Pollution in the city centre has increased in the last year according to the latest monitoring.

Levels of nitrogen dioxide have risen at almost all monitoring stations in the city centre.

The annual report on air quality shows an average increase of 20% across 27 sites.

There have been concerns that pollution levels that dropped in 2020 and 2021 have been on the rise since lockdown restrictions eased.

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The report states: “As pandemic restrictions eased further in 2022, a significant rise in NO2 levels was recorded at almost all city centre locations monitored by diffusion tube, with annual mean NO2 rising by between 4 and 44% across the 27 monitoring locations.

“The average rise in recorded NO2 levels by city centre diffusion tubes between 2021 and 2022 was 20%.”

It found some sites showed a small reduction in NO2 levels but overall there was an increase and two locations - Gordon Street and Hopes Street - were above target levels.

The first phase of the Low Emission Zone, for buses, has been attributed as an action that helped create a downward trend in pollution from 2018 to 2020 but increasing levels at certain sites has led to justification by some for enforcement commencing for phase two for cars earlier this year.

The report states that: “The main source of air pollution comes from road traffic.

“Airborne particulate matter is more heavily influenced by non-local effects; however, nitrogen dioxide is more directly attributable to local traffic volumes and engine type, particularly diesel engines.”

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It added: “Both short and long-term exposure to air pollution can lead to a wide range of diseases, including asthma and respiratory infections, with evidence also now emerging of links to other conditions including type 2 diabetes and dementia.”

Angus Millar, City Convener for Transport and Climate said the report highlights: “the concerning levels of harmful air pollution throughout Glasgow city centre in 2022, the latest calendar year for which data is available.

He said: “Poor air quality contributes to hundreds of deaths in Glasgow a year, as well as exacerbating long term health inequalities and the health conditions of thousands of Glaswegians.

"While Glasgow has made significant progress on improving air quality in recent years, the latest figures clearly demonstrate a sharp and unwelcome bounce back from the pandemic with nitrogen dioxide levels up by an average of a fifth.

“This rise in air pollution in 2022 is unacceptable and, as the Annual Report concludes, it is clear that continued interventions are required to improve air quality and meet statutory standards.”