Romania's Environmental Guard to use drones to monitor air quality, pollution levels
Romania's Environmental Guard intends to buy almost 50 drones equipped with state-of-the-art sensors that will be used to monitor air quality and pollution levels across the country, the institution's head Octavian Berceanu told Digi24. Data collected by the drones will also be used to create maps of risk areas.
"We need drones. We will buy drones with air quality sensors, gas sensors, thermal sensors [...], and multispectral sensors," Berceanu said.
The multispectral sensors will help the authorities determine the level of vegetation degradation, he explained.
After purchasing the drones, the Environmental Guard also plans to use the collected data to create maps of risk areas and issue pollution alerts.
Air pollution is a major issue in Bucharest and other big cities in Romania. In mid-March, for example, the capital has recorded worrying air pollution levels, with many of the sensors of an independent air quality monitoring network showing high particulate matter PM 2.5 and PM 10 pollution levels across the city. At that time, Environmental Guard representatives said the main cause of the spike in air pollution was the illegal burning of used car tires in localities around Bucharest.
According to a report released in October 2020, pollution costs EUR 166 billion per year in Europe. In Bucharest, the annual cost of air pollution is EUR 6.3 billion - the second-highest after London (EUR 11.4 billion). The per capita cost in the Romanian capital is slightly over EUR 3,000.
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