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Johnson M.A.,Berkeley Air Monitoring Group Inc. | Chiang R.A.,Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves
Journal of Health Communication | Year: 2015

Achieving World Health Organization air quality targets and aspirational fuel savings targets through clean cooking solutions will require high usage rates of high-performing products and low usage rates of traditional stoves. Catalyzing this shift is challenging as fuel and stove use practices associated with new technologies generally differ from those used with traditional technologies. Accompanying this shift with ventilation improvements can help further reduce exposure to emissions of health damaging pollutants. Behavior change strategies will be central to these efforts to move users to new technologies and minimize exposure to emissions. In this article, the authors show how behavior change can be linked to quantitative guidance on stove usage, household ventilation rates, and performance. The guidance provided here can help behavior change efforts in the household energy sector set and achieve quantitative goals for usage and ventilation rates. Copyright © Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


Johnson M.A.,Berkeley Air Monitoring Group Inc. | Chiang R.A.,Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves
Environmental Health Perspectives | Year: 2015

Background: Displacing the use of polluting and inefficient cookstoves in developing countries is necessary to achieve the potential health and environmental benefits sought through clean cooking solutions. Yet little quantitative context has been provided on how much displacement of traditional technologies is needed to achieve targets for household air pollutant concentrations or fuel savings. Objectives: This paper provides instructive guidance on the usage of cooking technologies required to achieve health and environmental improvements. Methods: We evaluated different scenarios of displacement of traditional stoves with use of higher performing technologies. The air quality and fuel consumption impacts were estimated for these scenarios using a single-zone box model of indoor air quality and ratios of thermal efficiency. Results: Stove performance and usage should be considered together, as lower performing stoves can result in similar or greater benefits than a higher performing stove if the lower performing stove has considerably higher displacement of the baseline stove. Based on the indoor air quality model, there are multiple performance–usage scenarios for achieving modest indoor air quality improvements. To meet World Health Organization guidance levels, however, three-stone fire and basic charcoal stove usage must be nearly eliminated to achieve the particulate matter target (< 1–3 hr/week), and substantially limited to meet the carbon monoxide guideline (< 7–9 hr/week). Conclusions: Moderate health gains may be achieved with various performance–usage scenarios. The greatest benefits are estimated to be achieved by near-complete displacement of traditional stoves with clean technologies, emphasizing the need to shift in the long term to near exclusive use of clean fuels and stoves. The performance–usage scenarios are also provided as a tool to guide technology selection and prioritize behavior change opportunities to maximize impact. © 2015, Public Health Services, US Dept of Health and Human Services. All rights reserved.


Johnson M.,Berkeley Air Monitoring Group Inc. | Lam N.,Berkeley Air Monitoring Group Inc. | Lam N.,University of California at Berkeley | Brant S.,Berkeley Air Monitoring Group Inc. | And 2 more authors.
Atmospheric Environment | Year: 2011

A simple Monte Carlo single-box model is presented as a first approach toward examining the relationship between emissions of pollutants from fuel/cookstove combinations and the resulting indoor air pollution (IAP) concentrations. The model combines stove emission rates with expected distributions of kitchen volumes and air exchange rates in the developing country context to produce a distribution of IAP concentration estimates. The resulting distribution can be used to predict the likelihood that IAP concentrations will meet air quality guidelines, including those recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) for fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and carbon monoxide (CO). The model can also be used in reverse to estimate the probability that specific emission factors will result in meeting air quality guidelines. The modeled distributions of indoor PM2.5 concentration estimated that only 4% of homes using fuelwood in a rocket-style cookstove, even under idealized conditions, would meet the WHO Interim-1 annual PM2.5 guideline of 35 μg m-3. According to the model, the PM2.5 emissions that would be required for even 50% of homes to meet this guideline (0.055 g MJ-delivered-1) are lower than those for an advanced gasifier fan stove, while emissions levels similar to liquefied petroleum gas (0.018 g MJ-delivered-1) would be required for 90% of homes to meet the guideline. Although the predicted distribution of PM concentrations (median = 1320 μg m-3) from inputs for traditional wood stoves was within the range of reported values for India (108-3522 μg m-3), the model likely overestimates IAP concentrations. Direct comparison with simultaneously measured emissions rates and indoor concentrations of CO indicated the model overestimated IAP concentrations resulting from charcoal and kerosene emissions in Kenyan kitchens by 3 and 8 times respectively, although it underestimated the CO concentrations resulting from wood-burning cookstoves in India by approximately one half. The potential overestimation of IAP concentrations is thought to stem from the model's assumption that all stove emissions enter the room and are completely mixed. Future versions of the model may be improved by incorporating these factors into the model, as well as more comprehensive and representative data on stove emissions performance, daily cooking energy requirements, and kitchen characteristics. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.


