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Monitoring of air quality in the borough takes place 24 hours a day at two automatic continuous monitoring stations. There is one monitor on Holloway Road, near the Nags Head, and one near the Ecology Centre.

These continuous monitoring stations measure two of the main pollutants; nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter (PM10).

For detailed information and reporting of data from these sites please visit the London Air Quality Network website.

In addition, the council has 20 permanent diffusion tubes located across the borough to give a broad overview of nitrogen dioxide levels every month. Diffusion tubes are not as accurate as the continuous monitoring stations, but provide information on air pollution trends over time across the borough.

The results of these tubes and the automatic monitors are published each year in our Annual Status Report and support the ongoing review and assessment of air quality in the borough.

Since July 2018 we have been measuring air pollution using diffusion tubes at all of the schools in the borough. On top of this the council carries out adhoc monitoring to make sure various projects have the desired effect such as the changes to Old Street roundabout and School Streets. This means we have almost 200 diffusion tubes across the borough.

At our request other organisations may carry out pollution monitoring such as dust monitoring at construction sites.

Monitoring air quality at every school  

In 2021, we published data showing nitrogen dioxide (NO2) air pollution levels at all primary and secondary schools in the borough for 2018 to 2021 in the Air Quality Annual Status Report 2021. Overall, our monitoring has shown improvements in air quality outside schools over this time period.

As pollution can vary from year to year, for example due to changes in weather conditions, or with the impacts of the COVI-19 pandemic lockdowns, it is important to see a single year’s data in the context of longer-term trends.

Monitoring data at schools ranged from 25-42µg/m3 in 2018, 17-45µg/m3 in 2019 and 15-34µg/m3 in 2020 and 17-30 µg/m3 in 2021.

Read the full data set for air quality surrounding schools and across the borough more widely on our reports page.

Maps showing average nitrogen dioxide levels at Islington schools in 2019 and 2020

Image showing air quality data at Islington schools in 2019 and 2021

Download the air quality at Islington schools maps image

Islington will continue to monitor pollution outside schools and use this information to better inform council decisions where further work is required. 

We are taking multiple measures to improve air quality in Islington 

These measures include:

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