The Shanghai Environmental Protection Bureau has relaunched its daily air quality monitoring service with a cute new mascot who’s expression shows just how many pollutants residents of Shanghai are breathing in on any given day.
Environmental researcher Angel Hsu is impressed by the new site:
Comparing the daily PM 2.5 (fine particulate matter) microblogs with the previous version, there are some definite improvements, along with AQI girl: the AQI color codes are integrated along with the AQI PM2.5 readings for Shanghai’s 10 stations. They also provide the concentration data in micrograms/cubic meter below (the straight line with the circles) over a 24-hour averaged period. They also provide some text explaining what the AQI is, what pollutants it measures, and what the various thresholds (“excellent,” “good,” etc.) mean. It’s a huge improvement in terms of making the information much more accessible than the previous version. Other EPBs could really take a cue from what Shanghai’s done.
Considering that AQI girl is crying when the index is at 500, one wonders how she would have reacted to Beijing’s ‘airpocalypse’ last week, when the AQI stood at a previously unheard of 900.