems. PM 2.5 refers to fine particles that pose considerable health risks for respiratory and cardiovascular illness. PM 2.5 is emitted by manmade and natural sources.
The project is lead by Alex Cuclis, Research Scientist in Air Emissions and Monitoring. Alex is working with SC&A and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) 2011 emission inventory to examine emissions activity data specific to Harris County. Using that data, HARC will develop a more accurate inventory of PM 2.5 emissions in Harris County.
This work will be followed by an evaluation of the available PM 2.5 control methods and how much they cost to limit emissions on various sources. HARC’s intent is to develop a database that will, to the degree possible, match PM 2.5 controls with sources, and allow the user to determine the total price to achieve the desired level PM 2.5 emission inventory reductions.
HARC research scientist Alex Cuclis applies his technical expertise to help clean the air in the Houston region and other areas with heavy petrochemical concentrations.
Accurate air pollution monitoring – the focus of much of research scientist Alex Cuclis' work for HARC - is essential to efforts to clean the air in Houston and other locations in Texas.
With $3 million in new federal funding, air quality specialists at the Houston Advanced Research Center (HARC) will refine sophisticated methods they have been developing to help understand and improve air quality.
"The big oil companies told me we shouldn't delay action against manmade climate change."
Some readers of those words, which started Alex Cuclis’s April 28 op-ed column in the Houston Chronicle, may have done a double-take.
In 2015 HARC completed a project that identified the primary sources of fine particulate matter or PM2.5 pollutants in Harris County as well as the control measures that can be used to reduce them. Each control measure has a unique efficiency and cost.
With financial support from the Environmental Defense Fund, Dr. Eduardo (Jay) Olaguer used the HARC microscale air quality model to assess the ozone impacts of oil and gas production facilities in the Eagle Ford Shale.
The oil and gas industry is adopting technologies for cleaner generators and the application of emission controls on diesel engines. Members of the industry are also switching from diesel engines to engines that operate on cleaner natural gas.
The electric system is experiencing rapid growth in the adoption of a mix of distributed renewable and fossil fuel sources, along with increasing amounts of off-grid generation.