Calvin is an Earth and Environmental Science major in his senior year, while working as the full time Citizen Science Coordinator for Clean Air Carolina, a Charlotte-based group advocating for clean, healthy air for all North Carolinians. He is running the Air Keeper program at Clean Air Carolina. With my science background, I work with CAC on air quality measurement/monitoring projects using low-cost instrument networks. Calvin and I have very similar interests with these low-cost devices, and he started working with me in Summer 2016, and then more formally for Independent Study course credit in Fall 2016. Calvin actually helped collect data near Lake Lure when western Carolina had horrible fire smoke pouring into Charlotte, and he even saturated my ground-based instrument with smoky air. He got the data though! We continue to work together on grassroots projects related to understanding air quality and air quality data.
As a part of Clean Air Carolina, Calvin has been instrumental (pun intended) in designing a way to monitor particulate matter pollution in and around North Carolina. He and I started this effort in Mecklenburg County, and the idea has snowballed into a statewide effort. The amount of work required to move this forward is pretty amazing, and Calvin is now balancing those technical logistics against the very public-facing work he is doing with school groups, communities, and stakeholders all around the state relative to Clean Air Carolina mission goals. He regularly speaks with large groups, and goes to science/tech conferences to network amongst other efforts around the country that might compliment CAC efforts. Luckily, he and I still get to talk about the technical logistics quite a bit too. Check out the Air Keepers program at Clean Air Carolina to see the particulate matter sensor network!
In the meantime, keep watch on your air and let us know if you want to participate or help us out. We also have a ton of data to analyze, so stay tuned.