Global meteorological data forecast company AccuWeather announced on January 24, 2022, that it has acquired Paris-based environmental technology company Plume Labs for an undisclosed amount, effective immediately. The deal is AccuWeather’s 15th acquisition since its founding 59 years ago.
Plume Labs is best known for empowering people and organizations worldwide with the most accurate air quality maps and data globally thanks to its industry-leading AI and ML air pollution forecasts and its Flow device, the award-winning personal air pollution sensor.
Earlier AccuWeather and Plume Labs commenced a successful partnership in January 2020 as air pollution emerged as an increasingly prevalent problem globally.
By integrating Plume’s superior air pollution data into AccuWeather forecasts initially up to 96 hours (4 days) ahead, air pollution information and insights are accessible.
At the time, AccuWeather announced it held a part ownership stake in Plume Labs, further demonstrating its confidence in the company and the quality and importance of its data.
Plume Labs pioneered AI and ML for air quality forecasting
Plume Labs pioneered the air quality forecasting industry by advancing geospatial machine learning and artificial intelligence technologies to map and predict air pollution.
It provides the most accurate data with the broadest coverage, with current conditions and forecasts for the entire world at a market-leading resolution of 0.2 to 2 km, down to the street level in U.S. and European urban areas.
The Plume Labs data platform computes 70 billion data points every hour to report current levels of particulate matter (PM2.5, PM10), nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and ground-level ozone (O3), forecasts for the next 168 hours (7 days), and local air quality index (AQI) levels to map the real-time health risks from air pollution around the world.
The acquisition will accelerate AccuWeather’s investments in AI for weather predictions, a critical area of research to make forecasts ever more accurate for a changing climate.
“The integration of Plume Labs’ data and insights into AccuWeather’s digital properties marked an important moment for the AccuWeather user base and community, introducing an enhanced layer of relevant, everyday insights as another data point to help people make the best health and wellness decisions possible, alongside the Superior Accuracy of AccuWeather forecasts,” said Steven R. Smith, AccuWeather President.
Innovation is required to have a better quality of living
Air pollution levels change dramatically over time and space—five to eight times within a city block, and even more indoors than outside. Having the right information at the right time makes it possible to avoid dangerous pollutants.
Simple actions like opening a window while cooking, taking a different route to work, or delaying a run by a few hours have been shown to reduce personal exposure by as much as 90 percent. Reduced exposure can save lives and improve health for 92 percent of the world population.
“Air quality plays an intrinsic role in AccuWeather’s mission of saving lives and helping people prosper, and this acquisition will help us provide users and customers with an even more personalized experience as well as a 360-degree understanding of the impact of weather on their wellness,” added Smith.
The acquisition of Plume Labs’ best and most accurate air quality data marks another expansion of AccuWeather’s global capabilities, including Huafeng-AccuWeather, its joint venture in China, and Sky Motion Research in Canada.
“Seven years ago, David Lissmyr and I launched Plume Labs to make air quality information accessible to everyone,” said Romain Lacombe, Founder and CEO of Plume Labs.
“Since then, our work has helped galvanize the fight for clean air by making the health impact of climate change personal. Joining forces with AccuWeather now is an extraordinary opportunity to amplify our impact at planetary-scale and help 1.5 billion people avoid air pollution around the world,” he added.