New Site Makes the Air Pollution We Breathe Visible
Image of Times Square, New York City, pollution via Blueair.
Bits of pollen, brake dust, fossil fuel exhaust and other grungy hazards can make breathing difficult.
Every day we are exposed to microscopic pollution hazards that can cause discomfort and lead to illness and even death. But until now it was all invisible.
Blueair, a producer of air purifiers, introduced Air View, a new free digital service that shows outdoor air hazards based on address.
The service was introduced to create awareness of the high level of pollution around people every day.
More than half of Americans (166 million) live where year-round air pollution levels are often too dangerous to breathe.*
Blueair’s Air View offers a street-level look at pollutants impacting air quality anywhere across the United States. Air View, combined with Wi-Fi enabled Blueair air purifiers and air quality monitors like Blueair Aware, help people better understand what they’re breathing and take steps to improve it.
Blake Bobosky, EVP Sales and Marketing for Blueair North America says, “Most people are unaware we breathe large amounts of harmful particles daily. In big cities and along routes with high traffic or wildfires, high levels of substances such as nitrogen oxides can accumulate, which in the long run can have a negative effect on the respiratory system. We want to draw attention to what we and our children actually breathe every day in the hope we can help more people take initiatives for cleaner air.”
Air pollution causes 200,000 early deaths each year in the U.S., mostly as a result of vehicle emissions, according to an MIT study. Incidents of pollution-causing wildfires are also on the rise. A recent study suggests that climate change, responsible for doubling wildfire activity since the 1980s, will continue to chronically enhance forest fire potential for the western U.S.
The Air View service lets users see which particles and gases exist in the air, providing a 360° street view of any address – at their home, where they work or even an upcoming travel destination – on desktop computers or mobile devices.
The user can click on various air pollutants to learn more about compounds such as sulfur dioxide, pollen and ozone, as well as learn how they affect their health.
Air View uses data from monitoring stations all over the world, and the measured results are continuously updated. The service provides information from the nearest station on the levels of various air pollutants, and evaluates the quality of the air in a particular area. The street view of the service is generated by Google Street View.
Heart disease and lung conditions are most commonly linked to inhaling air pollution, but the liver, spleen, central nervous system, brain and even reproductive system can also be damaged. Children, the elderly, and people with allergies are particularly vulnerable.
Air View is free of charge and can be used at airview.blueair.com.
Read more about indoor air quality.