The principles and culture to cultivate the digital environmental monitoring

Conceptually, there are two sides of the same coin – this is the way we leverage the power of digitalisation in environmental monitoring. On the left-hand side (in digitalisation & adaptation diagram below) are the principles and culture to cultivate the digital working environment as well as the need for communication and accessibility through the whole workflow facilitating the operation from the start to the end. On the right-hand side are practices implementing the principles and the workflow set by the management. They are the monitoring and enforcement tasks, the alert and information distribution to the stakeholders involved in the project. Both sides are reflective of each other. The culture and the principles will affect the function-in-charge attitude towards monitoring and enforcement, whether strictly followed or disciplined. Conversely, looking at the opposite side, the alert and information distribution functional elements mirror communication and accessibility.

Photo above: Digitalisation & adaptation diagram

The driving force to adopt and adapt digitalisation into the project, or even to a more considerable extent to the corporate, is the merit that digital environment and workflow deliver to the project and the stakeholders – cost-effective and operation efficiency. Compliance is the core task of why monitoring has to be enforced; automation is the critical digital adaptation activity for the workflow. Manual inspection, data collection, and analysis are demanded when digital tracking and automation are not exercised. Harnessing digitalisation in the working environment and the workflow, the one-stop control centre concept is manifested in the open, customisable monitoring system and monitoring platform, aligning culture, principles, communication, accessibility with monitoring, enforcement, alert, and information distribution.

By: ANewR Consulting Limited, a digital environmental consultant headquartered in Hong Kong since 2008. Our expertise has grown into the context of air and water qualities, noise, green building, waste management, and remediation. With extensive know-how in environmental planning and assessment, feasibility study and policy review, ecological design, monitoring, and audit (EM&A), ANewR has matured to be a leading management consultancy. Standing in the digital transformation reign, ANewR has participated in various environmental digital projects – interactive 3D visualisation, immersive automation virtual environment, Virtual reality, automation system, and monitoring platforms.
(Website:
https://anewr.com, LinkedIn: ANewR Consulting Group, Twitter: ANewR – Everyday Newer, YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnpvmxnR9hbNxytSfBdfV8Q/videos)

The new generation momentum is coming to town

The 24/7 monitoring system, a web-based platform, 5G transmission, and real-time warning are the modern digitalisation adaptation. A remote monitoring system supported by a user-friendly platform empowers authorised users to keep an eye on the status through a spectrum of web-enabled gadgets, including smartphones and tablets even when they are away from the scene. 

The current demand for vibration monitoring sets the future improvement criterion of infrastructure redevelopment, facilitating the safe expansion work during operation hours. The complexity of the expansion project is not merely construction and demolition but also disruptive environmental impacts. Noise, vibration, dust are examples that we need to monitor to avoid the immediate harmful implications for critical operation such as in hospital. The unattended live-to-web monitoring can critically reshape life-and-death circumstances as referring to our real case study. 

Video – What would you do if your hospital is on the brink of rocking?: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_hovQfqfci8

Another enhancement sector is about communicating the environmental impacts through visualisation. By harnessing the virtual reality (VR) with a 3-dimensional (3D) visual perspective, we can add our external idea into the simulated environment to virtual test the practicability. Thoroughly to learn the project environment, the authorities and stakeholders are effortlessly to recognise the potential externality before moving on development projects. 

The recent innovation is the 4D VR experience. Virtually being in the built environment, the user is standing at one point wearing the VR headset and holding the controller to handle the direction and the action in the scene. For example, the user audibly recognises the noise level differences upon the window open and closure by wearing the headphones.

Video – What technology has been used for EPD training: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJfGvfmMfNU

The discovery of automated monitoring, 3D visualisation, 4D virtual reality advancement is not without reason. This is the smart city solution in mitigating environmental concerns to appraise alternatives, evaluate the effectiveness of different scenarios, and inspect the big picture of the overall design performance. Stakeholders are encouraged to express ideas and further review the project outcome with the direct digital illustration method.

Photo above: Concept of engaging stakeholders by 3D and 4D in environmental projects for development

To learn about 3D digitalisation applications, see “The 3D environmental impact assessment”; 4D virtual reality training practice, see “The 4D movement in environmental discipline”, and post-project stakeholder engagement, see ”What is the acoustic window story”.

Video – What make us unique as your trusted environmental + digital consultancy partner in Hong Kong and UK: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=asYkKA8ewfU

By: ANewR Consulting Limited, a digital environmental consultant headquartered in Hong Kong since 2008. Our expertise has grown into the context of air and water qualities, noise, green building, waste management, and remediation. With extensive know-how in environmental planning and assessment, feasibility study and policy review, ecological design, monitoring, and audit (EM&A), ANewR has matured to be a leading management consultancy. Standing in the digital transformation reign, ANewR has participated in various environmental digital projects – interactive 3D visualisation, immersive automation virtual environment, Virtual reality, automation system, and monitoring platforms.
(Website: https://anewr.com, LinkedIn: ANewR Consulting Group, Twitter: ANewR – Everyday Newer,
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnpvmxnR9hbNxytSfBdfV8Q/videos)

How digitalisation changes the day-to-day engagement

Three-dimensional visualisation empowers cities with inclusion capability. We see social inclusion by facilitating stakeholders’ comprehensive engagement to contribute their viewpoints on infrastructural schemes to investigate the best to dwindle the potentially far-reaching impacts.

Why digitalisation?

