Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

The Effect of Lockdown Period During Covid-19 Pandemic on Air Quality in Sydney Region, Australia

Version 1 : Received: 2 March 2021 / Approved: 3 March 2021 / Online: 3 March 2021 (10:53:58 CET)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Duc, H.; Salter, D.; Azzi, M.; Jiang, N.; Warren, L.; Watt, S.; Riley, M.; White, S.; Trieu, T.; Tzu-Chi Chang, L.; Barthelemy, X.; Fuchs, D.; Nguyen, H. The Effect of Lockdown Period during the COVID-19 Pandemic on Air Quality in Sydney Region, Australia. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 3528. Duc, H.; Salter, D.; Azzi, M.; Jiang, N.; Warren, L.; Watt, S.; Riley, M.; White, S.; Trieu, T.; Tzu-Chi Chang, L.; Barthelemy, X.; Fuchs, D.; Nguyen, H. The Effect of Lockdown Period during the COVID-19 Pandemic on Air Quality in Sydney Region, Australia. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 3528.

Journal reference: Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 3528
DOI: 10.3390/ijerph18073528

Abstract

In early 2020 from April to early June, the metropolitan area of Sydney as well as the rest of New South Wales (NSW, Australia) experienced a period of lockdown to prevent the spread of Covid-19 virus in the community. The effect of reducing anthropogenic activities including transportation had an impact on the urban environment in term of air quality which is shown to have improved for a number of pollutants, such as nitrogen dioxides (NO2) and carbon monoxide (CO), based on monitoring data on ground and from satellite. Besides primary pollutants CO and NOx emitted from mobile sources, PM2.5 (primary and secondary) and secondary ozone (O3) during the lockdown period will also be analysed using both air quality data and modelling method. The results show that NO2, CO and PM2.5 levels decreased during the lockdown, but O3 instead increased. The change in the concentration levels however are small considering the large reduction in traffic volume of ~30%. By estimate the decrease in traffic volume in Sydney region, the corresponding decrease in emission input to the WRF-CMAQ (Weather Research and Forecasting - Community Multiscale Air Quality Modeling System) air quality model is then used to estimate the effect of lockdown on the air quality especially CO, NO2, O3 and PM2.5 in the Greater Metropolitan Region (GMR) of Sydney. COVID-19 lockdown period is an ideal case to study the effect of motor vehicle and mobile source contribution to air pollutants such as those listed above in the GMR.

Keywords

Covid-19 lockdown; air quality; Greater Metropolitan Region of Sydney; WRF-CMAQ

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