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NASA highlights unexpected effect of coronavirus

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — NASA has released satellite images showing a significant drop in pollution in China. Results that extend beyond the Wuhan region, the first focus of the epidemic.

The American Space Agency (NASA) has released satellite images comparing pollution in China before and during the COVID-19 epidemic that has been raging there for about two months, highlighting a somewhat unexpected effect of this affection.

Regarding nitrogen dioxide (NO2) pollution – gas emitted by motor vehicles, power plants and industrial installations – these photos reveal a marked improvement in the ecological situation which NASA scientists explain in part by Economic downturn following the coronavirus epidemic.

Nationwide extension

The reduction in NO2 pollution was first observed in Wuhan province, the starting point of the epidemic, but the phenomenon is now spreading to the rest of the country, according to scientists.

“This is the first time I have seen such a dramatic drop in such a large area for a specific event,” said Fei Liu, air quality researcher at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.

The specialist specifies that occasional drops can be noticed during festivals, such as the Lunar New Year, or major events. By the 2008 Olympics, such variations had been noticed around Beijing, “but the effect was mainly localized around this city, and pollution levels increased again after the Olympics ended.”


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