(local time)SEE WORLD AQI RANKING
live AQI index
|Air pollution level||Air quality index||Main pollutant|
|Unhealthy|| 169 US AQI||PM2.5|
|PM2.5|| 90.4 µg/m³|
PM2.5 concentration in Esfahan air is currently 18.1 times above the WHO annual air quality guideline value
|Monday, Dec 6|
Unhealthy 152 US AQI
|Tuesday, Dec 7|
Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups 107 US AQI
|Wednesday, Dec 8|
Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups 121 US AQI
Unhealthy 169 US AQI
|Friday, Dec 10|
Moderate 55 US AQI
|Saturday, Dec 11|
Moderate 68 US AQI
|Sunday, Dec 12|
Moderate 69 US AQI
|Monday, Dec 13|
Moderate 54 US AQI
|Tuesday, Dec 14|
Good 47 US AQI
|Wednesday, Dec 15|
Moderate 53 US AQI
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Esfahan which is often also known as Ispahan, Spahan, Sepahan or Hispahan, is a major city in Iran located in the Greater Isfahan Region. It is 406 kilometres south of the capital city of Tehran and is the capital of Isfahan Province. It has an estimated population of around 2 million people which ranks it as the third-largest city in Iran.
At the beginning of 2021, Esfahan was experiencing poor quality air with a US AQI reading of 113. This is based on recommendations from the World Health Organisation (WHO). Concentrations of the pollutants were as follows: PM2.5 - 40.4 µg/m³ and ozone (O3) - 40.4 µg/m³.
For 4 months of the year in 2019, Esfahan experienced air quality categorised as being “Unhealthy for sensitive groups” with figures between 35.5 and 55.4 µg/m³. The remaining 8 months recorded a “Moderate” level of pollution with figures between 12.1 and 35.4 µg/m³.
According to historic figures provided by the IQAir website, the air quality is not getting any better. In 2018 it recorded a figure of 27.6 µg/m³ whereas in 2019 the average figure was 32.5 µg/m³.
It is estimated that 80 per cent of the city's pollution is due to vehicle emissions with the remaining 20 per cent citing industrial pollution. Other estimates suggest that motorcycles single-handedly account for 30 per cent of air and 50 per cent of noise pollution in Esfahan.
The central city is in need of action for curbing air pollution. Experts mostly blame the situation on mismanagement, lack of an integrated air pollution reduction schemes and smog-inducing dilapidated gas-guzzlers.
Isfahan Province is one of the main industrial hubs in Iran. Environmentalists have previously complained that factories in and around the province totally disregard environmental standards.
In late 2019, hundreds of Iranians became short of breath after the autumn rains and the subsequent air pollution led to the closure of primary schools in the capital, Tehran, which is among the worst in the world in terms of air quality, as well as the closure of schools in 12 other cities, most notably in Albers.
The concentration level of fine particles PM2.5 was 109 µg/m³ on average over a 24-hour period, according to a government website.This level is four times higher than the maximum permissible level of 25 µg/m³, on average over 24 hours, according to WHO recommendations.
The level of concentration in fine particles reached between 150 µg/m³and 200 on Saturday, which is the first working day of the week in Iran, and also on Sunday, according to the official IRNA news agency.
The authorities in the Iranian capital adopted a rotating traffic system based on the registration number of vehicles (doubles or odd), heavy vehicles were banned from driving completely, and construction and exploration activities in mines were stopped.
Every year between November and February, air pollution reaches its highest levels in Tehran, a metropolis with a population of about 8.5 million and located at an altitude ranging between 1,400 meters and 1,800, due to a phenomenon called "thermal inversion," meaning that cold air in high-altitude areas becomes trapped by the warmer air and stays closer to the ground.
The most prominent sources of pollution are heavy vehicles, motorcycles, oil refineries and thermal plants, according to a report published by the World Bank last year.
Air pollution kills about 30,000 people every year in Iranian cities, according to what state media reported earlier this year, citing a health ministry official.
One of the causes of air pollution in Tehran is the nature of its geographical location between a mountain range, which leads to lowering the rate of precipitation and reducing the movement of winds for long periods, which prevents the movement of polluted particles in the air, and keeps the gases from vehicles and industrial exhausts trapped in Tehran's airspace.
30 renovated buses have recently been added to the city transport fleet as well as buses accessible for people with disabilities. Another scheme being implemented is “air pollution watch”, which is aimed at cracking down on high-emission vehicles. In this scheme, citizens can report high-emission vehicles either by calling a dedicated number or using a particular mobile app.
Burning fossil fuels has a significant effect on indoor air quality. Concentrations of sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and carbon monoxide were measured in five houses in Esfahan focusing attention on kitchens as a source of indoor pollutants. The houses were selected because of the difference in the types of fuel used to both cook and heat the space in colder months. As would be expected, kitchens using mainly electricity as their source of energy showed virtually no pollutants in the kitchen. In non-electric kitchens, the pollutants were considerably higher than recommended levels.
Harmful air pollutants can lead to cardiovascular diseases such as artery blockages leading to heart attacks (arterial occlusion) and destruction of heart tissue due to oxygen deprivation, leading to permanent heart damage (infarct formation). The mechanisms by which air pollution causes cardiovascular disease are thought to be the same as those responsible for respiratory disease: pulmonary inflammation and oxidative stress.
Naturally, not everyone is affected to the same extent by polluted air. But even healthy people can soon succumb to the effects. Respiratory irritations or breathing difficulties are experienced when exercising outside. The extent of the effects depends on the current health status, the type of pollutant and concentration level and length of exposure to the polluted air.
High levels of polluted air can cause immediate effects such as aggravated respiratory illnesses and cardiovascular disease. The heart and lungs soon become stressed as they must work harder in order to supply the required amount of oxygen which is needed. Cells within the respiratory system can soon become irreversibly damaged.
Longer-term exposure leads to the accelerated ageing of the lungs with loss of capacity and a decrease in efficiency. It also leads to a greater possibility of developing asthma, bronchitis, emphysema and some types of cancer.