Traffic-related Air Pollution - Benzol, Nitrogen Oxide and Diesel Particulates 1993


The streets of Berlin are abuzz: more than 1,452,000 motor vehicles are registered in the capital – and the numbers are rising (AfS 2020 (only in German)). Road freight traffic, too, will continue to grow in the future. Reasons include the further expansion of the Berlin-Brandenburg region as a shared space to live and do business, strong international economic ties and excellent connections to Eastern Europe.

However, mobility always comes at a price: motor vehicle traffic is now the biggest cause of air pollution in Berlin. Pollutants are discharged from the exhaust of motor vehicles and are emitted at petrol stations, for example. The inner city is particularly hard hit. Three main air pollutants are benzol (benzene), diesel particulates and nitrogen dioxide. The industrial solvent benzol is considered a major health hazard. It causes damage to the bone marrow, leukaemia and lymphoma. Diesel particulates are carcinogenic and a possible cause of lung and bladder carcinoma. Nitrogen dioxide irritates our mucous membranes in the respiratory system and increases our risk of infection.

As these three pollutants pose a great threat both to our health and the environment, Berlin is keeping tabs on how much of these is floating around. Discover our data, maps and work results on the emissions (output) and immissions (impact on the environment) of benzol, diesel particulates and nitrogen dioxide in Berlin from the year 1993.