ARL Weekly News – May 24, 2019

Rick Saylor served as a member of the Community Multiscale Air Quality (CMAQ) version 5.3 model Review Panel which took place May 21-23 at the U. S. EPA National Exposure Research Laboratory (NERL) in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. The Computational Exposure Division (CED) of NERL is responsible for maintaining and improving CMAQ and is currently preparing to release the latest version of the air quality modeling system, including updates to emissions processing, chemical and aerosol processes, land-use specific deposition and integrated source apportionment post analyses. The National Weather Service’s (NWS) National Air Quality Forecasting Capability (NAQFC) uses CMAQ to produce forecasts for ozone and PM2.5 for the U. S. and ARL works closely with NWS to transition updates of the model to NAQFC to provide continually improving forecast performance.

Xinrong Ren is co-author of a paper entitled, ” Estimating methane emissions from underground coal and natural gas production in southwestern Pennsylvania,” that was recently published in Geophysical Research Letters ( An inverse model coupled with aircraft measurements was used to examine CH4 (Methane) emissions from coal and natural gas production in southwestern Pennsylvania. The paper concludes that while Environmental Protection Agency inventories appear to report emissions from coal accurately, emissions from unconventional natural gas are underreported in the region by a factor of 5 (±3).