Air pollution when you hit the slopes?

A new report reveals how much air pollution there is in some of the world’s most popular skiing resorts

Big Zero Report 2022

Air pollution has become an unfortunately common issue for many city-dwellers but how high are the levels at the top of the mountains?

Airly analysed air quality data from many ski resorts worldwide, comparing the level of PM10 – the most common type of air pollution measured.

So where should you go skiing next?

The report found that for most resorts throughout the year, the quality of air is at or below safe levels due to the high altitude.

Lower altitude resorts examined in Poland and Romania had high levels of PM10 due to their proximity to traffic and heating from coal to keep houses warm.

The cleanest resorts in the study were Oberjoch in Germany, Chamonix in France and Bolzano in Italy, due to their mountain side locations.

Resorts with more services and transport links such as ski lifts had the heaviest levels of pollution and many exhibited spikes in pollution on days of celebration such as New Year’s Eve.

The report links both population density and altitude to safer air – put simply, where more people congregate, the more pollution is exhibited.

Marcin Gnat, Airly, said: “If we could give some tips to the ski and clean air lovers, we would recommend them not to choose deep and densely urbanised valleys and instead think of more rural places on higher altitude.”

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