National Statistics

Air quality statistics

An annual update on concentrations of major air pollutants in the UK.

Documents

Details

This publication summarises the concentrations of major air pollutants as measured by the Automatic Urban and Rural Network (AURN). This release covers annual average concentrations in the UK of:

  • nitrogen dioxide (NO2)
  • particulates (PM2.5)
  • particulates (PM10)
  • ozone (O3)

The release also covers the number of days when air pollution was ‘Moderate’ or higher for any one of five pollutants listed below:

  • nitrogen dioxide (NO2)
  • particulates (PM2.5)
  • particulates (PM10)
  • ozone (O3)
  • sulphur dioxide (SO2)

These statistics are used to monitor progress against the UK’s reduction targets for concentrations of air pollutants. Improvements in air quality help reduce harm to human health and the environment.

Air quality in the UK is strongly linked to anthropogenic emissions of pollutants. For more information on UK emissions data and other information please refer to the air quality and emissions statistics GOV.UK page.

The statistics in this publication are based on data from the Automatic Urban and Rural Network (AURN) of air quality monitors. The UK-AIR website contains the latest air quality monitoring data for the UK and detailed information about the different monintoring networks that measure air quality. The website also hosts the latest data produced using Pollution Climate Mapping (PCM) which is a suite of models that uses both monitoring and emissions data to model concentrations of air pollutants across the whole of the UK. The UK-AIR website also provides air pollution episode updates and information on Local Aurthority Air Quality Mangement Areas as well as a number of useful reports.

The monitoring data is continuously reviewed and subject to change when issues are highlighted. This means that the time series for certain statistics may vary slightly from year to year. You can access editions of this publication via The National Archives or the links below.

Please answer 4 short questions (opens in Google Forms to help us make the publication more valuable to you.

The datasets associated with this publication can be found here ENV02 - Air quality statistics.

2019

Air Quality Statistics in the UK, 1987 to 2018

2018

Air Quality Statistics in the UK, 1987 to 2017

2017

Air Quality Statistics in the UK, 1987 to 2016

2016

Air Quality Statistics in the UK, 1987 to 2015

2015

Air Quality Statistics in the UK, 1987 to 2014

2014

Air Quality Statistics in the UK, 1987 to 2013

2013

Air Quality Statistics in the UK, 1987 to 2012

2012

Air Quality Statistics in the UK, 1987 to 2011

2011

Air Quality Indicators – 2010 final UK Results

2010

Air Quality Indicator for sustainable development: 2009 final results

2009

Air Quality Indicator for sustainable development: 2008 final results

2008

Air Quality Indicator for sustainable development: 2007 final results

Defra statistics: environment

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Published 23 April 2014
Last updated 23 September 2020 + show all updates
  1. Amendment to text of attachment entitled Summary.

  2. This publication has been updated to address accessibility issues. Changes include modification of alt text, improvement to the colour contrast of figures, removal of merged cells in tables, and tweaks to formatting such as subscripting and HTML links. Some of the text has been reworded to improve clarity and understanding, but no changes have been made to the statistics since the initial publication in February.

  3. Figures for 2019 published

  4. Release including 2018 data published

  5. Annual figures released

  6. New release with figures up to 2016 published.

  7. Annual update.

  8. new figures for 2014 published

  9. Annual update to publication.

  10. First published.

  11. Air quality statistics - 2012 data published.

  12. Addition of the Pre-release announcement published February 2013.