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air pollutant


Environmental Specimen Bank

photo of a women working in the Environmental specimen bank

The Environmental Specimen Bank (ESB) serves to investigate, document and archive environmental and human exposure to pollutants in Germany at a specific point in time. read more


Indoor air hygiene

livingroom with armchairs, dining table, carpet, lamps, pictures and potted plants

People in developed countries spend the majority of their lives indoors, on average about two thirds in their home. However, the quality of indoor air is not always beneficial to human health. read more


Cross-media monitoring in air quality management

Neuglobsow air monitoring station

The International Cooperative Programme on Integrated Monitoring of Air Pollution Effects on EcosystemsThe Integrated Monitoring programme monitors the effects of transboundary air pollutants on ecosystems at various sites throughout Europe. Comprehensive measurements are used to draw up water and material cycle balances on catchment scale. These detailed observations of cause-effect relationships... read more


Sulphur dioxide

Sulphur dioxide is a colourless, water soluble gas with a pungent smell. It is produced from combustion of fossil fuels, for example coal and oil. read more



Ozone is a colourless and toxic gas, and one of the most important trace gases in the atmosphere. The natural ozone layer which occurs in the atmosphere at an altitude of between 20 and 30 km protects life on earth against harmful ultraviolet radiation. read more


Carbon monoxide

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colourless, odourless and tasteless gas, which is a result of incomplete fuel combustion. The main source of carbon monoxide in ambient air is the transport sector. read more


Nitrogen dioxide

The main sources of the air pollutant nitrogen dioxide are combustion processes in the industrial and energy production sectors, and road transport. Nitrogen dioxide affects the respiratory mucous membrane and influences the respiratory function. read more


Reactive nitrogen

Reactive nitrogen, unlike nonreactive molecular nitrogen (N2), is in a great many organic and inorganic substance compounds and of vital importance to all life processes. The availability of reactive nitrogen often limits plant growth, which is why sufficient supply of reactive nitrogen is so important in food production. If excessive amounts of reactive nitrogen are deposited to the environment,... read more


The Umweltbundesamt

For our environment