As a member of the Ozone Monitoring Methods Team, FFS Research Physical Scientist Shawn Urbanski, Missoula, has been nominated for the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Science Achievement Award for Accurate Ozone Measurements near Wildland Fires. The team was nominated for their work applying and rigorously testing new ozone (O3) measurement methods to identify and mitigate chemical interference experienced with legacy methods when impacted by smoke from wildland fires.
The highly collaborative EPA and USFS Methods Team worked to test four different O3 measurement methodologies during prescribed grassland fires in Kansas and Oregon, and during controlled chamber burns at the USFS Rocky Mountain Research Station Fire Lab in Missoula, Montana. Through this work, the Ozone Team has not only advanced the scientific understanding of ozone measurement methods and wildfire emissions, but also applied this advanced knowledge to non-regulatory programs in support of regulatory use. Their work has broad impact across the Regions, states, and tribes, and significantly contributes to protecting human health while resolving a costly problem with compliance monitoring. This advanced measurement approach paves the way for acquiring accurate real-time ozone measurements in areas impacted by wildland fire smoke. The selection for the award will take place in late spring or early summer of 2021.