There might be something good coming out of this pandemic after all.

Life Advancer has previously reported some of the environmental effects of the coronavirus lockdown, including amazingly clear waters in Venice canals. But the impact is much huger than that.

Satellite images provided by the European Space Agency demonstrate a drastic drop in air pollution over Italy and China. Levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) over the regions that were affected by COVID-19 most of all appear to be significantly lower in comparison with the prior pandemic period.

The sadly famous city of Wuhan, which is believed to have given a start to the coronavirus pandemic, went through particularly strict lockdown measures in January and February. The city’s population is over 11 million and there are hundreds of industrial facilities in the area.

NASA says that eastern and central China demonstrates a 10-30% drop in air pollution levels as a result of the lockdown. In the image below, you can see the difference in just a two-month time frame:

china drop in air pollution coronavirus

As for Italy, its northern regions witnessed the highest spike in COVID-19 cases and deaths in March. At the same time, these areas have the densest industrial activity in the country.

Maps show that NO2 levels have decreased by 40% over northern Italy, compared to the last year.

italy drop in air pollution coronavirus

Due to social distancing measures, citizens all over the world were required to stay in as much as possible. We had to forget about traveling, going out, and visiting our loved ones. Businesses and the whole industries were suspended.

Since nitrogen dioxide is a byproduct of car emissions and industrial activities, it makes sense why its levels in the atmosphere have dropped so drastically.



While there are both proponents and opponents of climate change and global warming, the only thing is sure: this pandemic gives humanity a number of lessons. Maybe it’s time we switch to more eco-friendly sources of energy and start to treat Mother Nature with more respect.

Anna LeMind, B.A.

Copyright © 2014-2020 Life Advancer. All rights reserved. For permission to reprint, contact us.

Leave a Reply