KAZALCI OKOLJA

You are here

Key message
Good

Concentrations of sulphur dioxide in ambient air no longer represent a hazard for human health in settled areas. Also, the critical annual value for the protection of vegetation is no longer exceeded. The improvement of the situation in the last decade is a result of implemented measures in industry and thermal power plants and the introduction of low-sulphur fuels.


This indicator shows the frequency of exceeding of the hourly limit value for sulphur dioxide (SO2) concentration (350 μg/m3), the frequency of exceeding of the 24-hour limit value for SO2 concentration (125 μg/m3), the mean annual SO2 concentration and exceeding of annual critical SO2 concentration for vegetation protection (20 μg/m3) in Slovenia from 1992 onwards.

The health protection limit value is the limit concentration set on the basis of scientific knowledge. The objective of compliance with the limit value is to avoid, prevent or reduce harmful effects of SO2 on human health and ecosystems. The limit value must be met within the set time limit determined by the legislation. Once the goal is achieved, the limit value may not be exceeded again.

The plant protection critical value is the concentration set on the basis of scientific knowledge. Its being exceeded may result in direct harmful effects on certain receptors, such as trees, other plants or natural ecosystems, but not on humans.

The main sources of SO2 are large thermal power plants and heat production plants and, in some urban areas, small and medium-sized coal-burning boiler facilities. SO2 is also generated in certain industrial processes (e.g. cellulose production) and in combustion of fuels containing sulphur. Due to its acidic properties, it causes the formation of acids that are deposited on waters and the ground (acid deposition). Acidification may adversely affect the water ecosystems of rivers and lakes as well as forests, crops and other vegetation. Due to the acidity of sulphur dioxide, damage to buildings and cultural monuments may also occur. Emissions of SO2 contribute to the formation of particulate matter in the atmosphere.

.


Charts

Figure ZR05-1: No. of hours with exceeded 1-hour limit value of SO2 (350 μg/m3) in Slovenian cities (not to be exceeded more than 24 times calendar year)
Sources: 

Air quality monitoring database (DMKZ), Slovenian Environment Agency; Air quality monitoring database of Thermal power plant Šoštanj, Trbovlje and TE-TO Ljubljana, Insitute Milan Vidmar, 2016.

