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Faculty Experts

Peter DeCarlo

Peter DeCarlo, PhD

Associate Professor of Environmental Engineering

College of Engineering

Contact:

peter.f.decarlo@drexel.edu

215.895.2345

DeCarlo heads the Drexel Air Resources Research Laboratory in the College of Engineering and also holds an appointment in the Department of Chemistry. His research focuses on atmospheric air pollution with applications to ambient air quality, including atmospheric aerosols and emissions from anthropogenic activities including natural gas development.

DeCarlo holds a doctorate degree in atmospheric science and has published extensively in the areas of atmospheric aerosols (particulate matter), air quality, and climate. He has performed air quality measurements all over the world and has visited with many Congressional offices to discuss climate change and air quality issues. DeCarlo earned a postdoctoral fellowship at the Paul Scherrer Institute in Switzerland and an AAAS Science Policy Fellowship in Washington D.C.

More information about DeCarlo

Related from the Drexel News Blog 

For news media inquiries, contact Britt Faulstick at bef29@drexel.edu, 215.895.2617 (office) or 215.796.5161 (cell).

In the News

  • Possible Future Uses for PES Refinery Call Into Question Cleanup Plans There

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, was quoted in a July 3 Plan Philly story about plans for the Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery site.

  • PES Refinery Fire and Closure

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, was a guest on the July 2 episode of WHYY's "Radio Times," which focused on the air quality effects of the recent fire at the Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery in South Philadelphia and its subsequent closing. 

  • Officials Say Air Tests from Refinery Fire Showed No Immediate Danger. EPA Data Show Company Has past High-Priority Violations.

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, was quoted in a number of stories on June 21, including The Philadelphia Inquirer, NPR State Impact, Philly Voice, WPVI-TV (6-abc), WCAU-TV (NBC-10) about the air quality effects of an explosion and fire at the Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery in South Philadelphia. He was also interviewed in a WCAU-TV (NBC-10) story on June 22 story that was picked up by a number of NBC affiliates across the country.

  • Experts, Neighbors Worry About Air Quality After Refinery Fires

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering and College of Arts and Sciences, was quoted in a June 20, WCAU-TV (NBC-10) about the South Philadelphia refinery that caught on fire after a series of dramatic explosions Friday morning. It's the region's largest single source of air pollution even when it's not burning.

  • Philly Refinery Fire Under Investigation; Pollution Impact Unclear

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD , an associate professor in the College of Engineering and College of Arts and Sciences, was featured in a June 11  WHYY  story about the health effects resulting from a fire Monday night at the Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery.

  • Philly Refinery Fire Under Investigation; Pollution Impact Unclear

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering and College of Arts and Sciences, was featured in a June 11 Plan Philly story about the health effects resulting from a fire Monday night at the Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery.

  • State Natural Gas Rule Misses Chance To Curb Climate Changing Pollution

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, authored an opinion column for Penn Live on May 6 about proposed state regulations to limit air pollution associated with natural gas extraction.

  • Environmentalists Question Pennsylvania’s New Methane Rule

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, was quoted in an April 10 Associated Press story about proposed legislation in Pennsylvania that focuses on reducing the emission of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from natural gas operations as a way of reigning in the emission of greenhouse gasses, such as methane. The story was picked up by dozens of outlets across the U.S. and Canada, including The Washington Post.

  • Why it's important to curtail methane leaks from natural gas production

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, authored a Dec. 6 opinion piece for the Allentown Morning Call about why it's important to curtail methane leaks from natural gas production.

  • Study: Much More Natural Gas is Leaking Than Government Inventories Suggest

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, was quoted in a June 21 Pittsburgh Post-Gazette story about a new study looking at how much natural gas has been leaking into the environment as the result of fracking.

  • Is Your HVAC System Spreading Thirdhand Smoke?

