A closer look at Brentford’s air pollution

03_09mar_NO2.png  03_09mar_PM10.png

Air Quality Brentford are taking a closer look at the results from the air quality recorded at the A4/Glenhurst Road monitor. The results are available for all to see at http://www.airqualityengland.co.uk, select LB Hounslow and create graph. We think it’s important for more local residents to be aware of the high peaks in NO2 and PM10 emitted by diesel vehicles throughout the day. To help raise awareness we are making our own screengrabs of the results and publishing these on twitter every day @agreenerlondon

Air quality is measured as an annual average and the legal annual average for Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) is 40 ugm and hourly there should be no more than 18 exceedances of 200 ugm per year. The legal annual average for Particulate Matter (PM10) is 40 ugm-3 and over a 24 hour period no more than 35 exceedances in a year over 50 µg m-3.

The example above shows the results for 9 March, a beautifully sunny day but the levels of NO2 only dipped below 40ugm at 4am and midnight – this is however still legal as the limit hasn’t gone over 200ugm. This toxic gas is invisible but you can probably smell or taste it in the air. Both Nitrogen Dioxide and Particulate Matter are harmful to humans, these very small particles are breathed in to the lungs and even enter the bloodstream affecting our immune system, and we need to start taking a little more notice of these very high levels of pollution. The levels of Particulate Matter on this day were illegal as they were over 50ugm.

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