And here’s me thinking it had been quite a nice day

I have just come across this air pollution alert that has been issued for the Highlands for today. Sulphur Dioxide is monitored at four sites across the Highlands but according to the table of readings it’s not measured by any of them, ozone is monitored at three sites but strangely not at Inverness. The warning seems to have been issued for high levels of ozone and triggered by readings at Lerwick. I can’t see how can the environment agency can base a regional warning on such scarce data as this? With a moderate southerly flow I can’t see how high ozone levels in the Shetlands could affect the mainland at all. I realise that you can’t judge air quality by visibility but nevertheless visibilities here were excellent today.

And here’s some more data on pollution across Europe that I’ve found. Notice the high ozone levels in a number of cities in Belgium and the Netherlands. I’m no expert, so all I can assume is the low level southerly flow is transporting it all the way up the North Sea, if that’s the case why hasn’t the sensor at Aberdeen picked high levels up as well? Or could it just be a dodgy sensor?

2 thoughts on “And here’s me thinking it had been quite a nice day”

  1. Stephen Saunders

    To add insult to injury, the Shetlands aren’t even shown on the warning map.

    1. Yes, you’re quite right.

      It’s all very odd.

      There is no information on how you should react or what precautions you should take with an ozone alert of 240 µg/m3 in an hour.

      I was reading about it on Wikipedia and ozone not the nice pungent smell you get at the seaside (that’s just rotting seaweed apparently) but is pretty toxic stuff in any concentration.

      What’s worrying is that there are so few (and fully operational) monitoring sites across the UK.
      How do we monitor another Chernobyl if it ever happened?

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