Separating the impact of gradual lockdown measures on air pollutants from seasonal variability

Siegfried Hörmann*, Fatima Jammoul, Thomas Kuenzer, Ernst Stadlober

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Analysis of near-surface measurements at several measuring points in Graz, Austria, reveals the impact of restrictive measures during the COVID-19 pandemic on the emission of atmospheric pollutants. We quantify the effects at traffic hotspots, industrial and residential areas. Using historical data collected over several years, we are able to account for meteorological and seasonal confounders. Our analysis is based on daily means as well as intraday pollution level curves. Nitrogen dioxide (NO2) has decreased drastically while the levels of particulate matter PM10 and carbon monoxide (CO) mostly exhibit little change. Traffic data shows that the decrease in traffic frequency is parallel to the decline in the levels of NO2 and NO.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-92
Number of pages9
JournalAtmospheric Pollution Research
Issue number2
Early online dateNov 2020
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2021


  • Air pollution
  • COVID-19
  • Lockdown measures
  • Meteorological model
  • Traffic emission

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Atmospheric Science


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