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|Air pollution level
|Air quality index
| 25 US AQI
PM2.5 concentration in Usti nad Labem is currently 1.2 times the WHO annual air quality guideline value
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|Sunday, Feb 25
Moderate 60 AQI US
|Monday, Feb 26
Moderate 66 AQI US
|Tuesday, Feb 27
Moderate 67 AQI US
Good 25 AQI US
|Thursday, Feb 29
Moderate 66 AQI US
|Friday, Mar 1
Moderate 72 AQI US
|Saturday, Mar 2
Moderate 61 AQI US
|Sunday, Mar 3
Moderate 67 AQI US
|Monday, Mar 4
Moderate 74 AQI US
|Tuesday, Mar 5
Moderate 80 AQI US
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Ústí nad Labem is a city in the Czech Republic. It is a major industrial centre, an active river port and an important railway junction. It is the capital of its region and district. A census conducted at the beginning of 2021 estimated the population to be approximately 91,200 people.
At the beginning of 2022, Ústí nad Labem was experiencing a period of “Moderate” air quality with a US AQI reading of 70. This United States Air Quality Index number is calculated using the levels of six of the most prolific air pollutants, such as nitrogen dioxide, sulphur dioxide, ozone, carbon monoxide and both sizes of particulate matter, which are PM2.5 and PM10. It can then be used as the metric when comparing air quality in other cities around the world. If data is unavailable for all 6 pollutants, a figure can still be calculated by using what figures there are. The only pollutant measured here was PM2.5 with a level of 21.1 µg/m³.
This level of PM2.5 is just over twice the recommended safe level of 10 µg/m³ as suggested by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as being an acceptable level. Although no amount of air pollution is considered to be safe.
When air pollution is in the “Moderate” bracket the advice would be to remain indoors as much as possible, closing doors and windows to prevent the ingress of more polluted air. Those who are more sensitive to poor quality air should avoid venturing outside until it improves. If this is unavoidable, then a good quality face mask should be worn at all times. All types of outdoor exercise should be avoided until the air quality improves. There is a downloadable app from AirVisual.com which is suitable for all operating systems and gives the latest information regarding air quality in real-time.
Air quality can be very volatile as it is affected by many variables. Looking back at the figures published by IQAir.com for 2020, it can be seen that for six months of the year the air quality in Ústí nad Labem was below the WHO target figure of 10 µg/m³. This occurred in February and from May until the end of September. The cleanest month was July with a 7.3 µg/m³ reading. The month of October saw air quality in the “Good” group with a figure of 11.8 µg/m³. The remaining five months saw “Moderate” quality air with figures between 12.1 and 35.4 µg/m³. The dirtiest month was January with a reading of 22.2 µg/m³.
Records regarding air quality were first kept in 2017 when a figure of 17.0 µg/m³ was recorded. This declined the following year to 18.3 µg/m³. However, it improved in 2019 to 14.1 µg/m³ and again in 2020 when a low figure of 12 µg/m³ was recorded. This low figure was to be expected because it may have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic as many vehicles were no longer in daily use because the offices were closed, in an attempt to halt the spread of the virus. Many factories and non-essential production units were also required to close which removed their emissions from the atmosphere, albeit on a temporary basis. Worldwide, cities reported a much better quality of air due to the general lack of traffic pollution in city centres due to the pandemic.
Air pollution at three intersections in Ústí nad Labem exceeds the limits of 40 micrograms per cubic metre allowed for the concentration of nitrogen dioxide. It can thus pose a health risk. This was shown by measurements carried out by the Centre for Environment and Health in nine regional cities for four weeks in March and April 2019. Current research shows that air pollution with nitrogen oxides poses a risk even at values that meet the limits.
The main sources of nitrogen oxides are high-temperature processes in internal combustion engines of cars and in stationary sources, such as power plants, heating plants, gas boilers or waste incinerators.
The level of air pollution is improving, but only slowly. The biggest problems are caused by airborne dust, benzo (a) pyrene and tropospheric ozone.
The source of pollution is surface lignite mining and its combustion in coal-fired power plants and there are 4 active quarries in the region. The area of the quarries where coal mining takes place is large and dust is removed from unpaved surfaces. Another pollutant is the large chemical plant, where oil refining is carried out.
Air quality in Europe has improved significantly in recent decades, but pollutants still harm our health and the environment. Pollution reduction measures would improve our quality of life, save money on health care, increase worker productivity and protect the environment.
Europe's air is much cleaner than it was about 50 years ago, when the European Union and its Member States began implementing measures on air quality and pollution prevention and control. European, national and local measures have been able to reduce pollution from transport, industry and energy.
According to the State Institute of Public Health of the Czech Republic, the incidence of asthma in children has more than doubled in the last twenty years, which means that every tenth Czech child is now asthmatic! As also confirmed by a UNICEF study, long-term exposure to smog poses a significant risk to the proper development of children's brains. Children then perform worse than their classmates growing up in unpolluted air.
Smog is a man-made air pollution and most often contains smoke, industrial fumes and harmful gases. It is formed under adverse weather conditions, especially during inversion, when pollutants accumulate in certain places in cities and industrial areas. Our health is first affected by smog at the level of the respiratory system: it worsens asthma, causes other breathing problems and often irreversible lung damage.