Steven N. Chillrud, PhD

World Trade Center Environmental Contaminant Database

Alison Geyh and Steve Chillrud at WTC site with large-volume air sampler.

In response to the strong interest in environmental contaminant data that emerged after the World Trade Center attack on September 11, 2001, researchers and data managers at Columbia University and Johns Hopkins University collaborated to create the World Trade Center Environmental Contaminant Database (WTCECD). The database is comprised of data from the USEPA's Aerometric Information Retrieval System (AIRS) dataset, as well as data from various federal, state and local agencies that collected New York City air quality data in direct response to the disaster.

Previous to the creation of the WTCECD, data from these various sources were publicly available, but were not easily accessible to interested individuals. They resided in physically separate locations, in a variety of unfamiliar formats that did not lend themselves to being easily searched. The primary purpose of the WTCECD was to simplify the process of acquiring air quality data collected both before and after September 11, 2001.

Access to the WTCECD is available at

Related Publications

  • Chillrud, S.N. A. Geyh, D. Levy, E. Chettiar, D. Chaky, (2006) The World Trade Center Environmental Contaminant Database, Urban Aerosols and Their Impacts: Lessons learned from the World Trade Center Tragedy, J. S. Gaffney and N. A. Marley (Eds.) American Chemical Society Symposium Volume 919 Chapter 13, pp. 277-285.
  • Breysse PN, Williams DL, Herbstman JB, Symons JM, Chillrud SN, Ross J, Henshaw S, Rees K, Watson M, Geyh AS. (2005) Asbestos Exposures to Truck Drivers During World Trade Center Clean Up Operations J. Occ. Environ. Hygiene, 2: 400-405.
  • Geyh A.S, Chillrud S, Williams D, Herbstman JB, Symons JM, Rees K, Trupin,BJ, Lim, HJ, Kim, SR, Breysse PN (2005) Assessing Truck Driver Exposure at the World Trade Center Disaster Site: Personal and Area Monitoring for Particulate Matter and Volatile Organic Compounds during October 2001 and April 2002 J. Occ. Environ. Hygiene 2:179-193.
  • Landrigan, P.J., P.J.. Lioy, G. Thurston, G. Berkowitz, L.C. Chen, S.N. Chillrud, S. H. Gavett, P. G. Georgopoulos, A. S. Geyh, S. Levin, F. Perera, S. M. Rappaport, C. Small, and the NIEHS World Trade Center Working Group (2004) Health and Environmental consequences of the World Trade Center Disaster. Environ. Health Persp., 112:731-739.