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Home > The ABC of air > Pollutants
Pollutants

Different sources

The term ‘atmospheric pollution’ covers a wide range of pollutants. Their sources are many — and they are growing all the time.

Indicators

It is therefore necessary to select only those substances that tend to be relevant indicators of air pollution.

The usual pollutants monitored are :

  • sulphur dioxide (SO2)
  • nitrogen oxide (NO) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2)
  • ozone (O3)
  • particles (PM10 et 2,5)

With the French law of 1996 on the air, with the progress of knowledge, improvement of measuring techniques, but also greater consideration of health effects, the range of pollutants now being measured has broadened (Toxic metals, volatile organic compounds...).