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Today's Pollution Index reading is 1 but what does that mean?


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Tell me more > How is the Index for GM calculated? 

The home page displays the current index (from 1 to 10) for Greater Manchester, but how is this calculated?

The index is based on nitrogen dioxide as this is the pollutant of greatest concern because it exceeds the government health based standards near busy roads and town centres. The areas exceeded are called the Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) and can be viewed on the AQMA map.

How is the index for each site calculated?
The highest index of the pollutants at each site is used to calculate the index for the site. This is then used to colour code the markers on the current air quality map.

The index is a simple way of showing changes in daily air quality. It is helpful to those affected by higher levels of pollution allowing them to adjust their day or medication. A numer based system is divided into four bands low, moderate, high and very high. Those people with ill health may suffer more effects as the level increases. Levels in Greater Manchester rarely go into the high or very high band.

The health effects of pollution in each band can be seen here.










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