And breathe! Czech air quality drastically improved in 2020, says new report

The Czech Hydrometeorological Institute has published a preliminary assessment of air quality for 2020.

Tom Lane

Written by Tom Lane
Published on 25.01.2021 11:37 (updated on 25.01.2021)

The Czech Hydrometeorological Institute has published a preliminary assessment of air quality for 2020 which shows that concentrations of air pollutants fell again, with good to very good air quality in all regions across the year.

According to the press release, concentrations of some particles reached low levels in 2020 at most measuring stations with some of the lowest results in the entire history of measurement.

The month of February made a significant contribution to the decrease in concentrations of air pollutants when very low numbers were recorded. This month was very unusual in terms of the influence of meteorological and dispersion conditions and favorable for air quality.

The other months, including the summer period, also showed better air quality, either due to higher precipitation, good dispersion conditions, or lower average temperatures leading to lower ozone concentrations across the summer.

The reduction of air pollution concentrations is also due to fewer emissions thanks to the measures implemented to improve air quality such as the replacement of boilers, the progressive renewal of the vehicle fleet, and the technical implementation for the reduction of emissions at large sources. 

Leona Vlasáková, from the Czech Hydrometeorological Institute, told Novinky:

"The month of February deviated from the usual standard last year. It rained a lot, the temperatures were above average with mostly good dispersal conditions and windy weather. This was an ideal combination that has a positive effect on the content of air pollutants. The year 2020 was favorable overall in terms of air pollution and the subsequent dispersion of pollutants, thanks to above-average temperatures and sufficient precipitation."

The decrease in concentrations was also affected by measures associated with the state of emergency, which was declared due to the spread of the coronavirus.

They are still assessing the extent to which the state of emergency and the restrictions implemented across the year have contributed to this.