DPD, already known for being the UKs most sustainable delivery company have announced that they are rolling out air quality monitoring across 6 UK cities.
Project Breathe as it is named, is currently live in London with 100 mobile air quality sensors on the roof of DPD vans and 20 fixed units on DPD PickUp shops close to schools and play areas. By the end of May, Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester, Glasgow and Cardiff will join the ground-breaking initiative, creating a network of over 400 sensors in total, delivering 1.5m pollution readings a day.
“BREATHE is a hugely significant project for us and complements our 2025 strategy to deliver via electric vehicles to 25 cities in the UK. We will be measuring air pollution using our existing city centre fleet and facilities. Typically, air quality monitoring has just been based on fixed positions, whereas we are mobile and cover the whole of a city at different times. We will be providing real-time, breathing level readings that could help improve air quality for millions of people.”
– Olly Craughan, Head of CSR, DPD
The sensors, which are the size of a broadband router, take readings every 12 seconds and are focused on the most critical health impactor, fine particles PM2.5 at breathing level, to provide real time data designed to help visualise the air quality issue and identify hotspots.
PM2.5 refers to dangerous particles of pollution that are less than 2.5 microns in diameter. At 1/20th the width of a human hair, they lodge deep in lung tissue and are linked to many diseases including cancer and asthma.
The UK roll-out is part of a Europe wide DPD programme in partnership with expert air quality tracking provider Pollutrack, with a planned total of 2,400 sensors across 20 European cities by the end of 2021.