How High Wind Speed Can Reduce Negative Effects of Confirmed Cases and Total Deaths of COVID-19 Infection in Society
Working Paper CocciaLab n. 52/2020, CNR - National Research Council of Italy
20 Pages Posted: 22 May 2020
Date Written: May 9, 2020
The pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is rapidly spreading all over the world, generating a high number of total deaths. One of the current questions is: how atmospheric factor of wind, in the presence of high levels of air pollution, affects the diffusion of COVID-19? This study endeavours to explain the relation between air pollution and particulate compounds emissions in the atmosphere, wind speed and the diffusion of COVID-19 infection to provide interesting insights of the causes of accellerated diffusion of viral agents. The statistical analysis here focuses on case study of Italy, one of the countries to experience a rapid increase in confirmed cases and deaths of COVID-19 infection. Results reveal two main findings:
1) cities of regions with high wind speed in the atmosphere have a lower number of infected individuals and total deaths of COVID-19 infection;
2) cities located in hinterland zones (mostly those bordering large urban conurbations) with low wind speed and high air pollution and particulate compounds emissions in the atmosphere have a greater number of infected individuals and total deaths.
Explained finding is that cities located in hinterland zones of the northern Italian region with low wind speed have an urban climatology and aspects of urban and regional topography that sustain the stagnation of air pollution and particulate compounds that can support the spread of viral infectivity in fall and winter season. Overall, then, cities with pollution industrialization have also to consider low wind speed that can increase stagnation of the air in the atmosphere with potential problems for public health in the presence of viral agents. Results here suggest that current pandemic of Coronavirus disease and future epidemics similar to COVID-19 infection cannot be solved only with research and practice of medicine and immunology but also with the development of environmental policy to reduce emission of particulate compounds, improving air quality and ecosystem.
Note: Funding: No funding was received for this study.
Conflict of Interest: The author declares that he has no known competing financial interests or personal relationships that could have appeared to influence the work reported in this paper.
Keywords: Air Pollution, Particulate Matter, Particulate Compounds, Air Quality, Atmospheric Circulation, Wind Speed, COVID-19, Coronavirus Disease, Coronavirus Infection; SARS-CoV-2, Human health, Ecosystem, Environmental policy
JEL Classification: F64, I10, I18, I19, H51, H75, K32, H84, Q50, Q51, Q52, Q53, Q55, Q58, O32, O33
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation