Changlu Wang, assistant extension specialist at the Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station was awarded $342,905 “to design and implement a model bed bug integrated pest management (IPM) program for low-income communities.” The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) made the announcement on Aug. 26 as part of a combined $1 million award to Rutgers under the auspices of HUD’s Healthy Homes Initiative. The bed bug model “will compare this IPM program with those of existing IPM strategies to create practical, widely applicable and accepted protocols that will reduce bed bug management costs and improve the health and well-being of residents through effective eradication of bed bugs.”
A second HUD grant of $687,000 was awarded the Center for Green Building at Rutgers “to test and refine cost-effective methods for detecting health and safety hazards in affordable housing by using laser and infrared imaging equipment capable of detecting structural deficiencies, moisture, mold, breaches in insulation, insect harborages and vermin tracks at very detailed levels and, by leveraging building information models created from laser scan data, to gain systems level understanding of patterns of health and safety hazards.”
According to the HUD release, this funding highlights the link between housing and health and develops cost effective methods for mitigating residential hazards. The HUD grants are awarded to academic and non-profit research institutions studying new methods to recognize and control residential health and safety hazards such as asthma triggers, bed bugs, mold and radon. The Rutgers funding is part of $10.5 million in HUD awards to organizations and universities nationwide. Read more at the HUD website.