National Air Pollution Monitoring Network (NABEL)

The National Air Pollution Monitoring Network (NABEL) measures air pollution at 16 locations in Switzerland. The stations are distributed throughout the country and monitor pollution at typical locations (e.g. city-centre streets, residential areas, rural stations).

In summer 2016, the new NABEL station Beromünster (LU) was put into operation at the shut-down radio transmission tower. The new station replaces the forest station Lägeren (AG) and allows the measurement of a wider range of pollutants.

The monitoring network has commenced operations in stages since 1979 and is operated by the Federal office for the environment and Empa. Article 39 of the LRV requires the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) to collect data on air pollution throughout Switzerland. The fulfilment of this statutory mandate is among the principal purposes of the NABEL network. NABEL measures indicator pollutants of national significance (e.g. nitrogen dioxide, ozone, fine particles (PM10), etc.). It is thus an important instrument for enforcing the LRV, especially insofar as it serves to monitor the success of air-pollution control measures (Art. 44 of the Environmental Protection Law).

NABEL also performs measurements for international monitoring programs and participates in the European exchange of data. Since monitoring activities commenced, various rural stations have formed part of the European Monitoring and Evaluation Programme (EMEP), which principally investigates the long-range transport of air pollutants across Europe. In addition, NABEL places its data at the disposal of EUROAIRNET, which was established by the European Environment Agency and primarily comprises stations from urban and suburban areas of all European countries. The Jungfraujoch station is part of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO)'s Global Atmosphere Watch (GAW) programme and serves as a background station for the free troposphere across the Central European region.

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Last modification 03.07.2019

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