Riverside has been selected as the new site for the California Air Resources Board (CARB) motor vehicle and engine emissions testing and research facility, a decision that will bring a $366 million facility and more than 400 high-tech jobs to Riverside.
One of the goals of the facility is to be a National and International Center for Air Pollution and Climate Change Research and leverage synergies between CARB’s scientific and technical mission, and the academic and scientific resources of the University of California. In particular, UC Riverside’s Center for Environmental and Engineering Research and Technology (CE-CERT) has contributed important research and technology development in the air quality and clean energy fields.
“UC Riverside provides a lot of opportunities to really meet our mission of providing high value to ARB, the State, and the country,” said CCST Council Member Daniel Sperling, Distinguished Professor of Transportation Engineering and Environmental Policy, and founding Director of the Institute of Transportation Studies at the University of California, Davis and a CARB Board member.
The recommendation will now be considered by California’s Joint Legislative Budget Committee. CARB hopes to break ground on the new facility in 2017 and open in 2020. The new facility will replace a research facility in El Monte which is no longer adequate for CARB’s needs. The Riverside location was chosen over a potential site in nearby Pomona as CARB felt the Riverside location better suited CARB’s long-term research needs.
Over the next few years, CARB and UCR will pursue specific programs to build this research collaboration:
“With CARB moving to the UCR campus, we now have the unique opportunity to create the most preeminent joint air quality research institute, addressing not only fundamental research questions related to air quality and climate change, but also allowing us to test and deploy the latest technology in the real world,” stated Matthew Barth, Director of CE-CERT.
“Since its founding, the University of California has been a great partner to the State of California in providing real solutions to the issues we face as a state and a society,” added UC President Janet Napolitano. “I am so pleased that UC Riverside can now expand its partnership with the Air Resources Board to set the standards that will preserve our air quality for generations to come.”
M. Daniel DeCillis, PhD is the Spotlight editor and a Senior Research Associate at the California Council on Science and Technology.