Once a year, technicians from NIWA’s North Island Field Team don helmets and head lamps to check a network of CO2 sensors in the world-renowned Waitomo Caves. The sensors help make sure that heavy breathing visitors aren’t wrecking the caves’ precious natural structures and microclimate.
Some of the most striking images of lockdown around the world have been the blue skies of cities ordinarily choking in smog. From New Delhi to Los Angeles, Beijing to Paris, the changes were so remarkable they were visible from space.
This web page has a number of air quality experiments kids can try at home. Aimed about 9-year-olds, experiments include using a torch to catch motes, making a dust trap, an air emoji map and a weather bag, and testing lung capacity with balloons.
The first month of data from NIWA’s air quality monitoring project in Arrowtown reveals that air quality has already breached the national standard eight times this winter, including six times in the week from 19 to 26 June – in fact every time the air temperature dropped below freezing.