These Satellite Images Show The Massive Decline in Pollution Over Italy Amid Outbreak and Quarantine

Each and every resident in Italy has been under strict quarantine measures on a national level.

(TMU) — Satellite images have shown a huge decrease in air pollution over the country in a clear illustration of the disruptive effect that the coronavirus has had on Italy. This is because the government struggles to gain an upper-hand on the crisis by placing all residents under strict quarantine measures on a national level.

The images are based on data from the Copernicus Sentinel-5P satellite and they compare air pollution levels, specifically nitrogen dioxide emissions, between January 1 and March 11. According to the images over China in February, they also reveal a drop in pollution.

The European Space Agency (ESA) noted that the reduction has been particularly striking in northern Italy, which “coincides with its nationwide lockdown to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in a press release.

Copernicus Sentinel-5P mission manager Claus Zehner said:

“The decline in nitrogen dioxide emissions over the Po Valley in northern Italy is particularly evident. Although there could be slight variations in the data due to cloud cover and changing weather, we are very confident that the reduction in emissions that we can see coincides with the lockdown in Italy, causing less traffic and industrial activities.

These measurements, globally available thanks to the free and open data policy, provide crucial information for citizens and decision makers.”

ESA’s Director of Earth Observation Programs, Josef Aschbacher added:

“Copernicus Sentinel-5P Tropomi is the most accurate instrument today that measures air pollution from space.

These measurements, globally available thanks to the free and open data policy, provide crucial information for citizens and decision makers.”

Italian authorities reported an additional 349 deaths resulting from the novel virus, raising the total death toll from the outbreak to at least 2,158 at the moment writing this article.

According to the figures from the Italian Civil Protection Department, the number of infections is continuing to rise, climbing 12 percent from Sunday to reach 23,073.

Curbing the lethal spread of the virus, which was initially met with a lack of preparedness and confusion on the part of state authorities and an ill-informed population are the unprecedented and stringent measures taken by the government.

The Italian government approved an economic aid package for up to €25 billion (nearly $28 million USD), including aid for workers who risk losing their jobs and baby-sitting vouchers for parents on Monday in a bid to help struggling Italian businesses and families cope with the prolonged national lockdown.

CoViD-19 first emerged last December in Wuhan; China. It had caused the World Health Organization (WHO) to declare the outbreak a pandemic and had spread to roughly 150 countries and territories since then.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesu, the World Health Organization Director-General told reporters:

“More than 132,000 cases of Covid-19 have now been reported to the WHO from 123 countries and territories; 5,000 people have lost their lives – a tragic milestone.

Europe has now become the epicenter of the pandemic, with more reported cases and deaths than the rest of the world combined, apart from China. More cases are now being reported every day than were reported in China at the height of its epidemic.

… Our message to countries continues to be: you must take a comprehensive approach.

Any country that looks at the experience of other countries with large epidemics and thinks ‘that won’t happen to us’ is making a deadly mistake. It can happen to anyone.”

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