Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) Program

2014-15 TRI University Academic Partners

We received outstanding applications from 11 colleges and universities in response to the 2014 Challenge, and we'll be working with six of these academic partners for the 2014-2015 school year.

Descriptions of each of the six project proposals are below. Please note that the expected project outcomes may change once Memorandums of Understanding have been put into place with the newly selected partner schools. As the projects continue throughout the school year, we will provide progress updates and post deliverables on this page.

Drew University – Environmental Studies & Sustainability and Public Health Programs

Primary Researcher
Dr. Lisa Jordan, Director of the Drew University’s Spatial Data Center and Adjunct Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies & Sustainability

Expected Project Outcomes

  • Develop three new GIS tutorials that are based upon TRI data
  • Distribute Introductory GIS tutorials to the public as Open CourseWare on DU’s website
  • Implementation of several team-based TRI-related projects for the Advanced GIS course
  • Develop a new online teaching module, using TRI data, for undergraduate public health students

Southeastern Louisiana University – Computer Science and Industrial Technology (OSHE Program)

Primary Researchers
Dr. Ephraim Massawe, Assistant Professor of Occupational Safety, Health and Environment; Dr. John Burris, Assistant Professor of Computer Science

Expected Project Outcomes

  • Conduct research to determine whether a relationship exists between asthma and other respiratory illnesses, daily weather parameters, and TRI data
  • If a relationship exists, develop mathematical relationships and models to improve understanding of the connection between TRI data and asthma outbreaks
  • Create visualization tools that display outcomes of asthma and other respiratory illnesses using data and functionality from Google maps, CDX, TRI, NOAA, and Louisiana Asthma Coalition

SUNY Plattsburgh - Center for Earth and Environmental Science

Primary Researcher
Dr. Curt Gervich, Assistant Professor of Biology, Center for Earth and Environmental Science

Expected Project Outcomes

  • Continue development of “Toxic Release!”, an eco-educational stakeholder interaction game
  • Improve debriefing that accompanies the game, with a focus on data analytics and visualizations
  • Create a 4-hour community workshop that features both the game and training for EPA’s online TRI tools
  • Collaborate with external environmental education and environmental justice organizations to help disseminate the game

Tennessee State University – Geographic Information Sciences Laboratory

Primary Researcher
Dr. David A. Padgett, Associate Professor of Geography

Expected Project Outcomes

  • Train student team in the use of GIS, GPS, and TRI mapping tools in air quality assessment
  • Develop Bucket Brigade air sampling modules for community stakeholders
  • Lead community stakeholders in Bucket Brigade air sampling and produce maps displaying results
  • Collect stakeholder input on the Bucket Brigade air sample mapping project

University of California, Los Angeles - Institute of the Environment and Sustainability

Primary Researcher
Dr. Magali Delmas, Director of the UCLA Center for Corporate Environmental Performance, Professor of Management

Expected Project Outcomes

  • Issue evaluative ratings of environmental performance of TRI facilities in the Greater Los Angeles Area
  • Lead a workshop with manufacturers to discuss ratings and identify opportunities to reduce toxic chemical releases
  • Use RY 2013 TRI data to develop and update maps and graphs displaying comparative TRI facility performance on a variety of factors

University of South Carolina – Department of Geography

Primary Researcher
Dr. Diansheng Guo, Associate Professor, Department of Geography

Expected Project Outcomes

  • Estimate exposure surfaces for different chemicals from TRI point sources
  • Map multiple exposures across space and time
  • Identify population at risk to certain combinations or levels of toxics
  • Link derived data with public health data to create visualizations that display potential correlations, spatially and temporally