Urban Air Quality Mapping in Hanoi, Vietnam


I thought I would do a few Vietnam-related UIM pieces since I’m writing a paper this weekend on the War in Vietnam. This was an interesting article I found about air quality mapping in Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Hanoi) in North Vietnam. According to the article, the air quality is becoming poor due to a re-surging population. The population is expected to increase by 1.5-2 million by 2020 with an 11.2% rise in the economy. Interestingly, the use of cars in Hanoi grew by a factor of 30 from 1995 to 2005, leading to intensely dense, particulate matter suspended within the air.

Clearly, accurate information on the status of air quality is an essential component of Hanoi’s future, as well as for formulating action plans. The monitoring of air quality in Hanoi started in the early 1990s. Interestingly, the investment in air quality monitoring networks in Hanoi has increased far beyond average national levels; seven of the twenty automated Air Quality Monitoring sub-stations (15 stationary and 5 mobile) in Vietnam are located in Hanoi.

The study integrates a variety of graphic devices to analyze air quality. It includes maps which show the highest concentrations of particulate matter in the city parlayed with maps of traffic congestion, air quality cross-referenced with prevailing wind patterns, as well as maps which compare air quality with those of surrounding Asian cities. Other maps are based off of the following studies:

  • “MONRE – Collected hourly concentration of pollutants in the air in 2003 and estimated of traffic emission with resolution of 1 km x 1 km
  • JICA – Monitored 24 hour concentration of pollutant in the air at traffic intersections during August, 2005
  • SVCAP – Operated passive sampler network for January and February, 2007
  • DONREH – Monitored hourly pollutant concentrations at urban centers, industrial areas, and streets  during several months of 2006 and 2007
  • CENMA – Conducted monitoring from March to June 2007 at 6 industrial areas and 13 urban areas.”

The article also comments upon some of the challenges faced by the project in terms of project coordinators regarding public outreach and graphic display:

“In Hanoi , the participation of public on AQM related activities is also limited at this point. The online information from monitoring stations was designed to be disseminated through mass media such as newspaper, radio, television, and internet. However, at present, the operation of electronic information boards on displaying real time pollutants levels at DONREH and Department of Transportation is very sporadic and unreliable. Among all the agencies conducting air quality monitoring, the network of stations run by MONRE is most synchronized since 2002 (updating hourly data from the stations to the database center in Hanoi).”

To read Ngo Tho Hung’s PHD thesis on AQM in Hanoi, go to: http://www2.dmu.dk/pub/PhD_Hung.pdf

For a more concise article, go to: http://www.urbanemissions.info/model-tools/sim-air/hanoi-vietnam.html


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