The World Air Quality Index project is a social enterprise project started in 2007. Its mission is to promote Air Pollution awareness and provide a unified Air Quality information, for the whole world, in real-time via those two websites: aqicn.org and waqi.info.
Its core team is located in Beijing, China and composed of contributors in the domain Environmental Science, System Engineering, Data Visualization as well as Product Design.
If you are interrested in writing about our project, you can use the media kit or download our project overview PDF deck. If you are interrested in supporting this project or joining the team, please send us a message.
We are looking for help to translate this website. More information, please check the translation page.
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Common question & answers:
- Air Quality Data sources: All the Air Quality data readings you see on World Air Quality Index is the official data from each country respective Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Data from each EPAs is measured using professional monitoring equipment such as BAM and TOEM stations. The full EPA source list used in World Air Quality Index is available from sources.
- Seeing different readings from other websites: This is most likely normal, and due to the fact that different websites use different AQI scales present the data. At World Air Quality Index, we are using the US EPA scale, while other website might use different scales. Check this article for more information.
- I want to add a new station on the map: Provided your monitoring station is qualified (eg it is a BAM or TOEM like), then adding a new station on the map is simple and straightforward. Please refer to this page for the full explanation
- Data quality & real-time validation: The data published on World Air Quality Index is real-time and therefore unvalidated at the time of publication. In order to strengthen the quality, we have developed a full set of machine learning based algorithms to detect abnormal data conditions (sparks, low reporting, etc.) and automatically 'disable' data reporting for defective stations.
- Historical data access: We are currently investigating with several international institutions (WHO, UN, GEO) the possibility to setup a framework for accessing the historical Air Quality data. If you are from an international institution, organization or university and want to join this effort, please use this link.
- I want to contribute to the World Air Quality Index project: Everyone is welcome, we are always looking for more hands to support the project: For instance, to write 'vulgarization' articles from the frequently asked questions (eg what is ground ozone or what is the impact of rain on air quality ), to improve our applications (especially the missing iOS app!), to create new data visualization, to improve the air quality forecast systems, to review or design smart IOT monitoring hardware or to translate the website and app to news languages.
- Fundings: The World Air Quality Index project is independent of any governement and any "profit" corporation, and as so far not received any fundings from such entities. Our income is currently based on advertising, but this is not our prefered choice. Therefore, in order to keep the highlest level of integrity for the health related information we are publishing, we are now working on switching away from the avertising, and getting fully supported by a consortium of global organizations including the UN, the WHO, the WMO, several of the global EPAs as well as the major NGOs.
- Why chosing the U.S. EPA index to harmonize the data? This is mostly for historcal reason: When we started in 2007, there was not so many alternative, and the US EPA was actually quite proactive at promoting the idea of clean air, so the choice was natural. Some alternatives, such as the European “Common Air Quality Index” could also have been a good option, but the EEA failed to promote their standard. This won't be a problem for long anyways, since we are now working on a improvement which will allow users to select any scale they want among a list of more than 80 scales!
- How many cities do you currently provide air quality data for and is the info available on your app in each of them? We are providing the data for 8000 stations worldwide ~ that’s around 1000 cities in 60 countries. The info is available in the app for each of them, but not all of the cities have the “full” set of pollutant monitoring (e.g. PM2.5, PM10, Ozone, NO2, SO2, CO). For example, some only have PM10 or a composite AQI. We are also continuously increasing the coverage, targeting to get 10 to 20% more stations every year. The full list of cities and stations is available from this page.