The 3D illustration is an inside-out approach. It breaks through the conventional 2D plane to a 3D virtual reality illustration, bringing the knowledge and information to the stakeholders’ realisation. Integrating all data into one virtual reality paradigm renews the way of communications. It empowers diverse functions involved in the process – facilitators, catalysts, supporters, partners, knowledge providers, knowledge stimulators, and change agents. Successfully demonstrating the concepts allures social, knowledge, and experience inclusion. Inclusion triggers meaningful dialogue, discovering possibilities, and advancing problem-solving. Harnessing the potentials of modern information and communication technologies (ICT) by stakeholders engagement and environmental projects development from start to continuous refinement unveils the right interpretation of development investment we face each day and afterward.

What journeys are you going through now?

By: ANewR Consulting Limited, a digital environmental consultant headquartered in Hong Kong since 2008. Our expertise has grown into the context of air and water qualities, noise, green building, waste management, and remediation. With extensive know-how in environmental planning and assessment, feasibility study and policy review, ecological design, monitoring, and audit (EM&A), ANewR has matured to be a leading management consultancy. Standing in the digital transformation reign, ANewR has participated in various environmental digital projects – interactive 3D visualisation, immersive automation virtual environment, Virtual reality, automation system, and monitoring platforms.
(Website: https://anewr.com, LinkedIn: ANewR Consulting Group, Twitter: ANewR – Everyday Newer,
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnpvmxnR9hbNxytSfBdfV8Q/videos)

The contemporary e-public engagement

Photos above: 3D Retrofitting of Noise Barrier on Long Tin Road and Ma Wang Road, Hong Kong. The upper one shows the mitigated noise effect, and the lower photo shows the unmitigated noise effect of a retrofitting barrier project. Video – Can you imagine the environmental impact in your mind? – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31QtHAfV5nA

The contemporary e-governance facilitates information exchange with communicable, interactive platforms. Remarkably, the digital trend is on the way to provide user-friendly and digitised civil services for the project proponents and the general public, from the informational website, online registration program, to searchable open database. How do we utilize this digitalisation in environmental discipline? ANewR Consulting Limited has the solution.

The visualised, virtual reality (VR) illustration is incredibly practical for a metropolitan situation. One of the city’s striking models is Hong Kong’s three-dimensional (3D) retrofitting barrier impact digital visualisation – ANewR’s prime example of implementing digitalisation into environmental discipline to turn the historical practice perfect for the stakeholder engagement throughout the project.  

Conventionally, the environmental specialist has assessment results in a pile of reports in figures, tables, and drawings generated by acoustic software. Entering the digitalisation age, the 3D noise-level visualisation for a retrofitting barrier assessment project successfully brings out the calculated impact in the pragmatic project location. The proposed project’s assessment value is programmed to develop the 3D graphics and animations in a 3D VRML file format. The proportionate images of the buildings, the surroundings, and retrofitting barriers draw stakeholders’ actual environment for results review. It is clear to follow the computed noise impact in the mitigated and unmitigated scenarios through a few button clicks. In the 3D animation, the multi-coloured indication exhibits different noise levels, based on the Calculation of Road Traffic Noise. Incorporating environmental practitioners’ knowledge with innovative digital skills contributes to an understandable expression of the technical proposal. 

The move to digitalisation in environmental discipline is hitting two main targets. First, the visualisation reaches the aim of public consultation – stakeholder engagement through a digestible communication digital method. The general public, who is not assumed to be sufficiently proficient in retrieving the coordinate and matching charts of results and various documents to get a particular location point’s noise level, is now empowered to understand the project effect. Also, reviewing the calculation records used to be time-consuming and possibly prolonging the project time-span. Providing visualisation aid for project proponents and decision-makers improves project evaluation and study efficiency. 

Integrating data into one visualised illustration renews the way of communications. ICT contributes to data accessibility. It empowers diverse functions involved in the process. Harnessing the potentials of modern information and communication technologies (ICT) from start to continuous improvement in environmental project development unveils the right interpretation of development investment we face each day and afterward.

The idea of digital visualisation is not to discard the tradition; this enhances the generation’s practice to deliver coherent, more favorable results to all. The upcoming is a 4-dimensional generation, strengthening 3-D visual capability with sound effects to create an authentic learning journey. Partaking in the Environmental Protection Department of the HKSAR training project, ANewR has applied the fundamental knowledge of noise and acoustic window and balcony products in the built environment into digital tools to create the VR experience with sound effects. Visually being in the built environment with the acoustic products installed, the user is standing at one point wearing the VR headset and holding the controller to handle the acoustic products’ open or closure. The user audibly recognises the noise level differences in various scenarios; their acoustic expertise is now turning from imaging the data to a useful background experience. 

ANewR apprehends the visual digitalisation in noise impact with interactive animation. Next is how to apply an immersive, automatic virtual environment and the smart monitoring and assessment automation systems in environmental projects to engage stakeholders to a greater extent.

Video – Visualising environmental data using 3D/4D VR tech: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ib8gO5B0Nc0

By: ANewR Consulting Limited, a digital environmental consultant headquartered in Hong Kong since 2008. Our expertise has grown into the context of air and water qualities, noise, green building, waste management, and remediation. With extensive know-how in environmental planning and assessment, feasibility study and policy review, ecological design, monitoring, and audit (EM&A), ANewR has matured to be a leading management consultancy. Standing in the digital transformation reign, ANewR has participated in various environmental digital projects – interactive 3D visualisation, immersive automation virtual environment, Virtual reality, automation system, and monitoring platforms.
(Website: https://anewr.com, LinkedIn: ANewR Consulting Group, Twitter: ANewR – Everyday Newer,
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnpvmxnR9hbNxytSfBdfV8Q/videos)