published on 30 September 2020 in air

Mal’aria 2020 Dossier

Air pollution emergency in Italy: 2019 was also a “code red” year for many large cities in Italy, due to the high concentrations of fine particulate matter and ozone. The “Mal’aria di città 2020” report, the annual dossier on air and noise pollution in urban centres published by Legambiente (an Italian environmentalist association), gives an accurate picture of the situation.

The Legambiente report shows that in 2019, no less than 54 Italian cities exceeded the annual limit of 35 days for particulate matter, Pm 10, with a daily average of more than 50 micrograms per cubic meter, and 25 days for ozone with a concentration of more than 120 micrograms per cubic meter. Due to the climatic conditions and the geographical conformation of the Po basin, the top positions in the ranking are all occupied by cities in northern Italy. Turin has reached 147 days outside the limits (86 for Pm10 and 61 for ozone), followed by Lodi with 135 (55 for Pm10 and 80 for ozone) and Pavia with 130 (65 exceedances for both pollutants).

NB: The total days on which both the Pm10 and ozone limits were exceeded in 2019 are shown in bold script. The cities that exceeded the limit for ozone (25 days per year) only are shown in black; * the cities of Frosinone and Naples have only exceeded the limit for particulate matter (35 days per year)

Frosinone is the first city in Central Southern Italy, in 26th place. Moreover, there are 19 cities (36% of the total) where the data recorded by the ARPA control units exceeded the daily limits on more than 100 days, while in 14 cities the limits were exceeded on more than 50 days.

Considering the last 10 years (from 2010 to 2019), although there has been a decrease in atmospheric pollutants, there are still many critical issues and many actions to be taken to improve the air in Italian cities.

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