If the mayor of Madrid says stupidities, it is not the fault of the Azores anticyclone

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We are witnessing these days an event that is becoming a classic in Spain every Winter: the extraordinary concentration of pollutants in the atmosphere of the largest urban areas. The pollutant that is triggering the alarms and exceeding the legal and healthy levels is nitrogen dioxide (NO2), mainly caused by traffic and the industrial activity.

Fuente: ecologistasenaccion.org
Source: ecologistasenaccion.org

As a consequence of this concentration, the biggest cities present again a depressing picture. Last year, Barcelona was the most affected city [1] and this year is the turn of Madrid (right).

But the pollution episodes are not limited just to serious concentration of toxic agents. Apart from the pollutants layer in the atmosphere, another kind of contamination appears, an informative pollution, proceeding from he governors and their sympathetic media.

Last year, the Government of Catalonia and the newspaper La Vanguardia used a false environmental awareness to try to manipulate people [2]. Now, the City Council of Madrid and its mayor, Ana Botella, are offering an image almost as depressing as the city´s skyline by means of ridiculous reasons which include an unjustified complacency, deliberate manipulation of data, an attempt to convence people on the environmental management or deflect the responsibility to the European Union for its harsh standards on air quality and the cars manufacturers for selling such pollutant vehicles [3].

All these arguments may be summarized looking at the picture of the Madrid´s skyline of these days: a smokescreen.

efeverde_anticiclon_dic_2014 2

To blame the weather is the only reason that lefts the mayor of Madrid to say, as the Catalan governors did one year ago. Now, some media like EFEVerde suggested such idea, stating that the Azores anticyclone is the cause of the high pollution levels [4], which is not correct and diverts from the real causes of the pollution.

If we start to relate events, we could also say that the ridiculous words of the mayor of Madrid regarding the city´s pollution are also due to the weather.

No, the Azores anticyclone doens´t produces higher levels of pollution. At most, it may be a factor of pollutants concentration. The atmospheric contamination in Madrid is a consequence of the sustainability criteria established in the model of city (urban planning, public transport) and, in the short term, in the management of the pollution peak suffered these days.

What the Azores anticyclone does every Winter, is to unveil the environmental policies established by the administrations, as well as the solvency of the governors.

The anticyclone will go by, the pollutants layer of Madrid will be scattered and will no longer appear in the news, the mayor of Madrid won´t talk about environment. However, the sources will continue releasing toxic agents, the media will focus on another issues and Ana Botella will continue saying stupidities, because nothing of this is a fault of the Azores anticyclone.

[1] ARAGON VALLEY. 10 dec 2013. El problema de la contaminación atmosférica en Barcelona: Cómo no hacer nada y parecer que lo estás bordando. http://www.aragonvalley.com/problema-contaminacion-atmosferica-barcelona/. Consulted 12 jan 2015.
[2] ARAGON VALLEY. 14 dec 2013. Conciencia medioambiental para manipular a la gente. http://www.aragonvalley.com/conciencia-medioambiental-para-manipular-a-la-gente/. Consulted 12 jan 2015.
[3] 20 MINUTOS. 7 jan 2015. Ana Botella defiende que los niveles de contaminación son mejores que hace cuatro añoshttp://www.20minutos.es/noticia/2341515/0/ana-botella/niveles-de-contaminacion/ahora-son-mejores/#xtor=AD-15&xts=467263. Consulted 12 jan 2015.
[4] EFEVERDE. 9 jan 2015. Dolores de cabeza y contaminación, fruto de un “superanticiclón” de récord. http://www.efeverde.com/noticias/dolor-contaminacion-anticiclon-record/. Consulted 12 jan 2015.