Two of Australia’s largest air pollution monitoring networks announced

The country’s most expansive system for tracking air pollution reflects ongoing efforts to improve its environmental record.

Two of Australia’s largest air quality monitoring networks have been announced, with air pollution measurement firm Clarity taking a lead on the projects.

Equipment is being installed in schools across Western Australia, expanding existing provision from six to 100 schools, through a partnership with UNSW as part of the CleanAir Schools programme, while association with the Royal Automobile Club (RAC) of Western Australia in Perth is also rolling out infrastructure, bringing the total number of new measuring points in cities to 400, covering a 9,700 square kilometre area.

Once live, the installs will map air quality in real time to offer a publicly accessible, free-to-use resource delivering vital information on ambient pollution to residents. It is hoped this will make it easier for people to protect themselves and loved ones, particularly those who are vulnerable, and enable more pro-active steps to be taken to tackle flashpoints and consistent pollution sources. 

‘These two collaborations with RAC in Western Australia & CleanAir Schools will allow millions of Australians to better understand the localised air quality within their neighborhoods and schools.
With this knowledge, residents of Perth and NSW will be able to make informed decisions on how to protect their health, improve their air quality, and combat climate change,’ said Dr Meiling Gao, Clarity COO. 

‘Through the RAC Air Health Monitor, we want to accelerate action to reduce vehicle emissions,’ added RAC WA Group Executive Social and Community Impact, Patrick Walker. ‘This requires government and individual behavioural changes. Governments in terms of policy changes, investment and education to support electric vehicle uptake and tackle congestion. Individuals in terms of purchasing lower emission vehicles and driving less through considering greater use of public transport, e-mobility devices, and walking and cycling more.’

Traffic and climate-related air pollution post huge public health risks in Australia. In 2020, wildfires in the country were so severe they produced a 1,000km-wide smoke cloud so dense it blocked sunlight over Earth for several months as it travelled 66,000km around the planet at a height of 35km. 

Image: Mad Photography Perth


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