You can find websites to know the air quality from any device reliably or receive notifications if the air quality is too low and unhealthy for certain people and you need to stay home that day. One of the most detailed options is to go to the Ministry for Ecological Transition or go to the specific pages of each Autonomous Community to find out if there is exact information about your city or municipality.
There are all kinds of pollutants in the air that can be dangerous to health. For example, nitrogen oxides, tropospheric ozone, sulfur oxides, carbon monoxide and dioxide, hydrocarbons such as benzene, methane or tuluene or metals such as lead, arsenic, mercury … Air Quality indices allow us to have an indicator with simple information so that all users understand it.
In most of the websites to know the air quality that we have below we can see different colors that are usually related to better or worse warm air. In some, beyond the colors you will also find exact information on the contaminants.
Air Quality from the Ministry for Ecological Transition
From the website of the Ministry for Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge you can access a specific website where you can consult air quality with all kinds of information. It is not an easy page for all users if you do not know clearly what you are looking for, it will be difficult.
You can see the different pollutants and you can add layers depending on what you need exactly but, as we say, you will have to be very clear about what you are looking for and know how to interpret the map and the legend. You can also see the air quality according to the date or time you want exactly. As collected from the website itself, “the viewer allows consulting the air quality information at the national level of pollutants with legislated values for health protection in Royal Decree 102/2011: SO2, NO2, PM10, PM2.5, O3, Pb, C6H6, CO, As, Cd, Ni and B (a) P, including real-time data and the historical evolution of the evaluation of air quality ”.
It is somewhat messy but it can be the most complete website if you are looking for accurate and exhaustive information on air quality. If you want more than just colors and numbers that tell you if everything is right or wrong, it is the best option you can consult and permanently updated.
Much clearer than the previous one is this web page where you can not only see Spain’s air pollution but from any country or even from all over the world. It does not have its own information but collects information from other sources and makes it available to users. The information is much simpler or more intuitive and you will see a color diagram according to air quality (burgundy as dangerous, purple as very unhealthy, red as unhealthy, orange as unhealthy for sensitive groups, yellow as moderate or green as good air quality)
You will see the different points on the map and you can move the mouse over them to see the graph of the last twelve months and detailed information on O2, NO2 and SO2. Another advantage is that you can have air quality forecasts or access historical data by months from some of the monitoring stations: it has forecasts for the next few days and exhaustive information by zones.
One of the advantages of this website is that it not only collects information from Spain but you will also find real-time air quality information in Europe, Asia, North America, South America, Africa… You can put the map of the full world e zoom in on the areas that interest you most. Something useful if you are going to travel or if you are not only looking in Spain, also abroad. You will see if there is a risky area that you better avoid in case you have respiratory problems and you do not want them to be accentuated by traveling to an area where the contamination is high.
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Eltiempo.es is one of the best websites to consult the weather forecast but it also allows us to have an Air Quality Index in Spain by cities. You will see the main stations of Spain arranged in alphabetical order or on a country map. On the map of Spain you can click on the different provinces to access more information by areas.
Particulate pollutants (PM), Carbon monoxide (CO), Ozone (O2), Nitrogen dioxide (NO2), Sulfur dioxide (SO2) And as explained from the website, the calculated indexes for each pollutant are selected the one with the most unfavorable value and it is this value, in this case, which is considered the air quality index for that moment. In each of the cities you will see a number (from to 500 …) and an identifying color as good, moderate, unhealthy, etc.
The colors and numbers are:
- Good from 00 to 50 in green: air quality is not a risk
- Moderate from 51 to 100 in yellow: Air quality is acceptable but there may be moderate concern for some population groups.
- Orange from 101 to 150 unhealthy for sensitive groups such as lung diseases, the elderly or children, for example.
- Red from 151 to 200 unhealthy. Anyone can begin to experience negative health effects, especially sensitive groups.
- Very unhealthy 201 to 300 purple: A health emergency warning should be used to prevent health effects for the entire population.
- Bordeaux 301 to 500: Dangerous for health. It seriously affects.
Normally with a look at the map of Spain we will see that the air quality is almost always good or moderate in most parts of our country.
Municipalities and Autonomous Communities
Not all municipalities have information on air quality and many, such as the Andalusian Government, will directly redirect you to the viewer of the Ministry for Ecological Transition. But others do collect information such as Madrid or Barcelona, cities with habitual concern about pollution, for example. Some cities limit traffic at times of poor air quality and it is interesting to know the data or have a forecast. In the case of Madrid, we will see the regulations, recommendations for health, forecast for the next 24 or 48 hours or a very interesting explanation about what pollutants there are, which are the most relevant in terms of health effects, etc.
From the Community of Madrid you can access the Air Quality Network and choose the season or the pollutant. You will have recent online data or historical data by area or by stations or by networks. If you filter by station, you will see the details of the last 24 hours indicated hour by hour and with all the detailed contaminants. To which the website of the Ministry for Ecological Transition is about a very complete website full of information but it can be more complex for you.
From other entities and organizations you can also find information. For example, from the Barcelona City Council we also find a specific section where we can see all the information about air, the health effects, the tips for clean air. Also from here we can access the Department of Territory and Sustainability of the Generalitat de Catalunya.