Summers S.K.,George Washington University | Rainey R.,United States Agency for International Development USAID | Kaur M.,Berkeley Air Monitoring Group Inc. | Graham J.P.,George Washington University
PLoS ONE | Year: 2015

Background: Carbon credits are an increasingly prevalent market-based mechanism used to subsidize household water treatment technologies (HWT). This involves generating credits through the reduction of carbon emissions from boiling water by providing a technology that reduces greenhouse gas emissions linked to climate change. Proponents claim this process delivers health and environmental benefits by providing clean drinking water and reducing greenhouse gases. Selling carbon credits associated with HWT projects requires rigorous monitoring to ensure households are using the HWT and achieving the desired benefits of the device. Critics have suggested that the technologies provide neither the benefits of clean water nor reduced emissions. This study explores the perspectives of carbon credit and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) experts on HWT carbon credit projects. Methods: Thirteen semi-structured, in-depth interviews were conducted with key informants from the WASH and carbon credit development sectors. The interviews explored perceptions of the two groups with respect to the procedures applied in the Gold Standard methodology for trading Voluntary Emission Reduction (VER) credits. Results: Agreement among the WASH and carbon credit experts existed for the concept of suppressed demand and parameters in the baseline water boiling test. Key differences, however, existed. WASH experts' responses highlighted a focus on objectively verifiable data for monitoring carbon projects while carbon credit experts called for contextualizing observed data with the need for flexibility and balancing financial viability with quality assurance. Conclusions: Carbon credit projects have the potential to become an important financing mechanism for clean energy in low- and middle-income countries. Based on this research we recommend that more effort be placed on building consensus on the underlying assumptions for obtaining carbon credits from HWT projects, as well as the approved methods for monitoring correct and consistent use of the HWT technologies in order to support public health impacts.


Chowdhury Z.,San Diego State University | Campanella L.,San Diego State University | Gray C.,Berkeley Air Monitoring Group Inc. | Al Masud A.,Utah State University | And 4 more authors.
Atmospheric Environment | Year: 2013

In the developing world, indoor air pollution (IAP) created from solid fuel used in traditional biomass cook stoves is a leading contributor of poor respiratory health, global burden of disease, and greenhouse pollutant emissions. In the present study, we piloted an experimental cross-sectional monitoring and evaluation design with 30 households in rural Lijiang and Deqin counties in northwest Yunnan province, China. This approach offers the ability to examine the effectiveness of improved cook stove (ICS) programs with a much smaller sample size than the typical population based pre- and post-intervention study that requires a large sample representative of the population. Continuous PM2.5 was measured with the UCB (currently known as UCB-PATS) and the TSI DustTrak and continuous CO was measured with the HOBO CO logger. Using the traditional method of cooking and heating, mean 24-h PM2.5 and CO concentrations in the kitchen were measured in the range of 0.15-0.71 mg m-3 for PM2.5 and 3.0-11 ppm for CO. These concentrations were compared to using a combination of improved stoves in the kitchen where PM2.5 and CO concentrations were measured in the range of 0.08-0.18 mg m-3 for PM2.5 and 0.7-5.5 ppm for CO. These concentrations yielded statistically significant reduction in IAP when replacing the traditional fireplace or traditional stove with an improved stove combination. Finally, we show a strong correlation between CO and PM2.5 (R2 = 0.72-0.76). The combination of this experimental design along with the monitoring and evaluation protocol presented here may provide a robust framework to rapidly assess the effectiveness of ICS interventions in progress. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.


