Dr Peter Irga

Dr Peter Irga

What is the problem you are trying to address?

There is a clear need for air cleaning technologies that are capable of effectively filtering a comprehensive range of pollutants in an energy efficient manner. It is widely recognized by all sectors of industry and government that innovative technological solutions will be required to achieve climate resilience, sustainable urban development and local air pollution mitigation.

What is your research doing to solve this problem?

Dr Irga has pioneered ‘active phytosystem biofiltration’ – where he uses plants in the form of green walls to remove air pollutants, with multiple installations, including indoor offices, multistorey carparks, vehicle tunnels and roadsides. Optimising green wall technology to more effectively remove air pollution showcases the innate ability of urban forestry, with some technological development, to remediate air pollution, and demonstrate the potential of nature-based solutions to become an integral component of future cities.

Public outreach or science communication outputs:

Dr Irga is passionate about sharing knowledge, and helping others to also explore that knowledge is what makes any academic pursuit worthwhile.

To do this he contributes to outreach programs, public lectures, and student mentorship. Dr Irga’s has made media appearances on television ABC News, Channel 9 News, and Channel 7 News. Dr Irga’s earned media contributions amounts to over $1M in 2021 alone.

He also participates in public policy debates through disciplinary and professional bodies.

Dr Irga received their PhD from the University of Technology Sydney in 2017, and is currently employed there as an ARC DECRA Fellow and Senior Lecturer.