The metropolitan region of Sao Paulo has improved its air quality over the past 10 years, says a report released on Thursday by the São Paulo State Environmental Company (CETESB).
Since 2008, the mark established by the state decree regulating air quality standards for carbon monoxide has not been exceeded. The limit is 9 parts per million (ppm). However, the average for the region has been between 1.5 ppm and 3 ppm, according to Cetesb’s air quality technician Maria Lucia Guardani.
“In the last 10 years, we have not seen this parameter exceeded. This is a big gain and it shows you an action. Not only in vehicle technology, but also in fuel control and improvement programs, this pollutant today does not represent an environmental concern,” said Maria Lucia.
The results are also positive regarding sulfur dioxide. In 2001, the annual average sulfur dioxide in the metropolis was 14 micrograms per cubic meter (µg / m3). In 2018, the pollutant index was 2 µg / m3.
According to Maria Lucia Guardani, the reduction was made possible by reducing the amount of sulfur in diesel oil. In addition, the technique highlights an important impact, which is the use of less polluting fuels by industries. “Once we have natural gas for fuel in the industry, we replace diesel.”
Particulate matter and ozone
In the case of inhalable particles, in the last two years, the concentration has remained at 29 µg / m3 at the annual average. Although the rate is lower than the 40 µg / m3 set by the state decree, Maria Lucia points out that it is still above the stipulated by the World Health Organization (WHO). “We are well below the limit standard and we have to go further. We would have to be in the range of WHO-recommended standards, which are 20 µg / m3. We have a task to do there,” he emphasized.
Ozone levels exceeded the 140 µg / m3 limit on 18 days over the past year and on 28 days in 2017. According to Cetesb’s technique, the pollutant is influenced by weather conditions and more difficult to control. “We have had better and worse conditions for years,” he said.
Air quality in the state of Sao Paulo is measured by 62 monitoring stations. Of these, 30 are in the metropolitan region of São Paulo. CETESB has programs to control vehicle and industry emissions, as well as to oversee diesel-powered vehicles.
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