Air quality in Gold Coast

Air quality index (AQI) and PM2.5 air pollution in Gold Coast

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What is the current weather in Gold Coast?

Weather icon
WeatherScattered clouds
Wind7 mp/h
Pressure1011 mb

live aqi city ranking

Real-time Australia city ranking

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#cityUS AQI
1 Moranbah, Queensland


2 Carlton, Victoria


3 Morwell, Victoria


4 Springwood, Queensland


5 Gretna, Tasmania


6 Mornington, Tasmania


7 Campbellfield, Victoria


8 Emerald, Queensland


9 Geraldton, Western Australia


10 Melton, Victoria


(local time)


live Gold Coast aqi ranking

Real-time Gold Coast air quality ranking

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#stationUS AQI
1 Orpington Court


(local time)




live AQI index

Human face indicating AQI level


What is the current air quality in Gold Coast?

Air pollution levelAir quality indexMain pollutant
Good 8 US AQItrendPM2.5
2 µg/m³trend

PM2.5 concentration in Gold Coast air currently meets the WHO annual air quality guideline value

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How to protect from air pollution in Gold Coast?

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Gold Coast air quality index (AQI) forecast

DayPollution levelWeatherTemperatureWind
Thursday, Jan 20

Good 16 US AQI

Human face indicating AQI level
Friday, Jan 21

Good 21 US AQI

Human face indicating AQI level
Saturday, Jan 22

Good 5 US AQI

Human face indicating AQI level
Sunday, Jan 23

Good 13 US AQI

Human face indicating AQI level

Good 8 US AQI

Human face indicating AQI level
Weather icon78.8°68°
Wind rotating 135 degree

15.7 mp/h

Tuesday, Jan 25

Good 13 US AQI

Human face indicating AQI level
Weather icon78.8°69.8°
Wind rotating 114 degree

8.9 mp/h

Wednesday, Jan 26

Good 14 US AQI

Human face indicating AQI level
Weather icon77°69.8°
Wind rotating 130 degree

17.9 mp/h

Thursday, Jan 27

Good 9 US AQI

Human face indicating AQI level
Weather icon78.8°66.2°
Wind rotating 137 degree

17.9 mp/h

Friday, Jan 28

Good 9 US AQI

Human face indicating AQI level
Weather icon78.8°71.6°
Wind rotating 120 degree

15.7 mp/h

Saturday, Jan 29

Good 13 US AQI

Human face indicating AQI level
Weather icon78.8°73.4°
Wind rotating 119 degree

15.7 mp/h

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Historic air quality graph for Gold Coast

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Reduce your air pollution exposure in Gold Coast


How bad is the air quality in Gold Coast?

The Gold Coast, located around 66 kilometres south-east of Queensland’s capital Brisbane, nestles against New South Wales’ state border, and is Australia’s most populated non-capital city, and the country’s 6th largest city by population overall. Like much of Australia, the Gold Coast experiences generally healthy air quality by global standards, most of the year round. However, the Gold Coast’s air quality can also be susceptible to experience occasional short-term, extreme pollution events such as dust storms and wildfires, as with the rest of the country. The main pollutant of concern for human health within the Gold Coast is particulate matter: this describes tiny airborne particles less than 2.5 or 10 microns in diameter, abbreviated as PM2.5 or PM10 respectively. This is of particular concern in the Gold Coast for two main reasons: firstly, PM pollution is especially hazardous to human health since the microscopic particles can travel deep into the human system when inhaled, causing a range of health effects. Secondly, particulate matter is the pollutant which most frequently exceeds the Australian air quality standards, known as the National Environment Protection (Ambient Air Quality) Measure (Air NEPM), within Queensland.1

Real-time air quality information is displayed within the dynamic Gold Coast air quality map at the top of this page, which also includes live wildfire updates. These, along with a 7-day Gold Coast air quality forecast, can be accessed on-the-go with the IQAir AirVisual air pollution app.

What are the main sources of air pollution in Gold Coast?

The main sources of air pollution in the Gold Coast’s state of Queensland include motor vehicles and industrial activities, in addition to natural sources such as dust storms and bushfires.2 Particulate pollution, Queensland’s most significant air quality issue, is most strongly affected by particles from dust storms, climatic conditions (such as weather), smoke from bushfires, agricultural burning and planned burning, also known as hazard-reduction burns.2

How does the Gold Coast’s air quality compare to the rest of Queensland?

