Dramatic global events and the climate crisis have made cities acutely aware of the need to increase resilience in all areas: energy, health, food, manufacturing and production, supply chains and more. We are constantly and sharply reminded of how much these areas are linked and the knock-on effects they can have on each other.
While it is impossible for a city to control everything, it’s clear that you can’t manage what you don’t measure. That’s why cities are increasingly investing in smart technologies that help them better understand what is going on and how environmental changes impact critical areas such as public health, energy resilience, transportation, and general liveability.
The need to provide accurate data is driving the development of the environmental sensor industry. Research house MarketandMarkets estimates the environmental monitoring market will be worth almost USD 18 billion by 2026, up almost a third from USD 14.5 billion in 2021, mostly due to augmented public awareness and stricter government regulations around air and noise pollution, or the growing need to manage extreme weather events such as rainstorms, flooding, or heat waves.
As effective as these sensors are, though, deploying and connecting them is not enough. Pressure is coming from all sides for cities to not just collect more environmental data, but to correlate and interrogate pieces of information across different areas to identify patterns and trends, and consequently take action.