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Scientists flight plan to measure UK air pollution

Scientists will measure UK's air pollution levels, with sensors on several sites across the country. Picture: Getty

Scientists will measure UK's air pollution levels, with sensors on several sites across the country. Picture: Getty

SCIENTISTS are taking to the skies to measure the amount of greenhouse gas emitted in the UK.

• Edinburgh University researchers to lead manned aircraft mission to measure air pollution levels

• Four-ear-project will track greenhouse gases against 80 per cent pollution cut target

A team led by University of Edinburgh will man a research aircraft equipped with sensors to measure carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide levels.

Samples will also be taken from sensors on a North Sea ferry and several towers, including the BT Tower in London.

The four-year project will track progress on UK Government targets to cut pollution by 80 per cent by 2050. It will measure greenhouse gas emissions from industry including from landfill and agriculture.

Tracking their movements is expected to help researchers improve their understanding of how the gases change the climate.

Results will be compared with observations from European, US and Japanese satellites.

Project leader Professor Paul Palmer, of University of Edinburgh’s school of geosciences, said: “This will deliver robust greenhouse gas emissions estimates from the UK and the world by bringing together comprehensive data and talented scientists who can make sense of it. This should help track progress towards tackling climate change.”

The study is funded by the Natural Environment Research Council and will be carried out with the universities of Bristol, Cambridge, Leeds, Leicester and Manchester, the NERC Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, the Met Office and the Science and Technology Facilities Council’s Rutherford Appleton Laboratory.

 

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