From Iceland — Heavy Air Pollution In Reykjavík

Heavy Air Pollution In Reykjavík

Published November 26, 2019

Sam O'Donnell

The city of Reykjavík is suffering from heavy air pollution. The concentration of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) is high in Reykjavik today, according to reports from the measuring station at Grensásvegur, and this trend has been ongoing for a few days now.

At 16:00 yesterday, the hourly value of NO2 at Grensásvegur was 184 micrograms per cubic metre, and it reached a maximum level of 237 at 18:00. As of 10:00 this morning, the value is at 182.

Nitrogen dioxide pollution comes from automobile emissions and is greatest in the morning and afternoon, when traffic is heavy.

According to the website of the City of Reykjavik, continued rain and frost are expected today, and will continue over the next few days. Therefore, it is highly likely that nitrogen dioxide concentrations will once again exceed the health limits at Grensásvegur.

Nitrogen dioxide causes irritation of the lungs and airways. Those with sensitive respiratory tracts and children should avoid outdoor activities for the time being and limit exercise in the vicinity of major traffic jams. The public is encouraged to reduce the use of private cars, make better use of public transport, carpool or use other environmentally friendly modes of transport. Now would be a very good time for Strætó to start offering those free bus rides.

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