NO2 emissions in Portugal during COVID-19 outbreak

  • April 1, 2020 | by AIRcentre

Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) is generated by vehicles, heavy industry and power plants, which have been shut down during the coronavirus pandemic. The main effects of breathing NO2 relates to the increase of probability of respiratory problems as it inflames the lining of the lungs and reduce immunity to lung infections, causing problems like coughing, colds and bronchitis. The following images depict the timeline of NO2 emissions during the COVID-19 outbreak in Portugal and Spain, images from European satellite Copernicus Sentinel 5P using TROPOMI (Tropospheric Monitoring Instrument) .


  • Closing of museums, theaters, monuments, and sport activities in closed areas
  • Flights to Italy closed for 14 days


  • More than 1000 doctors volunteer to reinforce the national health service
  • OMS declared covid-19 as pandemic
  • Anounced that all schools will be closed in the following days


  • Spain includes drastic measures, forbidding citizens going to the street except for working, food and pharmacy

16/3 to 18/3

  • 1st death in Portugal
  • Boarder control with Spain enacted
  • Declared sate of Emergency


  • Daily air traffic at Portuguese airports dropped 87%
  • Banco de Portugal (BdP), warns about severe economic impact on growth and unemployment
  • Schools will not be returning for the ‘third period’ (summer term)


  • ‘stay at home’ policy is apparently causing flattening of the curve (of new cases needing hospital treatment)

Disclaimer: the AIR Centre is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information this report contains.

Download the report #1 here.