Causes and effects of air pollution through the lens of technology and engineering design.

Faculty: Applied Science
Subject: Mechanical Engineering
Year / Level: 4
Theme(s): Climate Science; Climate Justice and Social Science



The causes and effects of air pollution in the context of technology and society. Main topics include: Identifying air pollutants and their impact on air quality and climate change, basic atmospheric science and meteorology, introduction to regulation and control, collective societal action, environmental justice, global vs. local considerations, economics of air pollution, technology trends, and the role of engineering design.


At the completion of this course, you should be able to:

  1. Explain fundamental concepts of air pollution (air quality, climate, and health effects)
  2. Identify key air quality and climate change pollutants, their sources, and control technologies
  3. Describe the role of engineering in managing air pollution
  4. Understand the air pollution policy process in Canada, and the basics of international air quality management
  5. Assess the social and economic impacts of air pollution using economic tools (e.g., externalities) or policy-tools (e.g., environmental impact assessment)
  6. Identify examples of sustainable design and development in the context of air pollution
  7. Critically assess potential design trade-offs in terms of air quality, climate, health, and economics
  8. Communicate technical analysis to policy makers and the public in writing (policy briefs) and orally (presentations on grand challenges)


Check SSC to see if the course is currently offered and if you meet pre-requisites etc.

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Read a copy of the course syllabus to see reading lists, assignments, grading, and more.



Naomi Zimmerman

"This course aims to expand perspectives beyond the technical to consider the important role of socioeconomic factors when addressing air and climate pollutant emissions."