While Queensland’s state government runs a network of government air quality sensors to monitorQueensland air quality, the only government sensor in Gold Coast’s vicinity is in the city’s suburb of Southport. In addition to this, air quality readings for the Gold Coast on the IQAir platform are supported by satellite air pollution data. Gold Coast’s suburb of Southport recorded an annual average PM2.5 concentration of 8.6 μg/m3, ranking as Queensland’s 8th most polluted location out of 19 cities with available data during 2019.3Southport’s PM2.5 pollution in 2019 therefore exceeded the Australian annual air quality standard (NEPM) for PM2.5 of 8 μg/m3, however it does still achieve the World Health Organisation’s slightly less stringent annual guideline of 10 μg/m3.

What are the health effects of air pollution in Gold Coast?

Exposure to Gold Coast air pollution can cause a range of short- and long-term health effects. Short-term effects can include shortness of breath, irritation of the eyes, nose and throat, and aggravation of existing conditions such as asthma. Long term effects of air pollution exposure can include increased risk of developing cardiovascular and respiratory disease, such as chronic pulmonary obstructive disorder (COPD), lung cancer, and premature mortality.

Is the Gold Coast affected by the fires in Australia?

The Gold Coast, like the rest of Australia, is susceptible to experience the consequences of occasional fires: either directly, by blazes reaching the city, or indirectly, by experiencing smoke emitted from nearby fires. Various parts of Australia typically are at highest risk of fire during different times of the year, based on seasonal weather patterns: in general, northern Australia's peak bushfire period is during the dry season of winter and spring. Southern Australia is generally at peak bushfire risk during summer and autumn. Much of Queensland’s east coast, including the Gold Coast, are at highest risk during the spring months, according to the Australian Government Bureau of Meteorology.4

During the summer of 2019-2020, Australia experienced some of its worst fires on record, known colloquially as the “black summer”. This was due to several months of record-breaking temperatures, drought, and low rainfall leading to dry and hot conditions. New South Wales was the state worst hit by wildfires during this time, and theNew South Wales smoke blew northward to affect south-east Queensland, affecting the Gold Coast and neighbouring Brisbane during November 2019, causing air quality to reach an emergency level around the area of south-east Queensland.5 While the direct damages caused byAustralia fires are devastating, the indirect health impacts to people are estimated to be even worse, through exposure to smoke. While the black summer’s wildfires led to a tragic recorded 33 direct deaths, a study by theMedical Journal of Australia estimates that the fire smoke resulted in a further 417 premature deaths, 3,151 additional hospitalisations for cardiorespiratory problems, and 1,305 additional admittances for asthma attacks.6

What is the Gold Coast doing about air pollution?

In addition to current government monitoring, Queensland University of Technology (QUT) also carried out an air quality monitoring project specifically to monitor air quality around the Gold Coast in the run-up to the Commonwealth Games being hosted in the city, during 4th to 15th April 2018. The project, namedKOALA (KnowingOurAmbientLocalAir-quality, involved deploying air monitoring sensors around the Games Village and around the wider Gold Coast area, to monitor particulate and carbon monoxide levels. This was undertaken in the context of how air quality not only has negative impacts on health, but also on athletic performance, since air pollution exposure can negatively affect lung capacity and function.7

The Gold Coast’s City Council is also involved in a range of initiatives to promote cleaner air, and manage sources of air pollutants in the city. These initiatives include supervising and handling cases of environmental nuisance caused by smoke generated through open-air burning when needed, and legally enforcing controls outlined by Australia’sEnvironmental Protection Act regarding dirt and dust from construction. In the latter case, if construction dust is deemed an environmental nuisance, the Council can issue offenders with a Direction Notice with a timeline to resolve the issue. Additionally, the Gold Coast City council also supervises the responsible use of wood heaters, and smoke coming from chimneys. If chimney smoke is deemed an environmental nuisance, the council is legally required to enforce theEnvironmental Protection Act when needed, and offenders will be issued a Direction Notice to resolve the issue, otherwise the offender will be issued a fine.8

+ Article resources

[1] Queensland Government. “Particulate concentrations”. Queensland Government State of the Environment website, February 12, 2020.
[2] Queensland Government. “Particulate concentrations.” Queensland Government State of the Environment website, n.d.
[3] IQAir. “2019 World Air Quality Report”. IQAir website, March 18, 2020.
[4] Australian Government Bureau of Meteorology. “Bushfire weather”. Australian government Bureau of Meteorology website, n.d.
[5] Leonie Mellor & Rebecca Powell. “Queensland fire emergency leaves Brisbane’s air quality worse than Beijing”. ABC News, November 11, 2019.
[6] John Pickrell. “Smoke from Australia’s bushfires killed far more people than the fires did, study says”. The Guardian, March 20, 2020.
[7] Queensland University of Technology (QUT). “The Gold Coast, its air – and KOALAs”. QUT International Laboratory for Air Quality and Health website, n.d.
[8] City of Gold Coast. “Air pollution fact sheets”. City of Gold Coast website, n.d.

Gold Coast air quality data attribution

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