Germany expands internet data provision

Nationwide water, air, quality data presented on interactive geographical website

Air and river water quality monitoring results from around Germany will henceforth be posted on the internet, the German environment agency has announced. Aimed mainly at members of the public, the site enables users to access a range of environmental quality information relating to their local area. Data can be accessed through a geographical interface which shows records for up to 4 air pollutants - sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, ozone and particulates - and 40 water-borne pollutants at various monitoring points around the country. In addition, visitors to the site can compare actual measured values to limits prescribed by the national quality standards law or recommended by the World Health Organisation. The new service significantly expands the range of German environmental quality information available on the internet, which was hitherto limited to daily updates of ozone levels during the peak summer months for smog pollution. However, the most recent air and water quality data posted on the site date from 1997. According to the agency, more frequent updating is not possible at present because individual monitoring networks are managed by Germany's states rather than at national level.

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