Foggy days

Foggy days in northern Greece.

If this might look cool from above the fog – see an article here, the situation is not so rosy below the fog blanket.

In fact, fog in winter in or cities and villages means something more like smog (the word comes from smoke and fog, not surprisingly…), which means high Air Pollution levels.

Let’s take the example of Ioannina in Epirus.

Aerial view of Ioannina in winter, Feb 2020

Ioannina lies by Pamvotida Lake and is all surrounded by high mountains. This is unfortunately good recipes for fog in winter. In fact, the high humidity generated by the lake condenses in the cold air which, in conditions of high atmospheric pressure with no wind, gets stuck above the lake and surrounding plain in a dense layer of fog, which also covers the whole the city.

During the previous nights and days the Air Quality in Ioannina was extremely poor, with levels of the dangerous Particulate Matter PM2,5 reaching 400 μg/m3. These levels are hazardous, and especially bad for children and the elderly. Among a COVID-19 pandemic no one should be put in the situation of breathing such a polluted air!

Ioannina has such high pollution levels every winter; they are mostly due to residential heating with wood stoves and fireplaces. The city should seriously consider banning the burning of wood and oil in the region and give financial incentives to citizens to install other much less polluting heating systems instead.

Hazardous levels of Air Pollution in Ioannina the previous foggy days.
Walking by the lake in the fog in the early morning. Ioannina, Feb 2020

Published by cleanairingreece

CleanAir in Greece is an independent site meant to inform the public about the day to day Air Quality in Greece, with advice on how to protect ourselves from the dangers of Air Pollution

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