Most Polluted London Hotspots Revealed as CleanSpace, Greentomatocars Release Results of Map London Campaign

By IOT Journal

CleanSpace's data shows London's air pollution is worse in winter months.

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CleanSpace, the Internet of Things (IoT) sensor network to monitor air pollution, today releases the results of its 12-month ‘Map London’ campaign to build a hyper-local map of Greater London’s air pollution. Since September 2016 to September 2017, CleanSpace (which is operated by Drayson Technologies) has equipped thousands of local groups, businesses and communities with CleanSpace Tags, personal air pollution smart sensors. The ‘Map London’ initiative has generated over 15 million hyper-local air pollution data readings in Greater London over the 12-months period.

Analysis of the CleanSpace data identified some of the most polluted hotspots in Greater London. For example, WC1N was shown to be one of the most polluted postcode areas, followed by W10 and WC2N. Based on the data collected, these locations had the highest average overall carbon monoxide (CO) readings over the 12-month period.

The CleanSpace Tags measure CO as it is a pollutant found in both outdoor and indoor environments, and scientific testing of the Tags has shown that CO correlates well to all other major urban pollutants across seasons. CO is measured in parts per million (ppm) in line with the EPA standards.

The CleanSpace data showed its highest peak average of 1.84ppm CO across the capital during the 12 month period on the 23rd January 2017, which was the day the Mayor of London issued the city’s first ‘Black Alert’. There were also repeatedly high levels throughout November 2016 to February 2017, indicating average air pollution levels are higher during the winter months.

By examining its proprietary data and looking at the average levels of air pollution over a 24-hour period, CleanSpace has been able to identify the specific times when London is most polluted on a minute-by-minute basis. The CleanSpace data shows that air pollution, on average, is at its highest between 8.51am and 9.21am, and in the evenings between 8pm to midnight. The latter spike is most likely attributed to Londoners being exposed to pollutants in indoor environments such as restaurants and bars as they enjoy the capital’s nightlife. This reinforces the fact that indoor air pollution is harmful to people’s health, as recently highlighted by the Royal College of Physicians.

‘Map London’ launched in 2016 with support from the British Lung Foundation, and has since incorporated a partnership with London’s largest environmentally friendly private hire service, greentomatocars. Through this partnership, greentomatocars vehicles were equipped with CleanSpace Tags which have generated over 1.5 million air pollution readings from their daily journeys.

Data collected through the partnership indicates that some of the most polluted streets in London are Bishops Bridge Road, near Paddington Station, followed by Euston Road, and Great Portland Street. All streets measured CO readings over 20 ppm.

Those insights come just days after London implements the Toxicity Charge (T-Charge) where older, more polluting vehicles must pay to enter central London. It also follows the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, triggering the capital’s emergency air quality alert for the seventh time in the last 13 months.