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New app to alert Copenhageners about polluted air

State of Green
By State of Green, September 24, 2018

The City of Copenhagen has allocated budget for an app that will alert citizens when the level of air pollution exceeds the health risk limit.

Accoring to the Danish newspaper Berlingske, 550 Copenhageners die each year as a result of air pollution. Now the City of Copenhagen aims to ensure that the citizens can move around in the city without worrying about inhaling harmful particles.

By installing devices that will monitor the amount of air pollution throughout the city, it will be possible to alert Copenhageners directly through an app when the pollution exceeds the EU health risk limit. This gives the citizens an opportunity to re-route if a certain risk occurs on the bike ride to or home from work. At the same time, the citizens of Copenhagen can access a municipal website with up-to-date air quality data.

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‘’If the route you bike every day is polluted, you might not feel anything from one day to the next, but throughout an entire life the risk for premature death will increase. It actually matters which way you choose to bike each day’’, Steffen Loft, Head of the Department of Public Health at the University of Copenhagen, explained to Berlingske.

He stressed, however, that biking is better than driving your car as the exercise will benefit your health regardless of the polluted air. Additionally, you will avoid contributing to pollution and climate change.

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Air pollution is an issue in the entire capital area and especially in central Copenhagen. With assistance from the monitoring stations, the City of Copenhagen hopes to identify the areas with heavy air pollution, explained the mayor of health and care, Sisse Marie Welling.

“Copenhagen has the same air pollution problems as we see in other parts of the world. The best we can do is enlighten our citizens on which areas to avoid’’, she told Berlingske.

The City of Copenhagen has allocated EUR 1.6 million to install monitoring stations around the city.

Source: Berlingske (in Danish)

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