Polluters exposed by new eye in the sky satellite - BBC News
What must it be like to live in the Siberian town of Norilsk on a “bad air day”?
They say the local smelting industry produces 1% of all the sulphur dioxide (SO₂) going into the air globally, something close to two million tonnes a year.
SO₂ is particularly unpleasant if breathed in; but it also washes out of the sky as “acid rain”, damaging plant-life and denuding the quality of water in streams and rivers.
The extent of Norilsk’s pollution problem is captured in remarkable new maps from Europe’s Sentinel-5P satellite.
The spacecraft was put up last year to track the gases responsible for dirty air - with SO₂ being one of the prime culprits.
Assembled in the UK and carrying the Dutch-led Tropomi instrument, S5P promises to be a game-changer in monitoring what’s happening in our atmosphere.
It has much higher resolution than its predecessors and acquires data on such a scale that its maps can be assembled very quickly.