Scaling Climate Action at the Street Level and on the Global Stage

3 min read
November 6 2018

Transformational changes are happening across the world and across all sectors as a result of technological innovation, new and creative policies and political will at all levels. States and regions, cities, businesses and investors are leading the charge on pushing down global emissions by 2020, setting the stage to reach net zero emissions by midcentury.​​ — Global Climate Action Summit Website

ith COP 24 in Poland right around the corner, we wanted to take the opportunity to look back on an action-filled few months for Aclima to scale our efforts to measure and map hyperlocal air pollution globally. In early September, a powerful coalition of leaders from state and local governments, business, and citizens came together in San Francisco for the Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS) to showcase the latest in climate action and inspire deeper commitments from one another and from national governments. At the same time, scientists and air quality experts also convened across the Bay in Oakland for the 1st annual Air Sensors International Conference (ASIC) to help advance and develop knowledge about air quality measurement.

Aclima and Google Announce Scaling Efforts at GCAS

Aclima kicked off GCAS with an announcement with Google Street View to scale and integrate our mobile sensing platform into Google’s global fleet, starting with 50 cars. Building on four years of research and demonstration efforts in California, we’re excited to show the power of mobile monitoring to make air quality visible at scales not previously possible. The cars will be equipped with our mobile sensor node, which measures a range of pollutants like nitrogen dioxide (NO2), ozone (O3), and particulate matter (PM2.5) while the cars routinely collect Street View imagery in cities and regions around the world. The cars hit the road in the coming months.

“These measurements can provide cities with new neighborhood-level insights to help cities accelerate efforts in their transition to smarter, healthier cities,” said Karin Tuxen-Bettman, Program Manager for Google Earth Outreach.

Aclima Team at the Air Sensors International Conference

Aclima Exhibitor_Global Climate Action Summit_new mobile sensing node
Aclima exhibitor booth showcases new mobile sensing node.

At ASIC, Aclima’s scientific and technical team shared the latest in low-cost sensing technologies, methods, and research through podium and poster presentations to help advance knowledge about air quality measurement. In addition to sharing science, our exhibitor booth unveiled our new mobile sensing node, which we are scaling with enterprise fleet partners like Google Street View.

​​For Aclima, ASIC was an opportunity for our team to connect with the air quality community and to demonstrate to our fellow scientific community our complete system for measuring and managing hyperlocal air quality — a first- of- its- kind end-to-end solution to advance awareness and action in service of human and planetary health. Check out our short video with highlights from the week.

Aclima Helps Announce the Lawyers for a Sustainable Economy Initiative

It was an honor to wrap up the week on stage at the Global Climate Action Summit to help announce a commitment of $15 million in pro bono services from 15 U.S. law firms, led by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, to advance sustainability across the globe. The “Lawyers for a Sustainable Economy” initiative was announced by Aclima CEO Davida Herzl, who represented the Grist 50 Fixers, as well as Governor Jennifer Granholm, former Governor of Michigan, and will accelerate our efforts to create a more resilient, sustainable, and equitable world.

Aclima CEO Davida Herzl on stage at GCAS announcing the “Lawyers for a Sustainable Economy” initiative.

Access to legal support is instrumental for today’s environmental “fixers” to build businesses, invent technologies, and form non-governmental organizations and other vehicles to take on key sustainability challenges. The first-of-its-kind initiative will offer pro bono legal assistance to entrepreneurs and community-based non-profits taking on key sustainability challenges across multiple economic sectors, in energy, transportation, and land use.

Aclima is excited to work with this impressive coalition of legal minds to create a fund to receive foundation capital and direct it to bring our environmental intelligence platform to map parts of the world where air quality and pollution data currently doesn’t exist. On behalf of the innovators and change-makers, we’re grateful for the opportunity provided by Grist and the “Lawyers for a Sustainable Economy” commitment.

Together these important announcements and activities will help provide an entirely new class of data about the quality of our environment at the street level and on a global scale. With the latest IPCC report warning that we have 12 years to limit global average temperature warming to a maximum of 1.5°C in order to avoid catastrophic environmental effects, climate action in all sectors is more important than ever.

Aclima is excited to support climate action globally to help non-state actors deliver on their big commitments to reduce emissions with hyper-local measurement of emissions to help identify opportunities and create solutions to meet the targets laid out in the Paris Agreement.