Sharing knowledge, best practices and tools for air quality management and short-lived climate pollutant reduction through a specialized community of practice with participants from Latin American and African cities.

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In Latin America, over one-quarter of all urban residents (26%) and nearly one-fifth of the total population (19%) are exposed to unhealthy air quality by World Health Organization standards. Similarly, Africa experiences some of the worst air quality and some of the most severe health consequences from air pollution in the world: In 2019, air pollution was the second leading risk factor for death across Africa.

In Latin American and African cities, however, local authorities may not have the necessary tools to develop and execute air management protocols to properly manage these issues.

The Air Quality Community of Practice is made up of representatives from cities across Latin America and Africa. It is designed to strengthen the capacities of local authorities in these cities so that they can develop, execute and evaluate air quality management tools in a way that improves the health of the most vulnerable populations and reduces environmental inequities.

This community promotes knowledge exchange by sharing successful air quality tools as well as best practices and management strategies from cities around the world.

Technical sessions, resources and webinars produced for the Air Quality Community of Practice are available on The CityFix Learn and on YouTube in English and Spanish.

Interested in joining the community of practice? Please fill out this application.


Latin America & Africa Air Quality Community of Practice Initiative

This Community of Practice is supported by WRI’s Air Quality team, which strives to provide cities with access to tools and methodologies that improve and accelerate air quality management and reduce short-lived climate pollutants (SLCP). WRI works to strengthen the capacity of local authorities to use and evaluate these tools and methodologies, promoting the development of programs and actions that benefit the health of vulnerable populations and reduce environmental inequities.

The Air Quality Community of Practice initiative is developed through monthly technical sessions, with topics tailored to the local needs of participants. In the first phase of this project, WRI identified and addressed seven themes among participating cities and countries:


  • Air quality forecasting: Methodologies for generating air quality forecasts and  evaluating their performance in cities.
  • Monitoring networks: Evaluating differences between hyperlocal air quality monitoring networks and reference stations.
  • Air quality data: Exploration of platforms and tools that facilitate data visualization and interaction with databases.
  • Air quality indicators: Design and development of impact indicators (especially for air quality and public health) to assess the effectiveness of different environmental and/or urban interventions and policies.
  • Use of satellite products: Use of satellite measurements that provide air quality information based on the spatial distribution of emission sources.


  • Climate and clean air: Perspectives and experiences in the design and implementation of integrated air quality and climate change action plans.
  • Participatory science: Theory and experiences highlighting the value of citizen participation for the generation of local air quality information.

The first phase of this project closed with the South-South Dialogue | Lessons Learned and What's Next for the Air Quality Community of Practice. The second stage will be a part of the CanAIRy Alert project, beginning March to May 2023.


Background and Participants

The Air Quality Community of Practice was originally formed as part of CityAQ, a project codeveloped by WRI and NASA to provide resource-constrained cities in Latin America with reliable, locally relevant, accessible air quality forecasts.

In its second stage, the Community of Practice will be part of WRI’s CanAIRy Alert initiative. CanAIRy Alert builds on CityAQ, expanding the project’s reach to bring air quality monitoring and forecasting tools to four pilot cities in Africa.

Between Cohort One under CityAQ and Cohort Two under CanAIRy Alert, the Air Quality Community of Practice encompasses 93 total members spanning:

6 countries

  • Mexico
  • Colombia
  • Ghana
  • Kenya
  • Senegal
  • Uganda

3 cities and 1 metropolitan area in Mexico

  • Guadalajara Metro Area
  • León
  • Monterrey
  • Salamanca

1 city in Colombia

  • Bogota

4 cities in Africa

  • Accra
  • Kampala
  • Nairobi
  • Mombasa

6 states in Mexico

  • Mexico City
  • Jalisco
  • Guanajuato
  • Nuevo León
  • State of Mexico
  • Querétaro


The Air Quality Community of Practice is part of the WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities and is coordinated by the Air Quality teams in WRI Mexico and WRI Africa.

For more information, contact Beatriz Cardenas and George Mwaniki.



Session Recordings:


Cover Image by: Clique Pictures