Satellite image of a particularly valuable perspective on PM2

Satellite data offer a particularly valuable perspective on PM2—small particles deriving mostly from burning fossil fuels and biomass, which can harm human health—because ground instruments may be unavailable or offer limited information, as is the case in China. With that in mind, researchers at Columbia University’s Earth Institute and Batelle Memorial Institute have developed maps based on satellite data that depict annual PM2.5 exposure in all of China’s provinces.