Air quality for the last few weeks has been generally good, and my attention has been elsewhere, so I have had nothing particularly to post. However, this morning saw a startling, steady increase of both PM2.5 and PM10. Thankfully both graphs have begun to drop again now, but the daily average values remain elevated. PM2.5 15 Feb 2019 Sovereign Harbour Eastbourne PM10 15 Feb 2019 Sovereign Harbour Eastbourne

PM2.5 has peaked at over 72ug/m³ (DAQI Very high), while PM10 has peaked at over 120ug/m³ (DAQI Very high).
Looking at the week chart, it seems that the increase may have started on Feb 13. PM2.5 for the week to 15 Feb 2019 Sovereign Harbour Eastbourne

Weather-wise we have been experiencing high pressure above 1035 hPa since Tuesday 12th, and what low wind there has been (generally below 5 mph) has been out of the east. Weather data for the week to 15 Feb 2019 Sovereign Harbour Eastbourne

A possible source of the increased particulate matter could be shipping traffic pollution from the narrower point of the English Channel being pushed slowly in our direction. Otherwise all the usual suspects, including increased use of domestic and business heating systems in response to low temperatures (-0.1°C) last night/this morning will have had their effect too.

One point to note, if it was local pollution (e.g. pollution arising from heating systems) driving the increase I would expect an easterly breeze to bring in relatively clean air to us in Sovereign Harbour (on the east side of town), which would tend to reduce pollution levels. This leads me to think that the pollution we have seen today comes from out of town.

Update at 1900hrs:

  • PM levels are heading back up again this evening. PM2.5 stands at 58ug/m³ (DAQI High), while PM10 is back up to 65ug/m³ (DAQI Moderate).
  • Also added the header photo taken at sunset this evening, note the orange coloured haze.