Rosa G.,London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine | Majorin F.,London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine | Boisson S.,London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine | Barstow C.,University of Colorado at Boulder | And 6 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2014

Diarrhoea and respiratory infections remain the biggest killers of children under 5 years in developing countries. We conducted a 5-month household randomised controlled trial among 566 households in rural Rwanda to assess uptake, compliance and impact on environmental exposures of a combined intervention delivering high-performance water filters and improved stoves for free. Compliance was measured monthly by self-report and spot-check observations. Semicontinuous 24-h PM2.5 monitoring of the cooking area was conducted in a random subsample of 121 households to assess household air pollution, while samples of drinking water from all households were collected monthly to assess the levels of thermotolerant coliforms. Adoption was generally high, with most householders reporting the filters as their primary source of drinking water and the intervention stoves as their primary cooking stove. However, some householders continued to drink untreated water and most continued to cook on traditional stoves. The intervention was associated with a 97.5% reduction in mean faecal indicator bacteria (Williams means 0.5 vs. 20.2 TTC/100 mL, p<0.001) and a median reduction of 48% of 24-h PM2.5 concentrations in the cooking area (p = 0.005). Further studies to increase compliance should be undertaken to better inform large-scale interventions. © 2014 Rosa et al.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 999.77K | Year: 2013

Dependence on dirty solid fuels and inefficient stoves for cooking, heating, and lighting by over 3 billion people in developing countries has very large negative effects on health, environment, livelihoods, gender equality, and global climate. To address this problem and fill the unmet need for robust, inexpensive instrumentation for measuring the in-field performance and usage of cookstoves, we are developing the Platform for Integrated Cookstove Assessment (PICA). Current tools for monitoring stove performance and usage, as well as other household-level impacts in the field, are generally expensive and time-intensive, failing to uniformly meet the DOEs requirements of affordability, reliability, durability, and user-friendliness. PICA is a system for managing a suite of tools to collect data at key phases of cookstove development and perform programmatic evaluation and research studies, including parameters such as household air pollution, personal exposure, emissions, and stove usage. Efficient, robust, cost-effective monitoring and evaluation tools such as PICA are critical to development and uptake of clean cooking solutions, the assessment of their impacts, and to support continued global investment in such solutions. Phase I funding was used to create pilot PICA software (the core of the PICA platform). We developed prototypes of the next generation of our UCB-PATS particle monitor, tested the new monitor as well as a commercial CO sensor, and integrated both into the PICA platform. We also used Phase 1 funding to integrate iButton stove use data into PICA and enhance algorithms for processing stove temperature data to yield useful metrics, such as the number of stove uses per day, week, or month. The first objective of Phase II is to fully develop PICAs instrument management and data management and analysis capabilities to create a proficient, comprehensive software system. Secondly, we plan to develop a fully functional, commercial PICA air quality monitor (PATS+). The final objective is to ensure that PICA is well positioned for the next generation of sensors and capabilities through continued research and development of additional sensors for measuring technology usage and energy/pollutant indicators. If the project is carried over into Phase III and beyond, the successful commercialization of PICA will allow an ever greater portion of the cookstove market to access this tool and collect cookstove data and/or track air pollution, especially the many less sophisticated users, developing country agencies, and NGOs. Three to five years from now, our goal is to also have a revenue stream from licensing some of the core technological components of PATS+ and PICA to a consumer products company that will target an entirely new market segment for real-time household air pollution monitoring.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2012

