Google has found yet another way to get all up in our business. The company is taking its “view cars” – the vehicles that drive around and photograph those cool street views for Google Maps and Google Earth – with monitoring pollution in the places they drive.
But here’s the thing: Google is going to send its pollution data to a nonpartisan organization. Nope, the data will go to the Environmental Defense Fund, a group with its own
Google’s Earth Outreach division has actually been mapping air quality via its Street View cars since 2014, but the information has stayed mostly in-house.
Now, in partnership with the California company Aclima — which builds air-quality sensors that connect to the Internet — and with the Environmental Defense Fund, Google will begin making this information available to researchers. And therein comes the concerns. This research will sooner or later be fed to local and state boards and planners and regulators, who will then cite it to justify new controls.
The Times provides proof of what the EDF seeks to accomplish:
“EDF Sues EPA for Failure to Release Documents about Censored Science Proposal,” one EDF headline blared in August.
Another, from May: “EDF Sues Interior Department for Failure to Release Documents about BLM Waste Prevention Standards.”
Another, from October 2017: “Environmental Defense Fund Sues EPA over Failure to Release Public Records” … “about ethics conflicts, activities of senior leadership, and threats to scientific integrity.”
That one detailed the EDF’s disgust with then-EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, accused of “roll[ing] back vital protections for human health and the environment.”
Yet another, from September 2017: “EDF Sues EPA to Ensure New Toxics Law Protects Public’s Right to Know.”
That’s right. We certainly won’t be able to count on the EDF to merely report the data. They’ll use it to help further that extreme environmental – read “regulatory” – agenda.
Google says it wants to use the data to help cities become “healthier” and “smarter.” But the bottom line is that Google wants to be the environmental tattletale, and they’ve chosen the biggest environmental bully to tattle to.