Is the COVID-19 Lockdown the Best Thing to Happen to Mother Earth in a While?

Two weeks after the nationwide lockdown was announced many countries around the world started noticing a few changes to our climate. NO₂ pollution in some cities fell by as much as 60% (compared to the same time span back in 2019). We must point out that most NO₂ comes directly from road transport and power plants and it can, unfortunately, cause exacerbate respiratory illnesses like asthma, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO) around 3 million people die each year from illnesses caused by air pollution, not to mention how those emissions can also put those who suffer from lung or heart conditions in a very critical condition.

So when the pandemic took place many drastic measures were taken by governments, varying between the shutdown of factories, commercial establishments, suspending flights and vehicular movement, all have resulted in a noticeable drop in the pollution levels across the world.

The reduction in air pollution is confirmed in this image from the European Space Agency
Via france24

Many researchers actually believe that COVID-19 lockdown might be just what we need, ‘a makeover’ for mother nature. Since people are ‘working from home’ and practicing ‘social distancing’, schools, and offices have remained shut down for weeks, which luckily abled many species to return to their own original habitats. Birds and animals are now able to roam around freely on own their accord. Marine life is seeing increased activity, the sky is blue again with clean air and crystal clear waters, our environment is rejuvenating itself.

But, the question remains, is all of this only a temporary fantasy? will the virus succeed in challenging our governments and businesses to consider how things can be done differently post-pandemic?

If there were to be one positive thing to take from this terrible crisis we’re living in, it could be that it has given us a second chance to experience a taste of the air we might breathe in a low-carbon future. The pandemic showed us how the future might look with less air pollution.

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