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    Major global cities see air pollution increases post-lockdown

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    As the world slowly revolves back to normality, some cities are still benefitting from lockdown-related improvements to air quality, while others are slipping back into a haze.

    That’s according to new research collated by Global Workspace Provider Instant Offices, which revealed air pollution has increased six out of the top fifteen major cities since June.   

    LOCATION PRE-LOCKDOWN

    FEB-MARCH

    AVERAGE PM 2.5 LEVELS

    PEAK LOCKDOWN

    APRIL-MAY

    AVERAGE PM 2.5 LEVELS

    POST-LOCKDOWN

    JUNE-JULY

    AVERAGE PM 2.5 LEVELS

    % INCREASE OF AVERAGE PM2.5 LEVELS
    New York 35 22 33 33.33%
    Cape Town 26 30 39 23.08%
    Madrid 55 50 63 20.63%
    Melbourne 26 34 41 17.07%
    Los Angeles 39 40 48 16.67%
    Beijing 103 98 104 5.77%

    Beijing, Los Angeles, Melbourne, Madrid, Cape Town and New York saw a double-digit increase in PM2.5 levels since lockdown ended.

    New York City saw a considerable dip in PM2.5 levels during peak lockdown when pollution levels plunged by 59%. As things in the city slowly start to return to normal, however, there has been a 33% increase in air pollution as PM2.5 levels spring to almost pre-lockdown levels.

    During peak lockdown, air pollution reduced in Hong Kong by 16%, in Sydney by 13%, and in Singapore by 14%, with the trend continuing into post-lockdown as Hong Kong saw a further 127% reduction in air pollution, followed by 35% in Sydney and 23% in Singapore. Brisbane saw an increase in pollution during lockdown but has since seen an improvement of almost 10%.

    During peak lockdown in April and May, air pollution increased in Melbourne, Cape Town and Los Angeles, by 24%, 13% and 3% respectively. The trend continued into June and July as lockdowns began to relax, with Melbourne air pollution increasing by 17% followed by Los Angeles at 16%, and Cape Town, with a huge 23% increase.

    In Europe, Madrid has not seen air quality improvements. As lockdown eased in the city in June and July and commuters hit the roads again, air pollution rose by 21%.

    For all the information on the analysis that Instant Offices collected around the top cities with the biggest rise in Air Pollution Post-Lockdown, you can find this here: https://www.instantoffices.com/blog/featured/air-pollution-cities-post-lockdown/

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    AUTHOR

    Stuart O'Brien

    All stories by: Stuart O'Brien