Changlu Wang, extension specialist in entomology, and his Urban Entomology Lab, is a winner of the 2020 Governor’s Environmental Excellence Award in the Healthy and Sustainable Communities category, for their work in urban pest management.
Wang and lab colleagues, who have collaborated with communities in more than 20 cities in New Jersey to conduct research, education and demonstration in integrated pest management (IPM) programs focusing on healthy home environments in underserved communities, were recognized during a virtual ceremony held on Dec 14.
“This award helps raise awareness of the many pest related environmental risks present in the urban communities, said Wang. “I am glad we are able to make an impact in improving people’s living environment through urban pest management research and extension activities.”
Wang and his research team focus on developing new and improved techniques and materials for urban pest management. Their goal is to reduce pest problems and environmental risks in the urban environment, improve quality of life and protect public health. They provide statewide extension services on urban pest management, which involves a series of training, developing extension publications as well as coordination with stakeholders in answering questions and meeting client needs.
Their efforts have resulted in wider implementation of safer and more sustainable pest control methods in urban communities resulted in significantly lower levels in pest infestation, pest allergen and toxic insecticide residues in the indoor environment in low-income communities. Cities such as Bayonne, Hackensack, Jersey City, Irvington, Linden, Newark, New Brunswick, Paterson and Trenton, are among those that realized direct positive impacts through participation in the fieldwork of the Urban Entomology Lab.
The Governor’s Environmental Excellence Awards Program is New Jersey’s premier awards program for recognizing outstanding environmental performance, programs and projects throughout the state. These awards recognize individuals, businesses, institutions, communities, organizations, educators, youth and others who have made significant contributions to environmental protection in New Jersey. It is sponsored by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, New Jersey Infrastructure Bank and the New Jersey Corporation for Advanced Technology.
Rutgers Department of Environmental Sciences, which celebrated its centennial this year, won a 2020 Governor’s Environmental Excellence Award in the Educator-led category.