U.S. Department of State Hosts “Why Air Quality Monitoring Matters” Discussion and Inducts First U.S. Embassy Monitor Into Permanent Collection

To celebrate Air Quality Awareness Week, April 30 � May 4, the U.S. Department of State hosted a Why Monitoring Matters panel discussion with representatives from U.S. Government agencies and the private sector. The panel focused on the important role transparent, real-time air quality data plays in informing policy making, increasing international action to improve air quality, and helping individuals protect themselves from the harmful effects of air pollution. Participants emphasized how American air pollution monitoring and emissions control technologies help address this global challenge. Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs Judith Garber delivered closing remarks.

The event concluded with the opening of a new exhibit about the U.S. Department of State’s Air Quality Monitoring Program that was created through a partnership with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in February 2015. The exhibit featured the Department’s first air quality monitor that was installed at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, China, in 2008 in advance of the Summer Olympics. The monitor will become part of the U.S. Diplomacy Center’s permanent collection. The original Beijing monitor led to the development of third-party apps, which help to share widely its real-time air quality data. Since 2015, the U.S. Department of State has installed 28 air quality monitors at U.S. embassies and consulates across the globe. By fall 2018, that number will rise to 35.

Air monitoring technology is a critical step in addressing global air pollution. U.S. companies stand at the forefront of air quality monitoring and emissions control technologies, and the United States is working with other countries to share our experiences and best practices in the air quality sector, which will improve health and contribute to economic growth.

For more information, contact OES-PA-DG@state.gov and follow the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs on Twitter @StateDeptOES and #AQAW2018.

Source: U.S. Department of State

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