Belgium: ten days above EU ozone standard
According to the Interregional Environment Agency (CELINE-IRCEL), 2018 saw the biggest number of ‘ozone days’ since 2010. Those are days when the quantity of ozone in the air exceeds the EU standard of 180 µg/m³. The limit of NO2 has only been exceeded in two air control stations, while Belgium stays under the EU limit for small particulates for the fifth consecutive year.
The Belgian Interregional Environment Agency (CELINE-IRCEL) has published yesterday its temporary report on air quality for the year 2018. “In spite of an exceptionally warm and abnormally sunny summer, the number of ‘ozone days’ is lower than what could have been expected judging by the climate conditions”, explains the Agency.
The Belgian Environment Agency qualifies as ‘ozone days’ any day of the year where the air quality measures show an amount of ozone in the air exceeding the EU standard of 180 µg/m³. In 2018, it was the case for ten days, six in July and four in August.
Compared to the previous measured years, 2018 sees the most important number of ‘ozone days’ since 2010. There were only five days in 2017 while records show there were 16 in 2003 and 22 in 2006.
Positive air quality evolution
In sight of other air quality data, CELINE-IRCEL sees a positive evolution that can be explained “by the increase in the diesel to petrol and other propulsion systems transition”. The limit of Nitrogen Dioxyde (NO2) of 40 µg/m³ has only been exceeded in two air control stations compared to five last year. They are the Borgerhout (Antwerp ring road) and Art-Loi/Kunst-Wet (Brussels) stations.
In terms of small particulates (PM10), the average daily measure for Belgium remains under the European standard for the fifth consecutive year. “In spite of favourable climate conditions for pollution increase, daily small particulate measures were comparable to previous years’ data”, ends the Environment Agency.