Enhancing air quality website and data delivery service in New South Wales

Expanding the scope and flexibility of our air quality data management, reporting and delivery system through collaboration and technology innovation.

Air quality data acquisition, reporting and data delivery are a core business of the Climate and Atmospheric Science Branch (CAS), Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE). Such data and information are used by government agencies, research scientists, industry professionals and general community groups for assessments and decisions on actual or potential impacts of air pollution on the environment and human health.

The project

The current Air Quality Monitoring System (AQMS) used by CAS has been in operation since 2008, and a more advanced and modern system is necessary to meet the increasing demand for reliable and dependable air quality data and information on New South Wales.

The Enhance Website and Data Delivery (EWADD) project is designed to ensure that all NSW Government data and information on air quality is freely available, and easily/ intuitively accessible by the community, researchers and decision makers. The project was commissioned in 2019 and will be delivered over 3 years, to design and implement new ways for air quality data management, reporting and data delivery. It will progressively expand and enhance the AQMS capabilities in collaboration with a range of internal and external partners, to deliver an enhanced end-to-end data management system for the Air program.

Aims of the project

The EWADD project aims to implement a system for air quality data management, data reporting and data delivery that is fit-for-purpose, modular and adaptable to changing business needs and customer expectations. The project will:

  • reproduce and or enhance the current system’s functionalities to be more robust, stable and flexible, including additional internal data management and stewardship capabilities
  • make available simple and intuitive means of providing wider and more flexible access to data, to both internal and external users, and the general community
  • incorporate disparate streams of input data other than those currently sourced from traditional air quality monitoring monitors [such as Internet of Things (IOT) type monitors and sensors].

Project objectives

The key project objectives are to:

  • develop and publish an open-access Application Programming Interface (API) for air quality and meteorology data delivery services
  • update the air quality data pages to provide access to 1-hour and 1-minute air quality and meteorology data
  • expand the website to include near-real time data updates from the DustWatch network.

Project phases

The EWADD project will allow for enhanced public access to air quality monitoring data, alerts and forecasts through the DPIE website via updated reporting tools, and supplementary tools for internal data management. These will be delivered as 2 major project phases to:

  • build enhanced public-facing air quality data/information service facilities, such as a new website and an air quality Application Programming Interface (API) and
  • implement a new system for data management and web reporting functions (the Air Quality Monitoring System, AQMS).

Progress updates

API release

We have been working with a number of organisations to test a pre-release version of the Application Programming Interface (API). Feedback has been embraced for a June 2020 release of the production API.

Updated website

DPIE have an existing website to support the timely display and communication of NSW air quality data. As part of the EWADD project this website is being redesigned to be mobile-responsive and have a modern information display and reporting environment. Additional stakeholder feedback received as a result of the unprecedented 2019-2020 NSW bushfires is being embraced into the design.

Data system replacement

The key component for this project is to implement a new data management and reporting system (the Air Quality Monitoring System, AQMS). Following an initial Expression of Interest of the current AQMS market, we are now developing a Request for Tender.