Last year, we met Vidalink during a trade fair in Europe. Based in Minsk, they provide solutions indoor air quality monitoring, and when they heard about the Polish Challenge Fund, they reached out to us for a partnership. The Fund engages Polish companies to address complex development challenges in ways that are sustainable, suitable to the local context, and scalable and replicable within a country.
A few months later, after becoming challenge grantees, we conducted the first training for our air quality sensors in the Vidalink offices and installed the first Airly sensor outside their window.
Today, in Minsk alone, our network of air quality sensors already includes 17 devices. Local clean air activists in VidaLink’s network managed to quickly and efficiently distribute and install the devices in other large cities in Belarus. Half a year after launching our first sensors in Belarus, we are working with Vidalink on notifying users about the possible health threats caused by air pollution. We want to demonstrate the risks for the six body systems – respiratory, mental, cardiovascular, sensory, neuro and immune – as well as virus activity level, COVID-19 being mainly a disease of the respiratory system – to decrease the susceptibility and vulnerability of people who are exposed to air pollution.
Airly pilots air quality monitoring and forecasting solutions, both for tracking and identifying the sources of air pollution, and also for gathering information for data-based decision making processes to improve the air quality.
This is part of a series of articles on air pollution in Europe and Central Asia. Around the region, UNDP is working to tackle the problem of air pollution, from getting a sense of its breadth to finding the causes behind it to informing policy and encouraging greener development - so that everyone can breath cleaner air.