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NASA: Florida's air pollution decreased 30% in comparison to last 5 years

Posted at 12:49 PM, Apr 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-30 12:49:58-04

FLORIDA (WTXL) — In just the course of a month, Florida has seen significant reductions in air pollution according to data from NASA.

According to their data, nitrogen dioxide levels are about 30-35% lower over Orlando and Miami, while about 40% lower over Jacksonville.

NASA says nitrogen dioxide, which is primarily emitted from burning fossil fuels for transportation and electricity generation, can be used as an indicator of changes in human activity.

Their satellite images show the levels of nitrogen dioxide are about 30% lower over Florida when compared to the average levels between 2015 and 2019.

"In fact, March 15 – April 15 2020 shows the lowest value for the region as compared to any other year during the OMI data record, which spans 2005 to present," NASA wrote in a statement.

The significant drop started when Gov. Ron DeSantis locked down the state and theme parks began shutting their doors.

Similar trends have also been seen around the world, according to NASA.

They note that during much of this time period, central and south Florida experienced record setting heat and unusually low rainfall so more analysis is required to determine the amount of the change in nitrogen dioxide levels caused by a lack of pollutant emissions v.s. natural changes in weather.