The primary objective of this project is to fill the need for robust, inexpensive instrumentation for measuring the in-field performance of cook stoves by developing the Platform for Integrated Cook stove Assessment (PICA). PICA is envisioned as a system for managing a suite of tools designed to collect stove performance data at key phases of clean stove development and programmatic evaluation. PICA would facilitate integration of data streams for easier collection, management, analysis, and reporting. The project also aims to upgrade and integrate Berkeley Airs current set of instrumentation -- our temperature-based Stove Use Monitoring System (SUMS), stove emissions monitoring system, and UCB Particle and Temperature System (UCB-PATS) -- into the PICA framework to increase their ease-of-use, applicability, and affordability. PICA would also be developed with the aim of compatibility with wireless communication approaches currently under development at UC Berkeley, Portland State University, and elsewhere. Phase 1 of this project has the following specific technical aims: develop a draft blueprint and prototype module of the PICA software; test and integrate prototypes of the UCB-PaCO (particle and carbon monoxide) air quality monitor with a PICA module; update the SUMS for integration with PICA. Phase II would then involve turning the PICA blueprint into a commercial product, with a suite of sensors and tools available under the PICA umbrella. Dependence on dirty solid fuels and inefficient stoves for cooking by over 3 billion people in developing countries has large negative effects on health, livelihoods, gender equality, and global climate. Current tools for monitoring stove performance and usage, as well as other household-level impacts in the field are generally expensive and time-intensive, failing to uniformly meet the DOEs requirements of affordability, reliability, durability, and user-friendliness. Efficient, robust, cost-effective monitoring and evaluation is critical for the development and uptake of clean cooking solutions, the assessment of impacts, and to support continued global investment in such solutions. To address the need for better household energy monitoring tools, we propose the development of the PICA. PICA is envisioned as a system for managing a suite of tools designed to collect stove performance data at key phases of clean stove development and programmatic evaluation. This project will develop a blueprint of the PICA software, update and integrate existing air pollution and stove use sensors into PICA, and then turn the PICA blueprint into a commercial product with a suite of associated sensors and tools. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits If this project is successful and carried over into Phase II and beyond, the public benefits are many. By creating a better, more integrated system for rapid, cost-effective feedback on in-field stove performance, this project will speed the design, production and uptake of clean cook stoves that are usable, highly-desired and provide real, sustained benefits. When clean and efficient cook stoves are used in place of traditional stoves, they have been shown to reduce ill health and save lives, relieve drudgery, improve livelihoods, and have the potential to empower women. Facilitating the direct in-field measurement of stove performance will support cook stoves in reaching their potential for reducing emissions of greenhouse pollutants, thereby contributing to the much-needed stabilization of the global climate that currently threatens the health, prosperity, and sustainability of our future.


PubMed | Health Integrated, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, University of Liverpool, University of Georgia and Berkeley Air Monitoring Group Inc.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Environmental science & technology | Year: 2016

Household air pollution (HAP) contributes to 3.5-4 million annual deaths globally. Recent interventions using improved cookstoves (ICS) to reduce HAP have incorporated temperature sensors as stove use monitors (SUMs) to assess stove use. We deployed SUMs in an effectiveness study of 6 ICSs in 45 Kenyan rural homes. Stove were installed sequentially for 2 weeks and kitchen air monitoring was conducted for 48 h during each 2-week period. We placed SUMs on the ICSs and traditional cookstoves (TCS), and the continuous temperature data were analyzed using an algorithm to examine the number of cooking events, days of exclusive use of ICS, and how stove use patterns affect HAP. Stacking, defined as using both a TCS and an ICS in the same day, occurred on 40% of the study days, and exclusive use of the ICS occurred on 25% of study days. When researchers were not present, ICS use declined, which can have implications for long-term stove adoption in these communities. Continued use of TCSs was also associated with higher HAP levels. SUMs are a valuable tool for characterizing stove use and provide additional information to interpret HAP levels measured during ICS intervention studies.


PubMed | Berkeley Air Monitoring Group Inc.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Environmental health perspectives | Year: 2015

Displacing the use of polluting and inefficient cookstoves in developing countries is necessary to achieve the potential health and environmental benefits sought through clean cooking solutions. Yet little quantitative context has been provided on how much displacement of traditional technologies is needed to achieve targets for household air pollutant concentrations or fuel savings.This paper provides instructive guidance on the usage of cooking technologies required to achieve health and environmental improvements.We evaluated different scenarios of displacement of traditional stoves with use of higher performing technologies. The air quality and fuel consumption impacts were estimated for these scenarios using a single-zone box model of indoor air quality and ratios of thermal efficiency.Stove performance and usage should be considered together, as lower performing stoves can result in similar or greater benefits than a higher performing stove if the lower performing stove has considerably higher displacement of the baseline stove. Based on the indoor air quality model, there are multiple performance-usage scenarios for achieving modest indoor air quality improvements. To meet World Health Organization guidance levels, however, three-stone fire and basic charcoal stove usage must be nearly eliminated to achieve the particulate matter target (< 1-3 hr/week), and substantially limited to meet the carbon monoxide guideline (< 7-9 hr/week).Moderate health gains may be achieved with various performance-usage scenarios. The greatest benefits are estimated to be achieved by near-complete displacement of traditional stoves with clean technologies, emphasizing the need to shift in the long term to near exclusive use of clean fuels and stoves. The performance-usage scenarios are also provided as a tool to guide technology selection and prioritize behavior change opportunities to maximize impact.

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