News & Features

Josh Apte – One of 2019 Grist 50 Fixers

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March 13, 2019

Assistant Professor Josh Apte, an innovator and researcher in the field of sustainable engineering is being recognized as one of the 2019 Grist 50! Fixers.

Grist is an independent news outlet and network of innovators working toward a sustainable planet. Each year this positive publication seeks to honor exceptional leaders working to create solutions for a more sustainable world. This award recognizes technologists, activists, artists, politicians, and storytellers - anyone creating solutions that can be scaled up to help tackle environmental challenges and injustices. Grist brings this unexpected network together to spur conversations and collaborations to work towards a better future.

Apte’s dedication to air pollution research and commitment to improving air quality worldwide has afforded him this award. Air pollution affects the health of billions of people worldwide, yet pollution measurements are limited to much of the world. Apte’s goal is to learn as much as he can about the air we breathe and share it for the betterment of our society.

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Apte’s work involved collecting large amounts of air pollution data using monitors mounted on Google Street View cars. The project set out to measure air pollution concentrations in Oakland, California and Delhi, India, where the data showed that air quality can vary drastically over distances of less than one kilometer. The data collected was then combined with a land use regression-kriging (LUR-K) model to predict air quality at unmapped locations. The scalability of Apte’s approach could address data gaps and have a significant impact on the way research related to air pollution and health is conducted.

Apte received a Ph.D. in energy and resources from the University of California, Berkeley, and has held a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency STAR graduate fellowship and a Fulbright-Nehru Fellowship to the Indian Institute of Technology. In addition, he was a postdoctoral fellow at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and subsequently joined the faculty at The University of Texas at Austin in early 2015.

For more information about Professor Apte’s work, click here.