EPA Selects Three Universities to Help Find New Uses for Toxics Data

(Released 17 June 2015) Washington, D.C. - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today its selection of academic partners for the 2015 Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) University Challenge, a project designed to increase public awareness and use of data on industrial releases of toxic chemicals in communities. This year’s academic partners are the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, and Mercyhurst University.

“For more than 25 years, the TRI Program has gathered data critical to helping communities make informed decisions about their environment,” said Ann Dunkin, EPA chief information officer. “Through the 2015 TRI University Challenge, we hope to raise awareness of this valuable data among students and professors, and engage them in research that will benefit their communities and further our work to protect human health and the environment.” 

TRI provides communities, government, and non-governmental organizations with information about toxic chemical releases to the air, water, and land, as well as what industries are doing to reduce and prevent these releases. TRI lends itself to a wide variety of uses, including academic research, public policy development, sustainable corporate governance and environmental education.

The 2015 TRI University Challenge follows the successful 2014-2015 challenge, in which EPA selected six academic partners to collaborate on projects related to data visualization and analytics for improving the understanding of TRI data. Three of these projects are ongoing and are expected to finish within the 2015-2016 academic year.

The TRI University Challenge is open to faculty and students affiliated with accredited colleges or universities.

More information on the TRI University Challenge: www.epa.gov/tri/university