New data confirms the improvement in air quality over Europe is a byproduct of the coronavirus crisis. Nitrogen dioxide (NO2) a pollutant that comes principally from the use of fossil fuels takes a sharp dip.
There’s a lot of variability in NO2 from day to day. And that’s real variability, it’s not a measurement artefact, but it’s just due to changes in the weather. So when the wind direction changes, or the wind speed changes, or the stability of the boundary layer changes you will get different readings.
Polluting gases fall rapidly as coronavirus spreads. Eyes in the sky leaves polluters nowhere to hide. Sentinel-5P (S5P) maps have previously released of China and Italy. The new maps of Italy shows marked reductions in the north of country where the Covid-19 outbreak has been most severe.
The time period to see the dip in air pollution concentrations is also quite short.
Will we learn any lessons from quickly air pollution can be cleared from cities and countries?