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Czech Air Quality Showed Improvements In 2023, With Several Pollutants Never Exceeding Limits

Air quality in the Czech Republic was good in 2023, according to a summary report released by the Czech Hydrometeorological Institute (CHMU) yesterday. Concentrations of most pollutants fell again to their lowest levels in a decade, and for the first time ever, no pollutant limits were exceeded for fine dust particles PM10 and PM2.5. 

As in previous years, pollutant limits for nitrogen dioxide (NO2), sulphur dioxide (SO2) and carbon monoxide (CO) were not exceeded, partly thanks to favourable meteorological and dispersion conditions, according to a preliminary assessment presented by CHMU.

“The relatively good air quality in the Czech Republic, with the exception of ground-level ozone (O3), was mainly due to significantly lower concentrations of air pollutants during the winter period, when favourable meteorological and dispersion conditions prevailed in terms of air quality “, the meteorologists said.

Due to the energy crisis, some households burned more solid fuels, but their negative impact on the air was mitigated by the continuation of measures to improve air quality, including replacing boilers in households and switching to alternative heating methods such as heat pumps.

6% of stations recorded excess values ​​over the limit for ground-level ozone last year. However, O3 concentrations depend on meteorological conditions, especially during the warmer seasons, and were therefore above average during last year’s exceptionally warm and very dry September.

For the fourth time in a row, the limit for annual average NO2 concentration was not exceeded at any station in the Czech Republic, and the limits for SO2 and CO were not exceeded anywhere either.

As for the suspended particles PM10, the 24-hour limit was exceeded at no station of automatic measurement for the first time since the 1990s, and for the PM2.5 particles, the 24-hour limit was not exceeded for the first time since this limit’s introduction in 2005, which was further tightened in 2020, CHMU wrote in a press release.

There were three smog situations last year due to high PM10 concentrations, lasting a total of 105 hours. One smog situation was in effect for 16 hours due to high concentrations of ground-level ozone.

According to meteorologists, dispersion conditions in the Czech Republic were significantly better last year compared to the average from 2013 to 2022. They were slightly worse on only 22 days and unfavourable on three days. The largest number of days with good dispersion conditions were in May, June, July and November, the lowest number in February. Unfavourable dispersion conditions were recorded only in January and February, CHMU added.

Czech Air Quality Showed Improvements In 2023, With Several Pollutants Never Exceeding Limits
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