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Long-term Development of Air Quality 2020

Summary

How clean is the air in Berlin? And what was it like 40 years ago? Find answers here! Since 1975, air quality has been documented and analysed unceasingly as part of the Berlin Clean Air Measurement Network (BLUME) and with additional measurements.

The BLUME measurement network (as of July 2020) consists of 17 fixed stations, a meteorological station and a mobile unit, the “measurement bus”. Every five minutes, each station transfers pollutant levels to the Control Centre in Brückenstraße (borough of Mitte). They form the basis for further calculations and analyses.

The results are encouraging: Berlin has managed to reduce emissions significantly since 1989. Nitrogen oxides, for example, have dropped by 73 percent, sulphur oxide by a whopping 96 percent. This is partly due to the energy-related renovation of old buildings, which has been subsidised by the State of Berlin since 1990. Fine dust pollution has also decreased: emissions from vehicle exhausts dropped by more than 90 percent between 1989 and 2015.

Nevertheless, some pollutants are still exceeding limits to this day, which means that continuous close monitoring remains necessary and important.

Have a look at our overview of how Berlin’s air quality has developed over the past 45 years – illustrated by maps and tables.