The there are a number of aspects of the environment we’ll be investigating over the course of the trip. The primary ones are:
1) Water quality: thanks to generous support of an unnamed donor, we were each given a water quality testing kit. Each team will take one sample per day, at a location of their choice. We’ll still learning about what data we will get from the kits and what that data means in the context of where we find it.
2) Air quality: thankfully the area surrounding Hangzhou has a number of air quality monitoring stations, and so our goal is to check the Air Quality Index (AQI) via an app on our mobile devices each morning at the start of the walk, midday checkpoint, and evening at the end of that day’s route. We’re curious if we’ll be able to physically tell the difference, and to see what sorts of patterns may emerge depending on location and time of day.
3) Ourselves and the communities we walk through: a key perspective of Planetwalkers is that they understand people are central to the environment. As Dr. Francis suggests in his book, how we treat the environment is a reflection of how we treat each other. What we do to the natural environment is not separate but rather fundamentally based in how we chose to interact with each other and the choices we make. Additionally, we hope that as we interact with local people in the communities we walk through, we will be able to bring their perspectives into our experience as well as share ourselves with them. We will be tracking this human element through capturing moments via our sketchbooks/journals, geotagged photos, videos, and our nightly team meetings and personal blog posts from each team each night.
Our plan is to upload all of our data to our Planetline, but we’ll also post the specific air and water quality monitoring results here.
Air Quality Index
Water Quality Monitoring