juliette bruynseels

Improved air quality in Brussels during Car-Free Day

Sunday’s Car-Free Day in the Brussels Capital Region not only changed the face of the capital’s normally traffic filled streets. The annual event that is the highlight of the European Mobility Week, also had a positive impact on air quality and noise levels in Brussels.

The Car-Free Sunday resulted in an overall improvement in air quality, with a significant decrease in concentrations of several pollutants. Areas around the busiest traffic routes saw the greatest improvements in air quality. 

At the Kunst-Wet measuring station, concentrations of NO and NO2 both decreased by 80% compared with an average Sunday. 

When compared to the concentrations recorded on an average weekday the decrease is greater still.NO and NO2 concentrations were down by 90% and 86% respectively compared with their normal weekday levels. 

Fewer cars, less noise

Fewer cars also meant less noise. The monitoring stations across Brussels observed a big decrease in background noise from traffic during Car-Free Sunday.

Noise levels were down by as much as 90% at monitoring stations the near to motorways such as the E411 in Oudergem and the E40 in Sint-Lambrechts-Woluwe.  Meanwhiler, background 68% noise levels were down along the Houba de Strooperlaan in Laken and the Waversteenweg in Oudergem.


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