Pollution over parts of Italy is dramatically falling as the entire country is placed in lockdown in an attempt to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
Data obtained from the European Space Agency’s satellites shows nitrogen dioxide levels have reduced sharply over northern Italy, the region at the epicenter of COVID-19 infections
in the country.
Nitrogen dioxide is a harmful gas emitted when fossil fuels are burnt at high temperatures, most commonly at power plants and in motor vehicles.
The initial lockdown of northern Italy is likely to have led to a slowdown in economic activity as fewer people travel, causing a drop in emissions.
The Copernicus Sentinel-5P satellite operated by the European Space Agency was launched to monitor air pollution levels in cities and towns across the globe.
Italy has since has shut all shops
except food stores, pharmacies, and stores selling “essential” items, to try and stop the spread of COVID-19.