    A May 30 Buildings.com story featured research by Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering; Michael Waring, PhD, also an associate professor in the College and Anita Avery, PhD, a former doctoral student, about how building ventilation systems can spread third-hand smoke chemicals indoors. DeCarlo was also interviewed during a May 29 segment on Jefferson Public Radio (NPR-Oregon) about the research.

  • 'Third Hand Smoke' Can Leap from Clothes and Surfaces Into the Air You Breathe

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, was interviewed in a CBC Radio (Canada) “Quirks & Quarks” episode on May 12 about his research with Michael Waring, PhD, also an associate professor in the College, and Anita Avery, PhD, who was a doctoral researcher at Drexel, about the persistence of third-hand smoke chemicals indoors. A May 10 BGR story about the research was also picked up by the New York Post on May 11.

  • ‘Thirdhand Smoke’ in Carpets and Furniture Could Pose Health Risk, Scientists Warn

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, was quoted in Mother Nature Network, Yahoo! News and BGRstories on May 10 about his research on third-hand smoke chemicals with Michael Waring, PhD, also an associate professor in the College and Anita Avery, PhD, who was a doctoral researcher at Drexel. A May 9 Washington Post story about the research was picked up by a number of national and regional outlets including MSN.com, CBS News Online, Slate and The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, and internationally by media in Canada, New Zealand, England, Peru, Denmark, China, Israel and India. And NPR’s coverage has aired on many of its affiliates across the country.

  • Thirdhand smoke is widespread and may be dangerous, mounting evidence shows

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, was quoted in several stories on May 9 about research he recently published, with Michael Waring, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, and Anita Avery, PhD, who was a doctoral student in the College, about the persistence of third-hand smoke chemicals inside. Outlets that covered the research include The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, NPR’s “Shots” blog, NBC News Online, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Gizmodo, New Atlas, KYW-TV (CBS-3) and a HealthDay story that was picked up by several publications, including U.S. News & World ReportThe Washington Post’s story was also picked up by the Chicago Tribune, Newsday, The Seattle Times and the Daily Beast.

  • With South Philadelphia Refinery in Bankruptcy Proceedings, Neighbors See an Opportunity for Cleaner Air

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, was quoted in a Jan. 31 Plan Philly story about community groups near the Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery in South Philadelphia pushing for more stringent air quality regulations now that PES has filed for bankruptcy.

  • Infrequently Asked Questions: What's the Difference Between Weather and Climate?

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an assistant professor in the College of Engineering and College of Arts and Sciences, was featured in an April 12 Philly Voice "Infrequently Asked Questions" column about the difference between weather and climate. 

  • Trump or Not, Pa. Coal Plants Have Long Been on the Way Out

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an assistant professor in the College of Engineering and College of Arts and Science, was quoted in a March 28 Philadelphia Inquirer story about the effects of President Trump's rollback on environmental regulations could have on Pennsylvania.

  • Fossil Fuels Foe Calls Proposed Pipelines 'Climate Disasters'

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an assistant professor in the College of Engineering and College of Arts and Sciences, was quoted in a Feb. 20 Roanoke Times story about opposition to two proposed natural gas pipelines in Virginia.

  • Study: Methane Levels Increase As Well Sites Decline

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an associate professor in the College of Engineering, was quoted in a Feb. 9NPR "State Impact" story about his research on the rising levels of methane in the Marcellus Shale region of Pennsylvania.

  • Increased Car Traffic During SEPTA Strike Increased Air Pollution by 400 Percent

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an assistant professor in the College of Engineering and College of Arts and Sciences; and Shannon Capps, PhD, an assistant professor in the College of Engineering, were mentioned in a Nov. 18 WHYY/Newsworks.org story about increased air pollution during the SEPTA strike earlier this month.

  • Health Study Shows Connection Between Asthma Attacks and Gas Drilling

    An air quality study by Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an assistant professor in the College of Engineering, was referenced in a July 18 NPR StateImpact post about new research from Johns Hopkins that links asthma to natural gas extraction in the Marcellus Shale region. 

