About the Research
The focus of our research is understanding the temporal and spatial distribution of greenhouse gases (primarily carbon dioxide and methane) in the atmosphere, and relating these distributions to sources and sinks of these gases.Our research group makes measurements of the concentrations of these gases on towers and uses weather models to relate them to emissions. Atmospheric methods such as these are complementary to the traditional inventory approach, allowing an independent assessment of emissions.
Beginning in 2010, our group has been making measurements of the urban greenhouse gas emissions from the city of Indianapolis. The long-term goal of this project is to support policymakers in their efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. We have also studied agricultural carbon dioxide fluxes in the U.S. Midwest, forest fluxes in the U.S. Southeast, and methane emissions due to unconventional drilling of oil and natural gas in Pennsylvania and Texas/New Mexico.
Through these projects we aim to contribute to answering such questions as:
- What regulations are most effective for cities to reduce their carbon footprint?
- Under what conditions is natural gas preferable to coal in terms of greenhouse gas emissions?
- Are potential hazardous substances co-emitted with oil and natural gas extraction at high enough levels in the atmosphere to cause health concerns?
- What role do managed and unmanaged biological systems play in the carbon cycle?
For more information
- Davis, K.J., A. Deng, T. Lauvaux, N.L. Miles, S.J. Richardson, D.P. Sarmiento, K.R. Gurney, R.M. Hardesty, T.A. Bonin, W.A. Brewer, B.K. Lamb, P.B. Shepson, R.M. Harvey, M.O. Cambaliza, C. Sweeney, J.C. Turnbull, J. Whetstone and A. Karion: The Indianapolis Flux Experiment (INFLUX): A test-bed for anthropogenic greenhouse gas emission measurement and monitoring. Elem. Sci. Anth., 5(21), doi.org/10.1525/elementa.188, 2017.