From air pollution caused by cars and trucks to methane leaks, many of the same emissions that cause climate change also harm public health.
Crystal Upperman is with Aclima, a California-based company that measures ground-level air pollution. She says the results of those measurements vary dramatically, even on a local level.
For example, Aclima mapped air quality on city streets in Oakland, California.
Upperman says it found that “air pollution levels can persistently vary from one end of the block to another as much as by 800%.”
Now the company is measuring and mapping emissions on the other side of the country. It’s using a low-emission vehicle that’s outfitted with sensing technology.
“And it’ll be measuring air pollutant and greenhouse gas levels block by block in Brooklyn,” Upperman says.
It will collect data day and night for three months. The results will allow residents to see how much pollution they’re exposed to at home, school, or work. And it can help identify the specific sources.
“Communities can use the information to put forward very stringent, rigorous steps to reduce air pollution emissions and also help protect the health of their populations,” Upperman says.
And reducing those emissions will, at the same time, slow global warming.
Reporting credit: ChavoBart Digital Media.