Decrease of Air Pollution During the Time of Confinement

June 22, 2020

Madrid Towers seen without pollution - Domingo Pestana

Photographer: Domingo Pestana
Summary Author: Domingo Pestana 

This composite image shows the great decrease in air pollution in the city of Madrid, Spain, due to COVID-19 confinement. The upper image was taken during sunset on April 2, 2020, almost 3 weeks after the start of the confinement. As viewed from where I live in Alcalá de Henares, some 17 mi (25 km) from Madrid, the Madrid towers are quite clear.

The bottom image was taken a year ago from the same site, the balcony of my home, during sunrise on March 21, 2019. You can easily see the thick layer of pollution over Madrid. Note that this image is composed of three separate photos to show how the Moon disappears within the layers of pollution and haze, long before reaching the horizon.