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Lafayette, La., Project Wins EPA’s Smart City Air Challenge Award

Project is one of only two nationwide winners of $40,000 award to improve community air monitoring

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has selected a Lafayette, Louisiana, project as one of only two nationwide awardees of the Smart City Air Challenge. The challenge encourages communities to install hundreds of air quality sensors and share the data with the public.

“I firmly believe that data can make a positive difference in human health and environmental protection,” said Ann Dunkin, EPA’s Chief Information Officer. “We are looking forward to working with these Smart City Air Challenge awardees and honorable mention communities to share knowledge about collecting, storing and managing large amounts of data.”

The project, administered by the Lafayette Engagement and Research Network (LEaRN), proposes a partnership between collegiate, local government and non-governmental organizations to deploy a network of sensors. The project has a strong data management plan that will use a scalable cloud platform. They plan to use commercially available sensors for the project and share the data with the public in a variety of ways.

EPA evaluated projects on four criteria: data management, data use, sensor procurement and deployment and project sustainability. LEaRN will receive $40,000 to deploy air sensors, share data with the public and develop data management best practices. After a year of implementing the projects, LEaRN will be eligible to receive up to an additional $10,000 based on their accomplishments and collaboration.

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