City pollution levels shoot back up as traffic returns

City pollution levels shoot back up as traffic returns

After almost two months of unprecedented lows in terms of atmospheric pollutants in all major Greek cities, the return of traffic to the streets last week also led to a spike in pollution levels.

According to the most recent Environment Ministry data, there was a sharp increase in Athens in nitrogen dioxide (NO2) to 150 micrograms per cubic meter of air and in the level of suspended particulate matter to 20-50 μg/m3.

Data from the European Environment Agency’s database (which has created a special platform with data on air pollution and the coronavirus) showed that the situation was markedly different a week earlier, with the average nitrogen dioxide level at 29.6 μg/m3.

Two weeks earlier, on April 20-26, the average level of NO2 was 19.8 μg/m3.

In the first week of April it was 20.9 μg/m3, while in the second week of March it had been 43 μg/m3. 

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