Note to table ZR5-1: * measurements are canceled, np=no data

Show data
1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002
Urban background number of hours 66 19 10 14 26 12 17 5 4 9
Ljubljana Bežigrad number of hours 51 13 16 32 39 14 14 0 0 0
Hrastnik number of hours 82 24 14 23 58 24 40 11 14 43
Velenje number of hours 27 16 0 2 3 6 13 6 0 1
Celje number of hours 104 22 11 0 4 4 0 1 1 0
Nova Gorica number of hours np np np np np np np np np 0
Suburban background number of hours 178 72 28 22 45 40 31 28 8 11
Trbovlje number of hours 162 61 46 17 52 14 18 12 20 10
Škale number of hours np np np np np 45 43 24 3 9
Rural background number of hours 10 13 25 22 68 19 23 16 13 np
Kum number of hours 10 13 25 22 68 19 23 16 13 np
Urban-traffic type number of hours 72 36 11 16 24 19 25 8 13 8
- Maribor center number of hours 7 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Suburban - industrial type number of hours 318 218 131 175 127 289 249 324 334 228
Šoštanj number of hours 318 218 131 175 127 289 249 324 334 228
Rural/Industrial type number of hours 209 205 129 118 242 211 203 141 108 110
- Zavodnje number of hours 196 233 54 90 158 152 152 96 18 45
- Kovk number of hours 315 448 260 151 486 262 323 218 159 26
- Vnajnarje number of hours 13 5 7 11 11 10 9 0 1 0
Veliki Vrh number of hours 315 246 179 200 200 273 400 279 250 269
Graška Gora number of hours 248 293 80 64 107 102 131 120 17 34
Ravenska vas number of hours 50 61 149 122 390 399 178 131 125 249
Dobovec number of hours 323 152 177 187 340 277 227 146 189 149
Rural/Agricultural type number of hours np np np np np np np np np 0
Murska Sobota - Rakičan number of hours np np np np np np np np np 0
permitted exceedance number of hours 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24
2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012
Urban background number of hours 2 10 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Ljubljana Bežigrad number of hours 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Hrastnik number of hours 8 49 12 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Velenje number of hours 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Celje number of hours 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Nova Gorica number of hours 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 * * *
Suburban background number of hours 11 0 6 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Trbovlje number of hours 28 np 17 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Škale number of hours 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Rural background number of hours np 6 12 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Kum number of hours np 6 12 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Urban-traffic type number of hours 17 36 9 0 0 1 0 0 0 0
- Maribor center number of hours 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 * 0 0
Suburban - industrial type number of hours 108 47 22 12 11 1 0 1 0 2
Šoštanj number of hours 108 47 22 12 11 1 0 1 0 2
Rural/Industrial type number of hours 128 97 71 5 2 1 2 0 1 1
- Zavodnje number of hours 23 1 9 1 0 0 2 0 1 0
- Kovk number of hours 288 278 94 3 1 0 1 0 0 3
- Vnajnarje number of hours 0 0 0 0 0 0 np 0 0 0
Veliki Vrh number of hours 246 90 56 28 9 6 0 0 3 4
Graška Gora number of hours 7 2 2 0 2 0 0 0 0 0
Ravenska vas number of hours 193 139 205 1 0 1 1 1 3 0
Dobovec number of hours 139 168 129 3 3 0 7 0 2 0
Rural/Agricultural type number of hours 0 0 0 0 0 0 * * * *
Murska Sobota - Rakičan number of hours 0 0 0 0 0 0 * * * *
permitted exceedance number of hours 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24
2013 2014 2015
Urban background number of hours 0 0 0
Ljubljana Bežigrad number of hours 0 0 0
Hrastnik number of hours 0 0 0
Velenje number of hours 0 0 0
Celje number of hours 0 0 0
Nova Gorica number of hours * * *
Suburban background number of hours 0 0 0
Trbovlje number of hours 0 0 0
Škale number of hours 0 0 0
Rural background number of hours 0 0 0
Kum number of hours 0 0 0
Urban-traffic type number of hours 0 0 0
- Maribor center number of hours * * *
Suburban - industrial type number of hours 0 0 1
Šoštanj number of hours 0 0 1
Rural/Industrial type number of hours 1 0 0
- Zavodnje number of hours 1 0 0
- Kovk number of hours 2 0 0
- Vnajnarje number of hours 0 0 0
Veliki Vrh number of hours 1 0 0
Graška Gora number of hours 0 0 0
Ravenska vas number of hours 0 0 0
Dobovec number of hours 0 0 0
Rural/Agricultural type number of hours * * *
Murska Sobota - Rakičan number of hours * * *
permitted exceedance number of hours 24 24 24
Figure ZR05-2: No. of days with exceeded 24-houly limit value of SO2 (125 μg/m3) (not to be exceede more than 3 times a calendar year)
Sources: 

Air quality monitoring database (DMKZ), Slovenian Environment Agency; Air quality monitoring database of Thermal power plant Šoštanj, Trbovlje and TE-TO Ljubljana, Insitute Milan Vidmar, 2016.

