UK ozone levels still remain high despite VOC and NOx controls

Concentrations of ground-level ozone in the English midlands routinely breach health limits but EU policy is insufficient to solve the problem, says UK research

Smog over BirminghamEU air pollution limits are too lax to prevent unsafe peaks in ground-level ozone, UK scientists report.1 Even with full implementation of current legislation, peak ozone levels would still breach World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines.

Ground-level ozone is formed by the interaction of sunlight, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and nitrogen oxides (NOx). Exposure to peak levels can cause breathing difficulties. The WHO guideline limit is 100 micrograms per cubic metre as the daily eight-hour average level.

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