Friday, November 19, 2010

3D Forecasts of Air Quality – PREV’AIR

PREV’AIR -An Operational Forecasting and Mapping System for Air Quality in Europe (11 page pdf, Bulletin of American Meteorological Society, Jan. 2009)

Also discussed here: PREV’AIR

Key Quotes:

“[French] local authorities in charge of air pollution can now inform the public and take emergency decisions related to air pollution control not only on the basis of measurements, but also by accounting for numerical forecasts”

“three main functions of the PREV’AIR system:

  1. The “forecasting” function delivers forecasted atmospheric concentrations of ozone, particulate matter (PM10 and PM2.5), and nitrogen oxides, simulated throughout Europe at low resolution (0.5° × 0.5°) and over France with a higher resolution (0.15° × 0.1°).

  2. The “analysis” process uses available near-realtime observations to build the “analyzed” maps that are considered as the most realistic description of pollution patterns.

  3. The “performance evaluation” function of the system uses observation data that are routinely acquired for continuous evaluation of the model forecasts, with descriptive indicators given online. Every day, statistical skill scores (bias, errors, percentage of errors lower than a certain level, and correlation) are calculated and updated on the PREV’AIR Web site”

“In case of a pollution episode, when concentrations exceed the regulatory thresholds, PREV’AIR forecasts are broadcast on television channels to enhance public information.“

“system provides real-time information about air pollutant concentrations throughout Europe, with a focus on France, which is particularly relevant to health prevention in acute pollution episodes.“

“Air quality forecasting and mapping is an efficient tool for authorities in charge of air quality management. Anticipating pollution events with concentrations exceeding regulatory levels allows them to inform the general public and to decide emergency control measures.”

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