Richmond is consistently ranked as one of the worst cities in the U.S. for asthma sufferers by the National Asthma and Allergy Foundation. Science Museum of Virginia, located in Richmond, is measuring local concentrations of airborne pollution.
The Science Museum is working with community members to collect local air quality data and create solutions to the City of Richmond’s environmental health challenges.
Devin Jefferson, Community Science Catalyst at the Science Museum of Virginia, works with community members to use both mobile and stationary sensors to measure local concentrations of airborne pollution known as particulate matter (PM), a mixture of microscopic particles in the air that has been linked with cardiovascular and respiratory diseases. The sensors collect long-term air quality data that is publicly available online.
By creating low barriers to participation, the Science Museum of Virginia had helped more community member become invested in data collection, which has produced highly actionable, quality data.