Roaming pollutants

Published: Thursday 30 November 2000

Europe may be contributing significantly to pollution in Asia during winters. Reginald Newell and Mathew Evans of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology investigated how much pollution reaches Asia from sources across the Pacific Ocean. A detailed analysis revealed that every year in January and February, 30-40 per cent of the air that arrives in Asia at longitude 100E passes over Europe. Moreover, pollutants emitted in Europe swirl up through the atmosphere during winter storms. This convinced the researchers that pollution from Europe reaches Asia ( Nature , Vol 407, No 6801).

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