  • The Clean Power Plan

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an assistant professor in the College of Engineering, and Arthur Frank, MD, PhD, a professor in the School of Public Health, were quoted in an Aug. 3 WHYY radio (91-FM) story about President Obama’s new Clean Power Plan, a policy for reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

  • Airborne Lab Seeks Fracking Leaks

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an assistant professor in the College of Engineering and College of Arts and Sciences, was quoted in a July 6 Philadelphia Inquirer story about an airborne lab measuring methane emissions in the Marcellus Shale natural gas extraction region.

  • Study: Fracking's effect on air quality not as damaging as expected

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an assistant professor in the College of Engineering, was quoted in a May 21 Philly Voice post about his research on air quality in the Marcellus Shale region. 

  • Study: Lower Than Expected Air Pollutants Detected at Marcellus Drilling Sites

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an assistant professor in the College of Engineering and College of Arts and Sciences, was quoted in a May 19 story on NPR’s “StateImpact" blog about his research on air pollution in the Marcellus Shale region of Pennsylvania. 

  • The uncertain state of gas drilling and health

    Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an assistant professor in the College of Engineering, was quoted in a March 2 Philadelphia Inquirer story about the health effects of drilling for natural gas.

  • Marcellus Shale and Air Emissions

    Dr. Peter DeCarlo, assistant professor in the College of Engineering was mentioned in GreenSpace, a Philadelphia Inquirer blog, in a post about air emissions from Marcellus shale operations.

Related Articles

  • third-hand smoke

    'Non-Smoking' Doesn't Mean Smoke-Free — Drexel Study Finds Third-Hand Smoke Spreads Inside

    Despite decades of indoor smoking bans and restrictions, new research from Drexel University suggests the toxins we’ve been trying to keep out are still finding their way into the air inside. Findings by a group of environmental engineers show that third-hand smoke, the chemical residue from cigarette smoke that attaches to anything and anyone in the vicinity of a smoke cloud, can make its way into the air and circulate through buildings where no one is smoking.

  • Peter DeCarlo, PhD, speaks about climate change at a panel discussion.

    At Climate Change Panel, Drexel Faculty Urges Action

    Global warming requires an immediate and aggressive response around the globe, but it’s unclear whether the United States will participate under the new administration, according to a discussion led by Drexel professors. 

  • Marcellus Shale gas tower

    Methane Levels Have Increased in Marcellus Shale Region Despite a Dip in Well Installation

    Despite a slow down in the number of new natural gas wells in the Marcellus Shale region of Northeast Pennsylvania, new research led by Drexel University finds that atmospheric methane levels in the area are still increasing. Measurements of methane and other air pollutants taken three years apart in the rural areas of Pennsylvania that have been the target of natural gas development over the last decade, revealed a substantial increase from 2012 to 2015.

  • Marcellus Shale region

    Drexel Researchers First to Detect Air Quality Effects of Natural Gas Extraction in Pennsylvania's Marcellus Shale Region

    A team led by environmental engineers from Drexel University are the first independent researchers to take a closer look at the air quality effects of natural gas extraction in the Marcellus Shale region of Pennsylvania. The group used a mobile air quality monitoring vehicle to survey regional air quality and pollutant emissions at 13 sites including wells, drilling rigs, compressor stations and processing areas. Their work establishes baseline measurements for this relatively new area of extraction.

  • Three Drexel Faculty Members on Thomson Reuters Highly Cited Researchers List

    Three Drexel University faculty members earned the distinction of being ranked among the most cited researchers in their respective fields according to Thomson Reuters’ “Highly Cited Researchers 2014” list. Gordon Richards, PhD, a professor in theCollege of Arts and Sciences, Yury Gogotsi, PhD, Distinguished University and Trustee Chair professor in the College of Engineering, and Peter DeCarlo, PhD, an assistant professor in the College of Engineering and College of Arts and Sciences, were included on the list of 3,215 distinguished researchers compiled by the international media and information company.