Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Environmental Health Sciences

Content Description

1 online resource (xiii, 198 pages) : color illustrations.

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Xiaobo X Romeiko

Committee Members

Shao Lin, Beth J Feingold, Haider A Khwaja, Xuesong Zhang


Biomass energy, Greenhouse gases, Corn products, Respiratory organs, Ethanol as fuel

Subject Categories

Environmental Health


Background: The demand for biobased products, such as food, fuel, and chemicals, has been continuously increasing. Meanwhile, agricultural production, serving as the primary stage of biobased products, is one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and nutrient releases. Although assessing spatially and temporally explicit environmental releases and impacts are required to inform a sustainable trajectory for agricultural production, such analyses are largely lacking due to data unavailability and feasibility of data analysis. Moreover, our current understanding of health impacts associated with biofuel production are lacking due to the limited assessment of health impacts resulted from biofuels’ entire life cycle. For instance, little is known about public health’s risks associated with exposure to biorefinery-related pollutants despite the existing number ethanol plants in the U.S. In addition, due to the unexpected and unprecedented effects of climate on agriculture, quantifying future environmental impacts of corn production will be necessary for planning adaptation and mitigation strategies.