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Sat Mar 14, 2020, 01:28 AM

Pollution is plummeting in Italy in the wake of coronavirus, emissions data show.

'What already happened in China now appears to be happening in another country facing a dire outbreak and a broad lockdown aimed at halting its spread.

First, it happened in China. Now, Italy.

The coronavirus struck hard, and authorities responded with sweeping interventions to keep people from spreading the disease further. As citizens hunkered down at home, businesses and roads suddenly fell empty and silent. One startling result: a decline in air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.

The Washington Post this week analyzed data from the European Space Agency’s Sentinel-5P satellite, which can measure concentrations of greenhouse gases and other pollutants in the lower atmosphere. It shows that between Jan. 1 and March 12, concentrations of nitrogen dioxide, or NO2, fell drastically, especially over hard-hit northern Italy.

Nitrogen dioxide is not one of the major greenhouse gases linked to climate change. But it is produced from combustion — by cars, power plants, and other industrial sources. So it serves as a proxy for other emissions that warm the atmosphere. It also is a pollutant that can increase the risk of asthma, inflammation of the lungs and other harmful health conditions. Several experts told The Post that the changing concentrations probably reflect the decline of driving in particular, in a country in which more than half of cars burn diesel.

“I guess this is mostly diesel cars out of the road,” Emanuele Massetti, an expert on the economics of climate change at Georgia Tech University who has studied Italy’s climate policies, said in an email.

“I expect pollution to drop even further as the particles in the atmosphere (concentration) get either dispersed or absorbed,” he continued. "In a few days, they will enjoy the cleanest air ever in northern Italy.”'>>>

https://www.washingtonpost.com/climate-environment/2020/03/13/italy-emissions-coronavirus/?

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Reply Pollution is plummeting in Italy in the wake of coronavirus, emissions data show. (Original post)
elleng Mar 14 OP
flibbitygiblets Mar 14 #1
elleng Mar 14 #2
C Moon Mar 14 #4
SamKnause Mar 14 #3

Response to elleng (Original post)

Sat Mar 14, 2020, 01:57 AM

1. Silver linings

We'll see different possibilities now. I hope.

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Response to flibbitygiblets (Reply #1)

Sat Mar 14, 2020, 02:03 AM

2. Yes, even tho

'Climate advocates agree, saying the current catastrophe is not the way any reasonable person would envision the world lowering its carbon footprint. In addition, the outbreak has halted meetings to plan for public protests for climate action in the coming months, as well as the global push to get nations to commit to more ambitious emission reduction plans at a key U.N. summit scheduled for this fall.

Moreover, the drop in emissions is expected to be temporary. “This will have just a minor effect of global concentrations of CO2, unless it leads to a really long depression of the world economy,” Massetti said.'

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Response to flibbitygiblets (Reply #1)

Sat Mar 14, 2020, 03:56 AM

4. Thumbs up.

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Response to elleng (Original post)

Sat Mar 14, 2020, 02:05 AM

3. Global dimming.

Damned if you do and damned if you don't.

Less pollution particles in the air causes the temperature to rise faster.

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