Air quality in Reykjavík ranked 16th in new study

According to a study based on city air quality recently published by the European Environment Agency (EEA), Iceland’s capital, Reykjavík, has been ranked the 16th city in Europe with the cleanest air quality.

Landvernd, an environmental conservation organization based in Iceland, stated, “This isn’t overly surprising,” with its Managing Director Auður Önnu Magnúsdóttir commenting, “I even expected us to rank lower.”

Landvernd explained that studded tires are the main reason for fine particulate matter air pollution, with the organization requesting that a fee should be charged for the use of studded tires in the capital area.

Other factors that affect air quality include auto emissions, with heavier vehicles creating finer matter.

The study found that Umeå in Sweden is the city with the best air quality, followed by other cities in Scandinavia, including Norway and Finland. Magnúsdóttir stated that the cities higher up on the list have better measures in place for the usage of studded tires.

“When Landvernd suggests is adopting a policy based on a model from Norway, such as in Oslo, where people can pay a daily fee for the use of studded tires. This way, those who travel from far away and must, for example, cross mountain passes, are allowed to use studded tires in the city, as long as they pay a fee for it,” explained Magnúsdóttir.