|Dr. Allen S. Lefohn, President and Founder of A.S.L. & Associates, received his Ph.D. in physical chemistry from the University of California at Berkeley. He received his Ph.D. under Professor George C. Pimentel, who was a great scientist and a great mentor. Dr. Pimentel encouraged his students to look beyond the obvious. In the spring, summer, and fall, Dr. Lefohn both runs and cycles. In the winter and spring, he is an avid skier - both alpine and cross country. When time permits, he is active on the amateur radio frequency (ham) bands with the call letters KA7M.|
Over the past 47 years, Dr. Lefohn's research has involved many areas such as the evaluation and assessment of ambient air quality standards, reference levels, and critical levels for several national and international governments; the assessment of adjustment procedure (i.e., rollback) models for developing alternative scenarios for the United States and Canadian air pollution rulemaking processes; the analysis of air quality data for developing exposure-response mathematical relationships for assessing the effects of air pollutants on vegetation; the development of exposure/dose-response relationships describing the effects of ozone and sulfur dioxide on vegetation; the evaluation of the statistical methodology associated with epidemiological studies relating air pollution to human health effects; the evaluation of alternative forms and levels of human-health standards; the development of hourly exposure regimes for controlled human health laboratory studies; the development and application of spatial interpolation techniques for estimating seasonal ozone cumulative exposures; the characterization of European and North American air quality and wet deposition data for the purpose of assessing possible reasons for forest decline; the development of field surveys to assess the effects of sulfur dioxide on agricultural crops; and the analysis of acidic deposition wetfall and effects data to better assess the potential for biological effects.
Dr. Lefohn has focused his research efforts on understanding (1) the quantification and relationship between pollutant exposure and naturally occurring processes and (2) the possible effects of air pollutants on human health and on the ecosystem. He has extensive international experience in the evaluation and assessment of ambient air quality standards, air quality objectives, and critical levels. Some of his most recent activities involve developing a mathematical relationship between ozone exposure and dose and their effects on vegetation, better understanding the variability of natural background ozone levels, designing the ambient-like ozone exposure regimes for the major controlled laboratory human health experiments (i.e., FEV1 experiments) currently being used in the standard-setting process by US EPA, developing rollback models for assessing alternative scenarios for the United States and Canadian air pollution rulemaking processes, developing the scientific rationale for explaining the "piston" effect, which affects the ability to attain the 8-hour ozone standard, and evaluating the possible effects of surface ozone on trees in the southern Appalachian Mountains. In addition, he has focused his attention on particulate matter and the strengths and weaknesses of the current scientific database. Several of his papers reprresent important contributions to the research literature. In the 1980s and 1990s, Dr. Lefohn published many papers associated with characterizing ozone and other air pollutants, as well as the importance of peak concentrations and their effects on vegetation. The W126 exposure index, which is currently being considered as the US Federal vegetation standard, was described in his papers in the late 1980s. In 1999, a paper that summarizes the results of his effort in directing an international research team to develop and apply a protocol for assessing global estimates of sulfur emissions from 1850 to 1990 was published in Atmospheric Environment. In December 1999, the sulfur emissions work was featured on the Voice of America. The sulfur emission estimates associated with this work are used today in global change models. In January 2000, Dr. Lefohn and his co-authors published a paper in Atmospheric Environment relating ozone flux measurements with ozone concentrations and the development of a possible ozone standard to protect vegetation. In May 2001, Dr. Lefohn and his co-authors published an important paper discussing background ozone and the importance of natural processes in the Journal of Geophysical Research. In the early 2000s, his papers focused on surface ozone trands at remote monitoring sites across the world and a critical review of exposure- and dose-based indices for assessing ozone vegetation effects. In 2007, Dr. Lefohn's paper with Dr. Milan Hazucha of the University of North Carolina described results from controlled laboratory exposures of human volunteers that indicate that higher ozone hourly average concentrations elicit a greater effect on hour-by-hour physiologic response than lower hourly average values, which implies a nonlinear dose-response relationship. As indicated in the paper, the current 8-h average human health ozone standard is not adequate for describing this nonlinear hour-by-hour pattern of response. In 2008, Dr. Lefohn's papers focused on policy-relevant background ozone levels entering the west coast of the United States and characterizing long-term changes in surface ozone levels in the United States. In 2009, Dr. Lefohn and his colleagues published an important paper explaining the biological reasons for the nonlinear relationship between vegetation responses to ozone and exposure and dose. The paper describes how uptake of ozone into the plant, ozone exposures, and defense processes relate temporally to one another. The three processes are more than likely out of phase with one another. It is the out-of-phase relationship that explains why the higher hourly average concentrations of ozone are more important than the mid- and lower-levels. In 2010, Dr. Lefohn published three important papers with his research colleagues. The first paper dealt with the long-range transport of emissions associated with biomass burning in Eurasia and how these emissions affect surface ozone levels across the western US. The paper is an important contribution to those who are interested in the subject of policy-relevant background ozone. The second paper is an important contribution to those interested in alternative human health ozone standards that might be more appropriate than the current 8-h average concentration that is used as the US human health ozone standard. Dr. Lefohn was joined in this research by Drs. Hazucha and Adams, and Mr. Douglas Shadwick. The paper goes beyond the focus on an alternative form and level of the human health standard by detailing the common response, induction, response, and recovery (i.e., reversal) phases, observed across most of the key studies described. The third paper described the latest trends analysis by Dr. Lefohn and his colleagues on surface ozone for the period 1980-2008 and 1994-2008 for metropolitan and rural areas in the United States. The mathematical problem of how to deal with a changing rate of trends is discussed in the paper and examples are provided. For specific information concerning these papers, please visit the publications section of this web site. To learn more about our previous trends analyses, please click here.
The biologically based W126 cumulative exposure index developed by Dr. Lefohn in 1985 was recommended by EPA's Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC) in August 2006 and in January 2007 by EPA Staff to the Administrator as a possible ozone standard to protect vegetation. In June 2007, the EPA Administrator proposed the W126 exposure index as the secondary ozone standard. On March 12, 2008, the EPA Administrator made the final decision to revise the 8-hour "primary" ozone standard, designed to protect public health, to a level of 0.075 parts per million (ppm). The vegetation standard was set at the same level as the human-health related 8-hour ozone standard. In May 27, 2008, health and environmental organizations filed a lawsuit arguing that the EPA failed to protect public health and the environment when it issued in March 2008 new ozone standards. On March 10, 2009, the US EPA requested that the Court vacate the existing briefing schedule and hold the consolidated cases in abeyance. EPA requested the extension to allow time for appropriate EPA officials to review the Ozone NAAQS Rule to determine whether the standards established in the Ozone NAAQS Rule should be maintained, modified, or otherwise reconsidered. On September 16, 2009, the EPA announced it would reconsider the 2008 national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) for ground-level ozone for both human health and environmental effects. The Agency planned to propose any needed revisions to the ozone standards by December 2009 and issue a final decision by August 2010. In January 2010, the EPA announced its proposal to strengthen the national ambient air quality standards for ground-level ozone. The EPA's proposal decreased the 8-hour primary ozone standard level, designed to protect public health, to a level within the range of 0.060-0.070 parts per million (ppm). EPA proposed to establish a distinct cumulative, seasonal secondary standard, referred to as the W126 index, which was designed to protect sensitive vegetation and ecosystems, including forests, parks, wildlife refuges, and wilderness areas. EPA proposed to set the level of the W126 secondary standard within the range of 7-15 ppm-hours. The proposed revisions resulted from a reconsideration of the identical primary and secondary ozone standards set at 0.075 ppm in March 2008. Although the EPA indicated that it would announce its decision in August 2010, on August 20, the Agency announced that it would delay its final announcement to on or around the end of October. In early November, the EPA announced that it would reach a final decision on the ozone standards by December 31, 2010. On December 8, the EPA announced that it would delay its final decision on the ozone standards until July 2011. EPA announced on July 26 that it would not make a decision on the ozone standards by its previously announced deadline of July 29. On September 2, 2011, President Obama requested that the EPA withdraw its proposed revisions of the ozone standards.
|In 1996, he was the lead author of Chapter 4 (Environmental Concentrations, Patterns, and Exposure Estimates) of the U.S. EPA Air Quality Criteria for Ozone and Other Photochemical Oxidants, as well as a co-author of the exposure-response indices section in Chapter 5 (Environmental Effects of Ozone and Related Photochemical Oxidants). These documents formed the scientific support for the U.S. EPA's surface ozone standards to protect human health (primary) and vegetation (secondary). In the 2002-06 ozone review process, Dr. Lefohn co-authored sections in the Ozone Criteria Document that focused on vegetation|
exposure-/dose-response, air quality characterization, and background ozone. In 1993, Dr. Lefohn participated in a UN-ECE Workshop on Critical Levels for Ozone held in Bern, Switzerland, where he was invited to be one of the keynote presenters. In November 2005, he was invited to present a keynote paper (co-authored with Dr. Robert Musselman) "The Strengths and Weaknesses of Exposure- and Flux-Based Ozone Indices for Predicting Vegetation Effects" at the Critical Levels of Ozone Workshop held in Obergurgl, Tyrol, Austria.