Note to table ZR5-2: * measurements are canceled, np=no data

Show data
1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001
Urban background number of days 36 23 6 4 1 3 0 1 1 0
Ljubljana Bežigrad number of days 38 28 2 3 1 1 1 0 0 0
Hrastnik number of days 50 28 4 4 3 4 0 2 1 1
Velenje number of days 4 1 1 0 0 2 0 1 0 0
Celje number of days 50 36 18 8 0 4 0 0 2 0
Nova Gorica number of days np np np np np np np np np np
Suburban background number of days 44 42 19 11 4 5 5 5 2 1
Trbovlje number of days 59 53 25 21 7 8 4 3 1 2
Škale number of days np np np np np np 6 7 1 0
Rural background number of days 1 0 0 2 1 6 0 1 1 2
Kum number of days 1 0 0 2 1 6 0 1 1 2
Urban-traffic type number of days 42 28 15 7 3 0 3 2 2 2
- Maribor center number of days 22 7 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Suburban - industrial type number of days 41 37 25 14 22 17 34 30 44 52
Šoštanj number of days 41 37 25 14 22 17 34 30 44 52
Rural/Industrial type number of days 31 29 32 22 19 37 39 32 26 18
- Zavodnje number of days 37 29 34 11 13 26 28 27 18 2
- Kovk number of days 36 55 71 47 19 65 48 53 49 38
- Vnajnarje number of days np 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0
Veliki Vrh number of days 63 45 37 26 32 28 47 67 41 32
Graška Gora number of days 27 32 46 14 13 13 18 17 23 1
Ravenska vas number of days 14 11 16 33 29 80 90 35 30 29
Dobovec number of days 10 33 19 20 24 47 42 25 22 21
Rural/Agricultural type number of days np np np np np np np np np np
Murska Sobota - Rakičan number of days np np np np np np np np np np
permitted exceedance number of days 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3
2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011
Urban background number of days 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Ljubljana Bežigrad number of days 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Hrastnik number of days 5 0 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Velenje number of days 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Celje number of days 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Nova Gorica number of days 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 * *
Suburban background number of days 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Trbovlje number of days 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Škale number of days 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Rural background number of days np np 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Kum number of days np np 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Urban-traffic type number of days 1 1 4 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
- Maribor center number of days 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 * 0
Suburban - industrial type number of days 29 9 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0
Šoštanj number of days 29 9 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0
Rural/Industrial type number of days 19 18 14 11 0 0 0 0 0 0
- Zavodnje number of days 9 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
- Kovk number of days 6 39 50 21 0 0 0 0 0 0
- Vnajnarje number of days 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 np 0 0
Veliki Vrh number of days 44 21 5 4 0 0 0 0 0 0
Graška Gora number of days 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Ravenska vas number of days 55 47 23 35 0 0 0 0 0 0
Dobovec number of days 16 15 18 13 1 1 0 0 0 0
Rural/Agricultural type number of days 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 * * *
Murska Sobota - Rakičan number of days 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 * * *
permitted exceedance number of days 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3
2012 2013 2014 2015
Urban background number of days 0 0 0 0
Ljubljana Bežigrad number of days 0 0 0 0
Hrastnik number of days 0 0 0 0
Velenje number of days 0 0 0 0
Celje number of days 0 0 0 0
Nova Gorica number of days * * * *
Suburban background number of days 0 0 0 0
Trbovlje number of days 0 0 0 0
Škale number of days 0 0 0 0
Rural background number of days 0 0 0 0
Kum number of days 0 0 0 0
Urban-traffic type number of days 0 0 0 0
- Maribor center number of days 0 * * *
Suburban - industrial type number of days 0 0 0 0
Šoštanj number of days 0 0 0 0
Rural/Industrial type number of days 0 0 0 0
- Zavodnje number of days 0 0 0 0
- Kovk number of days 0 0 0 0
- Vnajnarje number of days 0 0 0 0
Veliki Vrh number of days 0 0 0 0
Graška Gora number of days 0 0 0 0
Ravenska vas number of days 0 0 0 0
Dobovec number of days 0 0 0 0
Rural/Agricultural type number of days * * * *
Murska Sobota - Rakičan number of days * * * *
permitted exceedance number of days 3 3 3 3
Figure ZR05-3: Average annual concentration of SO2 and exceedances of critical annual level for the protection of vegetation (20 μg/m3)
Sources: 

Air quality monitoring database (DMKZ), Slovenian Environment Agency; Air quality monitoring database of Thermal power plant Šoštanj, Trbovlje and TE-TO Ljubljana, Insitute Milan Vidmar, 2016.

Note: Critical annual value of SO2 for the protection of vegetation should be considered at non-urban monitoring sites like Murska Sobota – Rakičan, Iskrba, Veliki Vrh, Zavodnje, Graška Gora, Kovk, Dobovec, Kum, Ravenska vas, Vnajnarje.

