Haagen-Smit Clean Air AwardsHonoring Air Quality Achievements
This page last reviewed June 24, 2014
Congratulations to the 2013 Clean Air Award Winners!
The 2013 Annual Haagen-Smit Clean Air Awards were presented in Sacramento, California on April 24, 2014.
The 2013 award recipients are:
- Dr. Barbara Finlayson-Pitts of the University of California, Irvine
- Dr. James Lents of the International Sustainable Systems Research Center
- Mr. Teruyuki Ohno of the Japan Renewable Energy Foundation
Watch the video recording of the ceremony:
Beginning in 2001, the Air Resources Board (ARB) annually recognizes and honors outstanding individuals who have made significant contributions toward improving air quality through their lifetime commitment, perseverance, leadership, and innovation in the areas of research, environmental policy, science technology, public education, promotion of best practices in developing countries, or community service. Scientists, professors, legislators, activists, business leaders, and other esteemed persons in the air quality community have been previous winners. Learn more about the past winners.
Who is Dr. Haagen-Smit?
The prestigious award program was named after Dr. Arie
J. Haagen-Smit, a native of Utrecht in the Netherlands, who was a
leader in developing air quality standards based on
his research efforts. Dr. Haagen-Smit, known by many as the "father" of
air pollution control, was a graduate of the University of Utrecht and
a biochemistry professor at the California Institute of Technology in
Pasadena for 16 years before beginning his air pollution research in
1948. Through a series of
experiments, he found that most of California's smog resulted from
photochemistry (when exhaust from motor vehicles and industrial
facilities react with sunlight to create ozone). This breakthrough is
the foundation upon which today's nationwide air pollution standards
are based. After serving for eight years as an original board member of
ARB's predecessor, the Motor Vehicle Pollution Control Board,
Dr. Haagen-Smit became ARB's first chairman in 1968. In 1977,
he died of lung
cancer two months after the ARB laboratory in El Monte was dedicated in
Dr. Haagen-Smit has been honored with another award program administered by Atmospheric Environment, a publication of original air pollution research and its applications. See more information on the Atmospheric Environment Haagen-Smit Prize and recent winners.
Review information about the 2008 Annual Haagen-Smit Symposium
which focused on the role of land use and transportation in meeting AB
32 requirements and achieving California’s vision of a low-carbon future.
For more information on Dr. Haagen-Smit visit these links:
- Dr. Arie J. Haagen-Smit on Wikipedia
- The National Academy of Sciences Biographical Memoirs of Dr. Haagen-Smit
- A Lesson from the Smog Capital of the World by A.J. Haagen-Smit (October 1970)
- Arie Jan Haagen-Smit by James N. Pitts, Jr. and Edgar R. Stephens (published in the Journal of the Air Pollution Control Association, Volume 28 1978)
- I can see more clearly now article about John Seinfeld (2003 Clean Air Award winner) that includes photos and background with Arie Haagen-Smit in Caltech's Engineering & Science Magazine, 2012.
For more information on ARB's Clean Air Awards, contact Heather Choi at (916) 322-3893.
Photos Courtesy of the Archives, California Institute of Technology