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July 29, 2015

Google Street View cars to map air pollution

Google Street view cars collected information about air pollution in Denver.

By CBR Staff Writer

Aclima, a San Francisco-based environmental sensor network maker, has partnered with Google Earth Outreach to map urban air quality through Street View cars.

Google Earth Outreach is a non-profit organisation set up by the search giant and as part of the partnership Aclima will equip Google’s Street View cars with its mobile sensing platform.

The cars then took measurements of nitrogen dioxide, nitric oxide, ozone, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, along with other gases that can affect human health or climate change.

The month long experiment was conducted on the roads of Denver and the cars drove for 750 hours and gathered 150 million data points.

The testing was done during the DISCOVER-AQ study conducted by NASA and the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Aclima and Google are planning to bring their mapping efforts to the San Francisco Bay Area this fall.

Google Earth Outreach program manager Karin Tuxen-Bettman said: "Environmental air quality is an issue that affects everyone, especially those living in big cities."

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"This partnership with Aclima builds on our ongoing partnership with the Environmental Defense Fund, enabling us to take the next steps in our pilot project to use Street View and Google Maps as an environmental mapping platform.

"We hope this information will enable more people to be aware of how our cities live and breathe, and join the dialog on how to make improvements to air quality."

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