UCI atmospheric chemist Donald Blake has won California’s elite Haagen-Smit Clean Air Award for his seminal pollution research. The state Air Resources Board found that Blake has produced internationally acclaimed measurements of volatile organic compounds in the atmosphere that have provided critical insights into air pollution and climate change. His research has shown, for instance, how elevated air pollution in places such as Mexico City can be attributed to propane use and cooking emissions rather than traffic pollution. “It is a huge honor to be recognized as having helped improve our knowledge of air quality, and I am humbled (a lot) by receiving the award,” Blake said. California’s premier air quality award is named for the late Arie Haagen-Smit, known as the “father” of air pollution science and control. The annual award recognizes those who continue his legacy through perseverance, leadership and innovation, furthering public health.