In 1991, he was chairman of the UN World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Meeting of Experts to evaluate surface-level ozone exposures and trends at remote locations in the world. In 1989, he was the lead author of the National Acid Precipitation Assessment Program (NAPAP) State-of-Science Report No. 7: Air Quality Measurements and Characterizations for Vegetation Effects Research.
His past responsibilities have included his participation as senior researcher for the EPA's National Crop Loss Assessment Network (NCLAN). In this capacity, he was responsible for characterizing ambient air quality data and comparing the information with data collected under experimental conditions.
Dr. Lefohn has published over 150 peer-reviewed papers and technical reports, edited four books, presented oral papers, and participated in a number of television and radio interviews and international panel presentations. A sampling of his publications is available. For 11 years, he served as an Executive Editor of the prestigious scientific journal Atmospheric Environment. While continuing to actively perform his research, he also serves an Adjunct Professor of Environmental Engineering at Montana Tech in Butte, Montana. He served for several years on the University of California at Davis' Science Advisory Committee for the Center for Ecological Health Research. For several years he served as chairman of the Advisory Committee. Besides focusing on his research activities, he is actively involved in developing creative web pages for communicating with the general public. The focus of his design efforts is on developing and implementing strategies for the efficient transfer of quality information over the Internet. His web pages are well known for their creative appearance and innovative use of streaming audio and video. In the past, he has served as the volunteer webmaster for the Myrna Loy Center for the Performing and Media Arts and Artisan Dance group.
In May 2002, the Myrna Loy Center for the Performing and Media Arts in Helena, Montana, awarded the Heart of Myrna Loy Award to Dr. Lefohn. Dr. Lefohn was recognized as a primary volunteer across several years helping the Myrna Loy Center to regain its footing and to renew its many performing arts programs. He did this as a Board member working on helping the organization to do a critical analysis. Most importantly, Dr. Lefohn was acknowledged as providing great service by creating in the Spring of 2000 the Myrna Loy Center web site, www.myrnaloycenter.com. His guidance has turned the web site into a powerful marketing tool and the site has seen an increase in traffic that has dramatically climbed since May of 2000.
Dr. Lefohn has two sons, Kevin and Aaron. Kevin is a professional violinist, teacher, and arts administrator, and is the Executive Director of the Portland Youth Philharmonic. He and his wife, Milyn, and son Isaac, live in Portland, Oregon. Milyn has her Bachelor of Midwifery. Aaron has a Ph.D. in computer science and is a computer graphics and parallel programming architect and researcher. He is currently a Senior Graphics Architect at Intel. He was previously a Principal Engineer at Neoptica, a computer graphics startup acquired by Intel in October 2007. Prior to that experience, he was a researcher and software engineer at Pixar Animation Studios. He and his wife, Karen, live in the Seattle, Washington area. Karen has a B.S. in apparel design. Dr. Lefohn lives in peaceful Montana with his lovely wife (who teaches Qigong). Both are avid professional photographers who continuously donate their talents to the arts. A sampling of their work can be found in the Multimedia Center web page, photography of ballet contribution, and the Myrna Loy Center's Gallery of Photography. Their photography work has been featured across the United States and New Zealand and their creative efforts are well recognized in both local and national arts communities. Many of their photographs have been published in newspapers and national arts magazines. Dr. Lefohn is the creative arts photographer for the Helena Symphony Orchestra and Ballet Montana, a professional dance company, and was invited to photograph the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra in New Zealand. A set of his photographs of the Helena Symphony Orchestra was published in Symphony magazine, a publication produced by the League of American Orchestras. A gallery of Dr. Lefohn's photographs can be reviewed by clicking here. Dr. Lefohn and his wife desire to make the world, through the arts, a much better place in which to live.
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