National Statistics

Emissions of air pollutants

An annual publication covering the emissions of some important air pollutants.

Documents

Emissions of air pollutants in the UK, 1970 to 2014

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Trends in UK sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, non-methane volatile organic compounds, ammonia and particulate matter (PM10, PM2.5) emissions

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Detail

This publication covers UK emissions of sulphur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), non methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOCs), ammonia (NH3) and particulate matter (PM10 and PM 2.5).

Chronic exposure to PM contributes to the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases and lung cancer. Particulate matter can have either a cooling or a warming effect on climate, and also has an important role in the impacts air pollution has on the ecosystem. In addition to combining with particulates in the atmosphere, NOX, SO2 or NMVOCs can react together to form low level ozone which at higher levels can cause breathing problems, trigger asthma, reduce lung function and cause lung diseases.

The National Atmospheric Emissions Inventory contains further information on air pollutant emissions and methodology.

The Devolved Administrations’ Air Quality Pollutant Inventories is published in September and will be available from: NAEI

Emission factors for PM2.5 have been updated to estimate the emissions levels for this pollutant in the National Atmospheric Emissions Inventory. This has led to a slight reduction in the pollutant emissions for the 1970-2013 time series. The scale of the revisions is minor and there is no impact on the overall trend which continues to be downwards. There is no impact on previous versions of the Statistic as these are wholly superseded each year; ongoing improvements to the estimation methodology mean the time series is often revised. The figures given in this document and the supporting dataset show the revised estimates.

For further information please contact:
enviro.statistics@defra.gsi.gov.uk
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