Air Pollution Hunters and the CleanAir@Schools – A Citizen Science Approach: Ellinogermaniki Agogi School monitors Air Pollution levels in the city of Athens
Ellinogermaniki Agogi School is embarking on an exciting citizen science project aimed at monitoring air pollution in the bustling city of Athens. By employing a network of sensors and engaging the students as active participants, this initiative lends itself to unlock the air pollution spatial – temporal patterns at a city level, raising awareness in parallel about air quality issues and fostering environmental consciousness on mobility and health issues.
Hence, students from both the primary and the secondary school will install tubes at their homes and within the school premises to measure air pollution levels and ultimately to create maps and analyze the collected data.
This hands-on approach empowers the students to become agents of change in their community. The project begins with Ellinogermaniki Agogi School providing the students with air pollution monitoring tubes. The students, guided by their teachers and environmental experts, install these tubes in designated locations both at their homes and within the school. The tubes are strategically placed to capture air samples, allowing for an accurate representation of the air pollution levels (Nitrogen Dioxide NO2) at specific sites (in-situ data).
The collected data is meticulously recorded and compiled by the students with the support and the methodological schemes provided by the researchers. To this end, the students draw meaningful insights and correlations. By visualizing the data on maps, they can identify pollution hotspots and understand the spatial distribution of air pollution in Athens and around their school.
The CleanAir@Schools extends beyond data collection and analysis. The students are engaged and actively participate in raising awareness campaigns and alternative mobility and environmentally friendly mobility options by sharing their findings about the regional air pollution levels with the local communities. They collaborate with local authorities, environmental organizations and other schools, organizing public events to share their finding and educate others about the importance of clean air and its impact on well-being. The students present their maps and data analyses at the school fairs, community events, encouraging discussions and promoting pathways for a more sustainable future. Their efforts spark dialogue, encouraging citizens and policymakers to act towards mitigating air pollution in the broader Pallini area and Athens.
By actively involving the students in every step of the process, from data collection, data analysis and results communication to community engagement, CleanAir@Schools not only will raise awareness about air quality but also instils a sense of responsibility and sustainability citizenship. Through their efforts, these young citizen scientists become catalysts for positive change, working towards a greener and healthier urban environment for generations to come.