The lockdown measures implemented to curb the COVID-19 epidemic in Italy reduced human mobility dramatically, which resulted in a marked decline in traffic intensity. In this study, we present the effect of lockdown measures on several air pollutants, particle number size distribution as well as on regional new particle formation (NPF) frequency in the Po Valley (northern Italy). The results show that during the lockdown period, concentrations of nitrogen dioxide (NO2), nitric oxide (NO), benzene (C6H6), and toluene (C7H8) decreased, while ozone (O3) concentrations mildly increased as compared to the corresponding period in 2016-2019. Unlike gaseous pollutants, particulate matter mass concentrations (PM2.5 and PM10) showed no significant changes. The impact of lockdown measures on particle number size distributions were also quite limited. During the lockdown period, the number concentrations of 10-25 and 25-50 nm primary particles were reduced by 66% and 34%, respectively, at the regional background site (Ispra) but surprisingly there was no difference during and after lockdown at the urban background site (Modena). Conversely, the NPF frequency was exceptionally high, 70%, in Modena during the lockdown as compared to values (22-26%) observed for the same period in 2006 and 2009, while NPF frequency in Ispra only slightly increased compared to the same period in 2016-2019. The particle growth rates, however, were slightly lower during the lockdown at both sites compared to other periods. The study shows that a drastic decrease in traffic had little influence on particulate pollution levels in the Po Valley, suggesting that other sources and processes also have a prominent impact on particle number and particulate matter mass concentration in this region.

Emerging Investigator Series: COVID-19 lockdown effects on aerosol particle size distributions in northern Italy / Shen, Jiali; Bigi, Alessandro; Marinoni, Angela; Lampilahti, Janne; Kontkanen, Jenni; Ciarelli, Giancarlo; Putaud, Jean P; Nieminen, Tuomo; Kulmala, Markku; Lehtipalo, Katrianne; Bianchi, Federico. - In: ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE. ATMOSPHERES. - ISSN 2634-3606. - 1:5(2021), pp. 214-227. [10.1039/d1ea00016k]

Emerging Investigator Series: COVID-19 lockdown effects on aerosol particle size distributions in northern Italy

Bigi, Alessandro;
2021

Abstract

The lockdown measures implemented to curb the COVID-19 epidemic in Italy reduced human mobility dramatically, which resulted in a marked decline in traffic intensity. In this study, we present the effect of lockdown measures on several air pollutants, particle number size distribution as well as on regional new particle formation (NPF) frequency in the Po Valley (northern Italy). The results show that during the lockdown period, concentrations of nitrogen dioxide (NO2), nitric oxide (NO), benzene (C6H6), and toluene (C7H8) decreased, while ozone (O3) concentrations mildly increased as compared to the corresponding period in 2016-2019. Unlike gaseous pollutants, particulate matter mass concentrations (PM2.5 and PM10) showed no significant changes. The impact of lockdown measures on particle number size distributions were also quite limited. During the lockdown period, the number concentrations of 10-25 and 25-50 nm primary particles were reduced by 66% and 34%, respectively, at the regional background site (Ispra) but surprisingly there was no difference during and after lockdown at the urban background site (Modena). Conversely, the NPF frequency was exceptionally high, 70%, in Modena during the lockdown as compared to values (22-26%) observed for the same period in 2006 and 2009, while NPF frequency in Ispra only slightly increased compared to the same period in 2016-2019. The particle growth rates, however, were slightly lower during the lockdown at both sites compared to other periods. The study shows that a drastic decrease in traffic had little influence on particulate pollution levels in the Po Valley, suggesting that other sources and processes also have a prominent impact on particle number and particulate matter mass concentration in this region.
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Emerging Investigator Series: COVID-19 lockdown effects on aerosol particle size distributions in northern Italy / Shen, Jiali; Bigi, Alessandro; Marinoni, Angela; Lampilahti, Janne; Kontkanen, Jenni; Ciarelli, Giancarlo; Putaud, Jean P; Nieminen, Tuomo; Kulmala, Markku; Lehtipalo, Katrianne; Bianchi, Federico. - In: ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE. ATMOSPHERES. - ISSN 2634-3606. - 1:5(2021), pp. 214-227. [10.1039/d1ea00016k]
Shen, Jiali; Bigi, Alessandro; Marinoni, Angela; Lampilahti, Janne; Kontkanen, Jenni; Ciarelli, Giancarlo; Putaud, Jean P; Nieminen, Tuomo; Kulmala, Markku; Lehtipalo, Katrianne; Bianchi, Federico
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11380/1284584
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