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Mayor praises launch of London air quality phone app

Phone app to provide detailed forecast of pollution levels around capital, writes Will Date

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson has praised the launch of a smart phone app, released ahead of the London Olympics, which aims to update Londoners and tourists about the levels of pollution around the capital.

The app, designed by the publicly funded airTEXT consortium which is comprised of the London boroughs, Slough borough council, the Greater London Authority, Environment Agency and Health Protection Agency, provides daily pollution forecasts for UV, pollen, temperature and air quality.

The airTEXT smart phone app provides forecasts of air pollution, UV index and pollen

The app can be downloaded for Smart phone, iPad and Android tablets.

Updates to the airTEXT website will also provide a comprehensive set of health-relevant forecasts which address all of these factors for people living, working in and visiting London. AirTEXT has also developed a ‘widget’ to enable their information to be easily featured on other websites in a customised format.

TfL walking maps and information handed out by the Mayor’s team of London Ambassadors volunteers at airports and train stations will also feature information about the airTEXT service.

Mr Johnson said: “I have introduced a range of effective measures to cut pollution, including the first ever age limit for taxis, tougher standards for the London Low Emission Zone and more cleaner buses.

“It is also important that we improve information to help those whose health can be affected when pollution levels are higher. We’ve been delighted to help airTEXT develop their brand new and enhanced information service for Londoners and visitors.â€?

Daily forecasts are generated by the Cambridge Environmental Research Consultants (CERC) using of satellite data, supported by the European Commission’s Global Monitoring for Environment & Security (GMES) programme.

Paul Clift of Islington council, chair of the airTEXT Consortium said: “airTEXT is a publicly funded service and we’re really pleased that the service can now be offered free of charge to more Londoners and visitors to London."

The launch of the airTEXT app follows the launch of the updated London Air smart phone app which provides maps charting air quality levels, and was released earlier this month (see AirQualityNews.com story).

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