Community Impact and Investment Index Launch
September 22, 2022
Aclima launches Community Impact and Investment Index, developed in Partnership with UrbanFootprint, to Drive Climate Action in American Communities
The new data-driven tool, exclusively available through Aclima Pro, launches during NYC Climate Week and is purpose-built to help public agencies and energy utilities target investments and interventions in vulnerable communities and meet new Federal and State mandates.
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – September 22, 2022 – Aclima, the climate tech leader in hyperlocal air pollution and greenhouse gas measurement and analysis, today announces the launch of the Community Impact and Investment Index, developed in a new partnership with UrbanFootprint, the leading provider of urban, community, and climate risk data and software. The companies have combined their unique data and modeling expertise to create the Community Impact and Investment Index, the first-ever decision-support tool that combines hyperlocal air pollution and emissions data with key environmental justice indicators to help drive investments, interventions, and multi-benefit solutions across U.S. communities. The Community Impact and Investment Index is available exclusively through Aclima Pro, the company’s cloud-based professional analytics platform.
The Community Impact and Investment Index combines Aclima’s hyperlocal air quality and greenhouse gas data with UrbanFootprint’s nationwide urban, climate, community vulnerability, and additional socioeconomic data. The Index empowers governments, energy utilities, corporations, and communities with the information they need to understand where air pollution and climate hazards are highest, and guides where to deploy investments and mitigation efforts to protect frontline communities.
New York State recently announced a groundbreaking partnership with Aclima to map hyperlocal air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions in communities overburdened by environmental pollution. In New York, Aclima Pro will feature a localized version of the Index that is tailored to Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act requirements.
“The environmental justice movement was sparked 40 years ago this month in Warren County, NC,” said Dr. Sacoby Wilson, Associate Professor and Director, Community Engagement, Environmental Justice, and Health (CEEJH) at the University of Maryland and Aclima Advisory Board member. “Since then, many frontline and fenceline communities have been further marginalized due to the lack of investments to address their environmental injustices. As we celebrate the legacy of those who began the environmental justice movement, it is great to see this groundbreaking tool that can be used to identify, prioritize, and microtarget communities of concern with much-needed investments. Hopefully, the Community Impact and Investment Index will act as a decision-support tool that can help impacted residents from communities with environmental justice issues receive restorative justice and obtain the benefits that they deserve.”
With the addition of the Community Impact and Investment Index, Aclima’s customers will now be able to overlay hyperlocal air quality and climate emissions data with critical community resilience and social vulnerability factors. The Index unlocks a broad array of valuable and timely metrics, all unified and standardized at never-before-available levels of resolution. It can be used to target investments and interventions where vulnerability to pollution and other hazards are highest.
“As the Nation prepares to make historic investments in climate action, it is critical that we prioritize and integrate the needs of communities that have been historically underserved and are more vulnerable to the impacts of climate change and pollution,” said Davida Herzl, co-founder and CEO of Aclima. “Through this partnership with UrbanFootprint, we’re able to provide our customers across government and the private sector the tools and insights to ensure that climate action unlocks a more fair and healthy future for all communities.”
In tandem with this product release, Aclima and UrbanFootprint are releasing the results from the first major application of the Community Impact and Investment Index in a San Francisco Bay Area analysis that reveals economic and racial disparities related to air pollution exposure. The analysis uses data from Aclima’s work measuring air quality and greenhouse gases across the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area, where they mapped the region’s 5,000 square miles and 101 cities, and leverages components of the Community Impact and Investment Index. These components of the Community Impact and Investment Index encompass data on race, income, health, pollution exposure, climate impacts, and other socioeconomic factors that historically limit access to support and resources. In May of 2022, Aclima released the first year’s worth of data insights from the air quality and greenhouse gas mapping initiative and made the information publicly available via a free app, air.health. Now, the companies are demonstrating the power and utility of the Community Impact and Investment Index with the release of the disparity analysis.
The Bay Area analysis shows that people of color are exposed to as much as 55% more nitrogen dioxide (NO2 ) pollution than white populations across the region. Lower income populations (those living below two times the poverty line) are exposed to 30% more NO2, which can damage the respiratory tract and is particularly harmful for younger and elderly populations. The results, highlighted in the new joint report, were also the basis of a recent story from The Washington Post.
“It is critical that we understand where communities are most vulnerable to air pollution and climate risks so that we can target interventions and investments where they are needed most,” said Joe DiStefano, co-founder and CEO of UrbanFootprint. “With the new climate bill and a host of other regulations aimed at reducing the harmful effects of pollution and climate change, the need for accurate and detailed data about community vulnerability is more urgent than ever. With Aclima and the Community Impact and Investment Index, we’re providing never-before-available data to public agencies, utilities, and communities, allowing them to pinpoint pollution impacts and target investments to address decades of disproportionate environmental burdens and ensure the long-term livability and health of our communities.”
Aclima’s new Community Impact Index streamlines regulatory compliance, applies an equity lens across decision-making, and targets critical investments where they are needed most.
Aclima is pioneering an entirely new way to diagnose the health of our air and track climate-changing pollution. Powered by our network of roving and stationary sensors, Aclima measures air pollution and greenhouse gases at unprecedented scales and with block-by-block resolution. Our professional analytics software, Aclima Pro, translates billions of scientific measurements into environmental intelligence for governments, companies, and communities. Our free app, air.health, maps address-level air and climate insights for the communities we serve. Aclima is a purpose-driven technology company catalyzing bold climate action that protects public health, reduces emissions, and delivers clean air for all. To learn more, visit aclima.io.
UrbanFootprint Builds Resilience. We serve the world's first Urban Intelligence Platform to public and private-sector organizations taking on the urban, climate, and social equity challenges of the 21st century. The UrbanFootprint Platform unifies previously siloed climate, environmental, urban, and socio-economic data across 160 million US land parcels empowering governments, utilities, financial institutions, and urban planners to answer fundamental resource questions—where to invest, where to deploy resources, and where to optimize for risk, return, and resilience. Never Wonder Where with UrbanFootprint. To learn more about UrbanFootprint, please visit: urbanfootprint.com