Based on the latest report of the European Environment Agency, Budapest is the only city in Europe where the amount of nitrogen dioxide in the air exceeds the level measured before the coronavirus epidemic. Many say that this is because the government allowed free parking in the Hungarian capital, during which more people started to use their cars and sat in traffic jams in the last few weeks.
According to mfor.hu, air pollution decreased globally during the quarantine since fewer people used their cars, and many continued their work from home. As a result, for example, one could see the peaks of the Himalayas in India or the Fuji in Japan from even hundreds of kilometres.
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Clean Air Action Group said, however, that this trend reversed in Hungary, and based on the data of the different monitoring stations in Hungary, the level of nitrogen dioxide gas started to increase again in July, even though it was below the 2019 data last month. Interestingly,
the quantity of the PM2,5 particles (particulate matter) responsible for most of the early deaths
did not decrease during the epidemic. In contrast, it increased in the last few months.
Furthermore, based on the latest report of the European Environment Agency, Budapest is the only city in Europe where the amount of nitrogen dioxide in the air exceeds the level measured before the coronavirus epidemic. That is surprising because alternative transport modes became very popular during the pandemic. For example, Budapest, like many other European cities like Brussels or Milan, took many downtown roads from the cars to give them to the cyclists.
However, in Hungary,
the government allowed free parking in Budapest until July 1 which was unnecessarily long
and, as a result, car traffic increased significantly. Mfor.hu thinks that this is the reason behind the shocking discovery of the European Environment Agency.
In most European countries air pollution increased after the first phase of the virus, but they are still below the 2019 levels. It is also a global trend that people would not like to use public transport. For example, the number of people using the London underground system is still 12 pc lower than before the epidemic. The trend is sorrowful since it will shortly result in worse air quality which weakens our immune system allowing coronavirus to break through.