Cambridge Environmental Research Consultants (CERC)

AirTEXT Air Quality Alerts for Riga

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The World Health Organisation warns that air pollution is a major global cause of death and disease, and in sensitive people short-term exposure can lead to reduced lung function, respiratory infections and aggravated asthma. Air pollution levels can vary greatly in just a few hours. Residents of Riga now benefit from a new free service Riga airTEXT, launched on 27 February at Riga City Hall. Riga airTEXT informs the public with free air quality alerts by text message and emails. Air quality forecasts up to three days ahead are available online at www.rigaairtext.lv and in a free phone app. Information is also available from the Riga airTEXT Facebook and Twitter pages.

Now thanks to Riga airTEXT the public can prepare in advance for short-term periods of poor air quality. People with asthma or heart disease can take positive steps, like keeping an asthma inhaler nearby or avoiding strenuous outdoor activity.

A cutting-edge computer system at CERC automatically combines state-of-the-art satellite observations, air quality forecasts for Europe from the EU Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS) and ultra-high-resolution air quality forecasts for Riga from the world-leading system ADMS-Urban. ADMS-Urban simulates pollution dispersion and chemical reactions in large urban areas, accounting for thousands of individual sources and the complex air flow produced by buildings and streets. The result is a highly detailed map of street-level air pollution, with more than 100,000 data points.

Riga airTEXT has been developed by UK and Latvian scientists from CERC and ELLE with financial support from the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS). Riga City Council and the Latvian Ministry of Environment are working closely with the Riga airTEXT team to ensure that the service meets the needs of the public.

A short video about Riga airTEXT has been produced by CAMS.

For more information on airTEXT, ADMS-Urban or forecasting services

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