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Open AccessEditor’s ChoiceArticle

Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic Lockdown on Air Pollution in 20 Major Cities around the World

W.M. Keck Science Department, Claremont McKenna College, Pitzer College and Scripps College, Claremont, CA 91711, USA
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Atmosphere 2020, 11(11), 1189; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos11111189
Received: 2 October 2020 / Revised: 29 October 2020 / Accepted: 31 October 2020 / Published: 3 November 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Air Quality)
In order to fight against the spread of COVID-19, the most hard-hit countries in the spring of 2020 implemented different lockdown strategies. To assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown on air quality worldwide, Air Quality Index (AQI) data was used to estimate the change in air quality in 20 major cities on six continents. Our results show significant declines of AQI in NO2, SO2, CO, PM2.5 and PM10 in most cities, mainly due to the reduction of transportation, industry and commercial activities during lockdown. This work shows the reduction of primary pollutants, especially NO2, is mainly due to lockdown policies. However, preexisting local environmental policy regulations also contributed to declining NO2, SO2 and PM2.5 emissions, especially in Asian countries. In addition, higher rainfall during the lockdown period could cause decline of PM2.5, especially in Johannesburg. By contrast, the changes of AQI in ground-level O3 were not significant in most of cities, as meteorological variability and ratio of VOC/NOx are key factors in ground-level O3 formation. View Full-Text
Keywords: COVID-19; AQI; lockdown policy; major cities; NO2; PM2.5; ozone COVID-19; AQI; lockdown policy; major cities; NO2; PM2.5; ozone
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MDPI and ACS Style

Fu, F.; Purvis-Roberts, K.L.; Williams, B. Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic Lockdown on Air Pollution in 20 Major Cities around the World. Atmosphere 2020, 11, 1189. https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos11111189

AMA Style

Fu F, Purvis-Roberts KL, Williams B. Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic Lockdown on Air Pollution in 20 Major Cities around the World. Atmosphere. 2020; 11(11):1189. https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos11111189

Chicago/Turabian Style

Fu, Franck; Purvis-Roberts, Kathleen L.; Williams, Branwen. 2020. "Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic Lockdown on Air Pollution in 20 Major Cities around the World" Atmosphere 11, no. 11: 1189. https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos11111189

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