Monitoring and results

Around 300 monitoring sites across the UK are monitoring the air quality. There are two types of monitoring networks in the UK: automatic and non-automatic networks.

The Automatic Networks produce hourly pollutant concentrations. The data are collected from individual sites by modem. The Automatic Urban and Rural Network (AURN) is the largest monitoring network and is used for reporting to the EU Commission against Air Quality Directives. It includes monitoring stations measuring oxides of nitrogen (NOx),sulphur dioxide (SO2), ozone (O3), carbon monoxide (CO) and particles (PM10, PM2,5). The collected data are rapidly communicated to the public. The non-automatic Networks measure less frequently compared to automatic networks. The samples are collected by physical means and subjected to chemical analysis to calculated the pollutant concentrations.  Monitoring stations are installed in Urban area, Suburban area or Rural area on Traffic stations, Industrial stations or Background stations.

Current measurement and exceedance data from past years regarding the limit values for particulate matter and nitrogen dioxide, but also regarding other air pollutants, can be taken from the database of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).