What’s on : Lectures
How did COVID-19 change the air pollutants we emit?”
Professor Alistair Lewis
National Centre for Atmospheric Science
Further details to follow but this lecture will also cover some of the changes associated with CO2 as well.
“Climate Change mini series”
This lecture will be held on Zoom and invitations will be sent to YPS members and the general mailing list two days before the event. This is a free event but non members can help to cover our lecture programme costs by donating here:
Air quality and visibility improved markedly in cities across the world in 2020 – one obvious effect of Covid lockdowns. Was it significant? Air pollution was first regulated in the 13th century; serious smogs prompted the Clean Air Act of 1956; but since then pollution has increased from many sources including not just traffic, but industry, heating, cooking, cleaning products, and agriculture. Uncontrolled invisible pollution increases the effects of Covid and other respiratory conditions on sufferers. It abounds in the form of particulates, nitrogen dioxide ozone, sulphur dioxide, ammonia, and volatile organic compounds. Most pollutants are short-lived and many decreased during lockdowns. But CO2 did not, and ozone – normally suppressed by vehicle emissions – increased in urban areas.
The impact of 2020 lockdowns on climate was minimal and temporary. To meet the terms of the Paris Agreement on climate change it would need the same reduction in emissions to happen every year.