The Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) has partnered with Aclima – a San Francisco-based company which builds Internet-connected air quality sensors and the software to analyze the extracted data – to use mobile air sensors that will gather detailed pollution data from across the San Francisco metro area. Data regarding a range of pollutants including PM 2.5, ozone, and nitrogen dioxide will be collected.
Jack Broadbent, CEO of the Air District, said, “the Air District is investing in innovation to bring an unprecedented level of visibility of air pollution and climate emissions. This project will help shine a light on the disparate health impacts faced by many in the region. And it will inform lawmakers to better guide our decision-making process to protect the health of all Bay Area residents moving forward.”
BAAQMD covers about 5,000 square miles (~1.2949941 x 1010 square meters) and serves more than 7.5 million residents. The Air District has one of the most extensive air quality monitoring networks in the United States, with more than 30 monitoring stations throughout the region. The addition of this hyper-localized air quality data will complement regulatory stations by accurately measuring and analyzing air quality at the block-by-block level.
“For the first time in our entire region, low-emission cars will be equipped with air-quality sensing devices as they drive multiple times over every publicly accessible street in the Bay Area,” said Ranyee Chiang, director of meteorology and measurements at the Air District.
The drives will be conducted throughout 2020 and 2021, and then will be combined with other air district data to map out block-by-block air-quality. The data will ultimately be publicly available via the Air District website.
“This new transformative visibility into the health of our environment provides a critical tool, supporting and accelerating action to reduce emissions, protect the public, and protecting the health of our planet,” said Davida Herzl, CEO of Aclima. “Because ultimately, the emissions that are polluting the air we breathe are also changing out climate, profoundly impacting human health and creating multi-billion dollar impacts across our economies.”