Wednesday, January 13, 2021 (HealthDay News)-During the first COVID-19 blockade, two types of air pollution were reduced in cities around the world, but one increased, a new study found. ..
Researchers evaluated changes in air pollution levels of nitrogen dioxide, ozone, and fine particles (PM2.5) during lockdown in 11 cities in Beijing and Wuhan, China. Milan; Rome; Madrid; London; Paris; Berlin; New York; Los Angeles; and Delhi, India.
After considering the effects of the weather, researchers found that the decrease in nitrogen dioxide was smaller than expected, while the ozone concentration increased.
Nitrogen dioxide is a major air pollutant from automobile emissions and is associated with respiratory problems. Ozone is also harmful to health and damages crops, the study authors say.
In addition, researchers found PM2.5 levels dropped during the blockade in all cities except London and Paris. PM2.5 can exacerbate health problems such as asthma and heart disease.
The findings were published in the journal on January 13th. Science Advances..
Zongbo Shi, a professor of atmospheric biogeochemistry at the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom, said the rapid decline in economic activity provided a unique opportunity to study the effects of interventions on air quality.
“Emissions changes associated with early blockade restrictions have resulted in rapid changes in air pollutant levels, but the impact on air quality is more complex than we expected and more than we expected. It was small, “he said in a college news release.
Shi pointed out that changes in the weather could mask changes in air quality emissions.
“Importantly, our study provided a new framework for assessing air pollution interventions by separating the effects of weather and seasons from the effects of changing emissions,” he explains. Did.
Roy Harrison, a professor of environmental health who co-authored the study, said: [nitrogen dioxide] Beneficial to public health-Activities, especially traffic restrictions, [nitrogen dioxide] In all cities. ”
Harrison said that if similar restrictions were applied, the average annual nitrogen dioxide levels in most of the areas surveyed would comply with World Health Organization air quality guidelines.
For more information
The World Health Organization details air pollution and health.
Source: University of Birmingham, News Release, January 13, 2021
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