Education and Outreach

*** NEW *** In support of at-home environmental education during these uprecedented times, members of DAQ's outreach team have developed educational videos featuring:

  • Division of Air Quality (older students) -- What we do and why we do it;
  • History of Air Pollution (younger students) -- Past issues of air pollution and the progress that has been made;
  • History of Air Pollution (older students) -- The history of air pollution, early measures to correct it and disasters resulting from air quality problems;
  • DAQ Outreach Demos (all age groups) -- demonstrations of air pollution control devices and acid rain mitigation.
  • Why is Coco Orange? (recommended for ages 4 to 8) -- a read along with Coco and his friends as they solve a mystery and learn about air quality.

All videos are available on YouTube, click here.  For more information, contact Stephanie Hammonds at

Due to their complexity, air quality issues are often difficult to convey.  In 2006, the Division of Air Quality formed an "outreach" team to explore more contemporary ways of communicating with the public.  The team includes personnel from all sections and job classifications of the agency.  Expenditures are paid for from the DAQ's Air Pollution Education and Environment Fund, funded by enforcement settlements. (Click here to see a history of our Outreach Team.)

To schedule speakers or find out more about the outreach displays below, contact Stephanie Hammonds, Information Management/Outreach Manager, at 304-92-0499, ext. 41263.  See the bottom of the page for links to other educational sources.

Designed by DAQ engineers, the "Smoke Simulator" demonstrates the difference between controlled and uncontrolled emissions of a coal-fired boiler.  A short presentation explains the Clean Air Act's evolution starting with the 1948 smog disaster in Donora, Pennsylvania, and ending with the simulator.  Dry ice is used to simulate "pollution" and small fans, with and without a filter, are used to draw the "pollution" through two large acrylic stacks. 
   The "Crank Generator" was designed to allow particpants to manually provide power for both an incandescent light bulb and a CFL or LED bulb.  By the end of the demonstration they can physically feel how much less energy CFL and LED bulbs use and equate that to reducing their own electric demands and costs.  This is a powerful - no pun intended - message, not only how to save money, but how to protect the environment by using less electricity.
 Staff converted a child's dollhouse into an "Energy Efficient Model House" complete with solar panel.  This display gives us the opportunity to discuss alternative energy and energy conservation in the home.  
   The "Solar Race Track" demonstrates an alternative energy source.  A solar panel charges a battery pack and allows a slot car race track to be used both in and out of doors.  This has proven to be one of our most popular outreach displays to date.
 Our "ESP Machine" demonstrates how an induced electrostatic charge controls smoke at a coal-fired power plant by removing fine particulate matter, such as dust and smoke, from the stacks.  
  In December, the DAQ turns the entire DEP Headquarters into an outreach display.  The "DEP Energy Tree" allows the public to provide the power, via hand crank, to light up a traditional 100-bulb incandescent tree versus an 800-plus light, 35-foot LED tree, draped to the side of the DEP building, bringing home our core outreach message -- "Save Money, Save Energy, Save the Environment." To see our Environment Matters video CLICK HERE.
Our "Nickel Smasher" imprints environmental messages into coins and provides a low-cost souvenir.   


Outreach Display Projects

Solar Race Track

The solar panel charges the battery system and allows use of the solar race track on sunny days, overcast days and indoors.

Energy House

This display was designed by DAQ personnel to provide talking points about alternative energy and energy conservation in the home.

Glass Comparison

This display was built to illustrate how different types of window glass can save energy.

Tire Inflation

This display was designed by DAQ personnel to demonstrate the importance of proper tire inflation. Properly inflated tires help ensure maxium gas mileage. Properly maintained vehicles use less gas and pollute less.

Roof Color

This display was was built to illustrate the concepts: that color affects heat and light absorption and that insulation blocks heat transfer.

Wind Turbine Diorama

This display was was built to illustrate some of the renewable energy sources available in West Virginia.

Links to other educational resources for teachers and students: