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DPD has launched a new air quality monitoring programme across six cities in the UK.

Project BREATHE, as it’s been dubbed, will put air quality sensors on top of DPD vans and pick-up shops close to school and play areas in Birmingham, Cardiff, Glasgow, Leeds and Manchester by the end of this month.

In London, there are already 100 mobile sensors and 20 fixed sensors in action. With the new additions, this number will grow to around 400 in total.

The sensors will, between them, take 1.5 million pollution readings a day, each unit taking one every 12 seconds. The purpose is to measure particulate matter referred to as “PM2.5”, fine particles that are fewer than 2.5 microns in diameter.

These particles, which get stuck inside lung tissue, are associated with a range of major health problems including asthma and cancer.

Through the Polutrack AirDiag system, DPD will use the gathered data to provide street-by-street air quality information, for use by local councils, DPD customers and academics. It will be able to start reporting on the data after two months of monitoring.

DPD’s plan is to launch the scheme across Europe, with 2,400 sensors across 20 cities before the end of the year.

Source: DPD

Header image: Donald Tong

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