A new low-cost air quality platform hopes to change the way we quantify the adverse health impacts of air pollution in low-income countries

By Elanor Waslander

Waterloo Climate Institute

Shahan Salim, a PhD candidate in the School of Public Health Sciences and a member of the Waterloo Climate Institute’s COP 28 delegation, has designed, in partnership with UNICEF in Mongolia, a platform to use data from low-cost air quality sensors to monitor and predict adverse outcomes related to air pollution exposure in underserved communities. 

This low-cost innovation can significantly expand access to air quality data that has typically been generated by a limited number of higher-cost sensory stations that don't have user-friendly dashboards. Salim’s research has earned him an invitation to showcase his work at the prestigious international exhibition, Prototypes for Humanity, in Dubai. 

“Air pollution is tricky because until a few years ago, most of the information came through giant high-cost reference centres, which were static in one spot,” Salim says. “As technology is getting cheaper, faster, quicker and more effective, we can gain that same data and make it accessible to low-income communities.”

Read the full article from Waterloo News to learn more.