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(local time)SEE WORLD AQI RANKING
live AQI index
Unhealthy for sensitive groups
|Air pollution level
|Air quality index
|Unhealthy for sensitive groups
| 104 US AQI
PM2.5 concentration in Torun is currently 7.4 times the WHO annual air quality guideline value
|Friday, Feb 23
Good 33 AQI US
|Saturday, Feb 24
Good 41 AQI US
|Sunday, Feb 25
Moderate 67 AQI US
Unhealthy for sensitive groups 104 AQI US
|Tuesday, Feb 27
Moderate 77 AQI US
|Wednesday, Feb 28
Moderate 70 AQI US
|Thursday, Feb 29
Moderate 55 AQI US
|Friday, Mar 1
Moderate 99 AQI US
|Saturday, Mar 2
Unhealthy for sensitive groups 109 AQI US
|Sunday, Mar 3
Moderate 77 AQI US
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Toruń is a historical city on the Vistula River in north-central Poland and from 1997, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. According to a census conducted in 2020, the estimated population was approximately 200,000 people. Toruń is one of the oldest cities in Poland.
At the start of the fourth quarter of 2021, Torun was experiencing a period of “Moderate” air quality with a US AQI reading of 55. This reading can be used as a reference point when comparing air quality in other cities around the world. Data is collected with regards to the six most prolific air pollutants commonly found and this figure is calculated from there. If information is not available for all six, then a figure can be deduced using the information that is available. In the case of Torun, there were five pollutants recorded. These were; PM2.5 - 14 µg/m³, PM10 - 20 µg/m³, ozone (O3) - 46 µg/m³, nitrogen dioxide (NO2) - 13.5 µg/m³ and sulphur dioxide (SO2) - 5 µg/m³. These figures are quoted in microns per cubic metre.
It should be noted that the level of PM2.5 is just less than one and a half times over the recommended target figure of 10 µg/m³, as suggested as being acceptable by the World Health Organisation (WHO).
With a level such as this, the given advice would be to stay indoors as much as possible and close the doors and windows so as to prevent more polluted air from entering the rooms. Those of a sensitive nature should also remain indoors until the air quality improves. If venturing outside is unavoidable, then a good quality mask should be worn at all times and a limit to exposure should be determined.
There is a downloadable app available from AirVisual which can be found in any app store and is suitable for most mobile devices. This will tell you of the latest levels of pollution which might help to decide whether or not it is safe to go outside.
Air quality can be very volatile as it is affected by many variables. Looking back at the 2020 figures published by IQAir.com, it can be seen that for two months, May and July, Torun achieved records of less than 10 µg/m³ which is the target figure as recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO). The actual readings were 8.4 and 8.7 µg/m³, respectively. The months of June and August saw “Good” quality air with figures of 10.8 and 10.9 µg/m³. The remaining eight months of the year returned “Moderate” air quality with figures between 12.1 and 35.4 µg/m³.
Records pertaining to air quality have been kept since 2017 when a figure of 19.3 µg/m³ was noted. For the next two years, very similar figures were recorded with 19.4 µg/m³ in 2018 and 19.1 µg/m³ in 2019. In 2020, the recorded figure was 14.5 µg/m³ which may not be a true reflection of reality because of the COVID-19 situation. Most office workers were encouraged to work from home and not commute to work on a daily basis. Many cities around the world noted how much cleaner the city air was at that time. Small factories and other production units were closed temporarily, so their emission ceased immediately.
The main source of air pollution in Torun are households, from the chimneys of which carbon dioxide, sulphur oxides, nitrogen oxides, as well as suspended dust (PM) are released into the atmosphere as a result of the combustion of various types of fuels.
Transport, especially diesel vehicles, contributes significantly to nitrogen oxide emissions. Internal combustion engines also have a significant (up to several per cent) share in the emission of suspended dust, as well as a certain share in the total PAH emission.
In many places in Poland, also industrial plants (in particular coking plants, steel mills, oil refineries, coal-fired power plants, but also, for example, chipboard plants) still remain a major source of air pollution, e.g., particulate matter, PAHs, nitrogen and sulphur oxides, but also arsenic and heavy metals such as mercury, cadmium and lead.
Most of the planned projects will include connecting facilities previously heated with coal stoves to municipal heating networks or replacing coal heating with gas. In many cases, buildings where the heat source has been replaced will undergo comprehensive thermal modernization, thus achieving the goal of energy saving and lowering heating costs. Several projects include the installation of solar collectors or heat pumps.
For the air to be cleaner, it is necessary to implement a coherent transport policy focused on the development of public transport. In addition to the new rolling stock, punctuality and frequency of journeys, the possibility of transfers and a pricing policy that would encourage people to resign from traveling by car are also important.
Support for local governments that want to develop public transport is, for example, the " Gazelle BIS - Low-emission collective public transport " program. It is a loan program that can be used to finance, purchase of new trams, trolleybuses or buses with hybrid, electric or gas propulsion. Funds can also be used to allocate bus lanes, build P&R car parks, and traffic management systems (with high priority for public transport).
The elderly, children and people suffering from cardiovascular and respiratory diseases are particularly vulnerable. The health impact of air pollution also depends on the exposure time, meteorological conditions and, of course, the composition of the polluted air.
Dusts less than 10 micrometres in diameter (PM10) are absorbed in the upper respiratory tract and bronchi. Some of them, however, penetrate deeper - up to the lungs. The finest dusts, marked as PM2.5, are especially dangerous - they settle on the walls of the alveoli, impeding gas exchange. Some enter the bloodstream via the lungs, which can be devastating for people with cardiovascular disease. These diseases are the main cause of death in Poland.