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Air Quality Impact of Ship Emissions in South Florida

Grant Winners

  • Song Gao, Ph.D. – Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences
  • Karem Molinares, BS – Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences
  • Arti Patel, BS – Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences


  • Don Rosenblum, Ph.D. – Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences


Award Winners

The project aims to evaluate how ship emissions in Port Miami and Port Everglades may impact the air quality in local communities in South Florida. Marine vessels emit large quantities of pollutants such as aerosols, SO2, NOx, CO and CO2, while also potentially forming ground-level ozone smog. As the cruise capital of the world that continues to grow in capacity, how this pollution source affects air quality and public health deserves a careful investigation. Ship docking patterns and counts will be tabulated from databases available from the ports, so will the pollutant levels available from government agency databases. After background corrections, these values will be examined for correlations using statistical tools such as principal component analysis. Coupled with careful meteorological analysis using trajectory and wind rose methods, the frequencies and extents of ship emissions directly impacting local sites will be evaluated. In addition, other pollution sources such as wildfires will also be assessed in their air quality impacts. Of the various pollutants, aerosols are of particular concern due to their abilities to cause serious ailments. Through field sampling followed by chemical analyses, inorganic and organic components from ship-emitted aerosols will be quantified and assessed for their potential roles in affecting air quality and public health.

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