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Research on the Polish Smog Alert: the Warsaw “obwarzanek” has worse air than Warsaw

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Activists published a report after examining the air in eight towns near Warsaw. The conclusions are worrying. – Measurements showed evening concentrations of PM10 dust even seven times higher than those found in the center of Warsaw – reported the Polish Smog Alarm.

At the beginning of January, we informed that the Polish Smog Alert had started air quality tests in eight localities of the so-called Warsaw obwarzanek. Measurements were carried out from January 11 to March 9, 2021 in: Otwock, Nowy Dwór Mazowiecki, Brwinów, Chotomów, Milanówek, Zielonka, Sulejówek and Błonie. The collected data was analyzed by technicians from the AGH University of Science and Technology in Kraków, which made it possible to prepare a detailed report on the conducted action.

“In four localities (Otwock, Chotomów, Brwinów and Milanówek), the average PM10 dust concentration from the measurement period was higher than the average for Warsaw. In the others, the average concentration was lower than for Warsaw. In all localities, in the evening and at night, air pollution was much higher than in the capital “- the Smog Alarm reported on Monday.

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More than seven worse than in the capital

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The permissible standard of hourly concentration is 50 μg / m3 (micrograms per cubic meter), but the data published by activists show that, for example, in Chotomów on February 5, the average hourly concentration of PM10 at 9 p.m. was 215 μg / m3 and was six times higher than in the center Of Warsaw. In turn, in Brwinów a day later in the evening the concentration of 306 µg / m3 was recorded, which exceeded the Warsaw measurements by seven and a half times.

“According to the estimates of the Marshal’s Office of the Mazowieckie Voivodeship, there are approximately 1750 solid fuel boilers in Brwinów, and approximately 2200 in the Jabłonna commune (Chotomów). Most of them are ‘smoke boilers’. A similar situation occurs in other towns. For example, in Otwock, an estimated replacement is waiting for 2,581 boilers, in Zielonka -1660 or Nowy Dwór – 1740. It is estimated that there are approximately 35,000-40,000 obsolete boilers in operation in the Warsaw obwarzanek, ‘soot-potters’, the Smog Alarm reported. And he reminded that according to the law in force, these boilers should be decommissioned by December 31, 2022.

“The air quality is terrible”

– During the heating season, the air quality in the evening and night hours is terrible. The comparison of Warsaw and eight localities from the Warsaw obwarzanek where we tested the concentration of PM10 is to the disadvantage of the suburbs. In virtually all localities, we recorded high concentrations in the evening hours. This is, of course, the effect of heating houses with old coal and wood boilers – said Paulina Mroczkowska from the Legionowo Smog Alarm, quoted in the release.

The activists are glad that thanks to this campaign, local officials and local government officials were able to get interested in the problem. – They ask for solutions, consult ideas, express their willingness to meet and discuss solutions, for example, the Błonie Commune. Throughout Mazovia, we have less than two years to replace old stoves without rating plates. The problem of air pollution in the winter applies especially to small towns in the Warsaw obwarzanek, where the replacement of furnaces is just starting or is proceeding too slowly – added Sylwia Jedńska from Warsaw Bez Smogu, quoted in the press release.

As part of the campaign, measurements were taken by activists from local smog alerts: Warsaw Without Smog, Legion’s Smog Alert, Nowodworski Smog Alert and Milan Smog Alert.

Main photo source: TVN24



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