NASA and ICIMOD join forces with regional stakeholders to build clearer picture of air quality in global pollution hotspot

Published On: May 7, 2024 10:06 PM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, May 7: The International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) in Kathmandu has partnered with NASA and USAID to leverage space technology to monitor air quality and empower decision-makers. 

A two-day programme featuring experts from ICIMOD, NASA’s Applied Science Team, and SERVIR Science Coordination Office will train stakeholders across the region in the use of satellite data, including GK2-AMI Aerosol Optical Depth (AOD) data, for air quality monitoring. 

“Regular and long-term monitoring of air quality is extremely important to improve air quality in a region which is currently one of the most polluted in the world,” says Bhupesh Adhikary, Senior Air Quality Specialist at ICIMOD. 

The training will cover multi-satellite blended products, addressing issues like cloud cover, emphasizing blending multi-satellite data for wider coverage and assimilating it into forecasting models.

Participants will learn to assimilate satellite data into air quality forecasting models, providing up to 48-hour forecasts for South Asia and higher resolution forecasts for Hindu Kush Himalaya countries. 

Birendra Bajracharya, Chief of Party of SERVIR-HKH, states, “Poor air quality affects our daily lives. SERVIR’s efforts will contribute to early interventions and policy actions.” 

Around 30 participants from universities, government agencies, and development organizations in Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, and Pakistan will collaborate during the training. They aim to develop solutions to combat air pollution in the Hindu Kush Himalaya region. 

“This training empowers individuals to monitor air quality effectively using available data and tools,” adds Bhupesh Adhikary. “It’s crucial for data-poor regions like HKH.”


Leave A Comment