Further high pollution levels forecast this week

South west of England braced for high levels of particulate matter on Thursday and Friday (April 16-17) this week

Particulate matter air pollution is again forecast to reach high levels in parts of England this week, according to the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

While levels are currently low across much of the country, the Department is forecasting localised pockets of moderate air pollution across England tomorrow (April 14) before large parts of the south west are hit by high levels of particulates on Thursday and Friday (April 16-17).

The latest forecasted episode is likely to coincide with the government’s final Supreme Court hearing on Thursday (April 16) in a case brought against it by environmental group ClientEarth over levels of nitrogen dioxide pollution.

However, across Scotland air pollution is forecasted to remain low, although some areas in the Highlands, Orkney Islands and Shetland Islands may see levels reach moderate towards the end of the week.

The situation is similar across Northern Ireland, which may only see pollution levels increase to moderate from low in the likes of Derry, Omagh and Strabane by the end of the week.

It follows high and very high levels of pollution seen across much of England — particularly the south east — just last week (see story), and another bout of high pollution in the UK in March (see story).

Meanwhile, Defra’s UK Air website maintained by contractor Ricardo-AEA is still offline following a cyber attack last week (see story).

The site includes information on UK air quality as well as forecasting and health advice, but it has now been offline for almost a week, although Defra has said it hopes to get it back up and running again “as soon as possible”.


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