What do we breathe in the South Moravia Region?

Press release from the joint press conference of the Centre for Transport Research and the South Moravia Region

Brno, 23 November 2021

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What do we breathe in the South Moravia Region?

The results of the largest measurement phase to date, which will start in January next year, will largely try to answer this question.

Air quality is one of the most important factors that affect the quality of life of the region’s residents. In addition to industry, domestic heating and car transport produce a large share of the pollution. They both release Benzo[a]pyrene, which is a proven human carcinogen, into the atmosphere. Benzo[a]pyrene is part of the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon class of chemicals, which generally have serious effects on human health. Its concentration in the air at many air pollution monitoring stations in the Czech Republic exceed the limit set by Act No. 201/2012 Coll.

Kde je ovzduší znečistěné, ukáže expertní měření.

The Centre for Transport Research, a public research institution, has started work on the project „Detailed monitoring of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in connection with the Program for the Improvement of Air Quality in the Southeast Zone CZ06Z 2020+ (PAUPZKO)“, which is supported by Call-2A "Tromso" within the program "Environment, Ecosystems and Climate Change", supported by Norway Grants. Preparatory work began in May and the project will be completed in April 2024.

"Our environmental experts will carry out detailed monitoring and the evaluation of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon concentrations, including the aforementioned carcinogenic Benzo[a]pyrene, in selected locations in the South Moravia Region," said Roman Ličbinský, the Director of Sustainable Transport and Transport Construction Diagnostics for the Centre for Transport Research.

Evaluation of results and elaboration of action plans

The measurement data will undergo a very detailed professional assessment. "Based on the results, we will prepare action plans and proposals for specific measures to reduce Benzo[a]pyrene concentrations," said Jakub Bucek of Bucek, L.L.C., which has expertise in testing.

How will the measurements take place?

"We will take measurements during two heating seasons and one non-heating season," said Radek Vít on behalf of the team of experts from the CDV. "In addition to measuring the concentrations of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, other pollutants will be measured in selected municipalities, namely SO2, NO, NO2, NOx, CO, O3, PM10, PM2.5 and PM1,“ Determining the concentrations of these other pollutants will provide more information about the air quality of a given location and thus help to more accurately identify the sources of the air pollution.

Where will the testing take place?

Municipalities and cities were selected by representatives of the Regional Office of the South Moravia Region, in cooperation with the Centre for Transport Research and Bucek, L.L.C. Selections were primarily based on the Air Quality Improvement Plan prepared by the Ministry of the Environment. Also taken into account was the predominant form of heating for households in the villages, the number of inhabitants, and the nature of the landscape. Water-protection zones and multiple types of other protected areas were also considered.

"Although air quality has been significantly improved in recent years, this issue is still one of the most pressing environmental issues given the current energy crisis and the renaissance of solid fuel heating. The PAUPZKO project will provide unique comprehensive data about air quality and locations where air quality has not yet been directly monitored," said Lukáš Dubec, the Statutory Deputy Governor of the South Moravia Region.

The aim is for the data obtained from real measurements to cover the largest possible area of the southeastern zone. A similar program for monitoring air quality will also take place in the Vysočina Region.

Involvement of cities and municipalities

Tišnov is one place where the air quality will be measured. "We are interested in what our citizens breathe and how we can improve the situation. Today, the environment is of interest to virtually everyone. Therefore, I did not hesitate to consent to the involvement of our city in this program," said Tišnov mayor Jiří Dospíšil. Other cities and towns of the South Moravia Region are also joining the project. Residents can learn more on the website www.monitoringpau.cz. From January, a map of the specific locations will be published there, and it will be gradually supplemented with measurement results.


The Transport Research Centre

Mgr. Roman Ličbinský, Ph.D.

Contact for media:
Šárka Želinská, tel. 778 737 336, e-mail: sarka.zelinska@cdv.cz


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The research of the Centre for Transport Research, a public research institution, covers the key needs of transport development in the Czech Republic at the national, regional, and local levels.

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