Humanity and the Weather

Air Pollution

Does air pollution reach as far as the North Pole?

Yes. Winds can carry air pollutants far beyond the Arctic Circle, resulting in a condition called “Arctic haze.” The pollution tends to be worse during winter and spring, when prevailing winds from northern Europe to Siberia blow emissions northward from industrial areas. Recent shifts from coal burning to natural gas (primarily from Russia) has created cleaner air conditions, fortunately.


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