Note to table ZR5-3: * measurements are canceled, np=no data

Show data
1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001
Urban background µg/m3 44 42 32 22 23 25 21 16 14 12
Ljubljana Bežigrad µg/m3 38 45 33 21 33 34 27 15 10 11
Hrastnik µg/m3 62 51 32 29 24 27 25 21 23 17
Velenje µg/m3 19 19 12 6 10 11 10 10 7 5
Celje µg/m3 57 54 49 32 24 27 23 19 17 15
Nova Gorica µg/m3 np np np np np np np np np np
Suburban background µg/m3 62 61 41 34 29 29 26 19 18 12
Trbovlje µg/m3 69 71 49 48 37 40 32 23 18 14
Škale µg/m3 np np np np np np np 16 19 10
Rural background µg/m3 17 13 11 13 18 25 16 14 10 18
Iskrba µg/m3 np np np np np np np np np np
Kum µg/m3 17 13 11 13 18 25 16 14 10 18
Urban-traffic type µg/m3 59 51 39 35 29 27 23 19 16 14
- Maribor center µg/m3 47 42 30 28 24 23 18 17 13 10
Suburban - industrial type µg/m3 49 48 38 29 34 29 44 42 52 51
Šoštanj µg/m3 49 48 38 29 34 29 44 42 52 51
Rural/Industrial type µg/m3 53 47 46 41 38 53 50 45 37 32
- Zavodnje µg/m3 51 44 46 26 33 42 43 42 31 21
- Kovk µg/m3 73 59 70 58 35 76 55 57 53 40
- Vnajnarje µg/m3 np np np np 19 19 18 14 6 7
Veliki Vrh µg/m3 71 54 49 49 57 53 63 72 56 52
Graška Gora µg/m3 39 42 47 27 28 36 32 32 34 15
Ravenska vas µg/m3 56 34 34 50 51 82 82 57 45 51
Dobovec µg/m3 30 50 29 36 41 66 54 41 35 39
Rural/Agricultural type µg/m3 np np np np np np np np np np
Murska Sobota - Rakičan µg/m3 np np np np np np np np np np
annual critical conc. for vegetation protection µg/m3 20 20 20 20 20 20 20 20 20 20
2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011
Urban background µg/m3 11 9 9 7 6 5 5 4 4 4
Ljubljana Bežigrad µg/m3 9 11 8 5 4 3 2 4 2 3
Hrastnik µg/m3 22 8 15 10 9 6 5 4 4 5
Velenje µg/m3 8 8 6 4 5 3 4 2 2 3
Celje µg/m3 10 10 11 9 7 5 5 5 6 6
Nova Gorica µg/m3 6 7 7 7 7 7 8 4 * *
Suburban background µg/m3 15 15 8 9 5 3 3 4 3 6
Trbovlje µg/m3 15 16 9 15 7 3 2 5 3 7
Škale µg/m3 14 12 8 8 3 3 4 5 4 7
Rural background µg/m3 4 6 3 4 5 3 5 3
Iskrba µg/m3 np np np np 1 1 1 1 1 1
Kum µg/m3 4 6 4 7 9 5 8 4
Urban-traffic type µg/m3 12 15 14 10 6 4 3 5 8 5
- Maribor center µg/m3 8 9 8 8 5 3 2 5 * 3
Suburban - industrial type µg/m3 43 24 13 11 8 9 6 4 7 5
Šoštanj µg/m3 43 24 13 11 8 9 6 4 7 5
Rural/Industrial type µg/m3 32 31 30 22 10 8 7 6 6 6
- Zavodnje µg/m3 23 15 8 12 8 6 3 6 6 4
- Kovk µg/m3 10 52 61 30 12 9 12 8 8 11
- Vnajnarje µg/m3 8 10 np 8 4 4 3 np 3 3
Veliki Vrh µg/m3 56 45 30 33 20 14 8 5 6 6
Graška Gora µg/m3 21 10 6 6 6 5 4 3 2 2
Ravenska vas µg/m3 67 59 43 42 17 14 9 8 9 11
Dobovec µg/m3 40 28 31 23 6 7 8 6 6 8
Rural/Agricultural type µg/m3 5 5 5 5 6 5 6 np * *
Murska Sobota - Rakičan µg/m3 5 5 5 5 6 5 6 np * *
annual critical conc. for vegetation protection µg/m3 20 20 20 20 20 20 20 20 20 20
2012
Urban background µg/m3 6
Ljubljana Bežigrad µg/m3 6
Hrastnik µg/m3 5
Velenje µg/m3 4
Celje µg/m3 7
Nova Gorica µg/m3 *
Suburban background µg/m3 5
Trbovlje µg/m3 6
Škale µg/m3 7
Rural background µg/m3 4
Iskrba µg/m3 1
Kum µg/m3 6
Urban-traffic type µg/m3 3
- Maribor center µg/m3 4
Suburban - industrial type µg/m3 7
Šoštanj µg/m3 7
Rural/Industrial type µg/m3 6
- Zavodnje µg/m3 4
- Kovk µg/m3 10
- Vnajnarje µg/m3 3
Veliki Vrh µg/m3 7
Graška Gora µg/m3 2
Ravenska vas µg/m3 9
Dobovec µg/m3 7
Rural/Agricultural type µg/m3 *
Murska Sobota - Rakičan µg/m3 *
annual critical conc. for vegetation protection µg/m3 20

Goals

Compliance with limit values for sulphur dioxide (SO2) for human health and vegetation protection that have been in force since 1 January 2005:

  • 1-hour limit value for human health protection: 350 μg/m3 (permitted overage: 24-times within a calendar year),
  • 24-hour limit value for human health protection: 125 μg/m3 (permitted overage: 3-times within a calendar year),
  • critical value for the protection of vegetation in wintertime (1 October– 31 March): 20 μg/m3,
  • critical annual value for vegetation protection: 20 μg/m3.

The alert threshold for sulphur dioxide concentrations measured over three consecutive hours at locations representative for air quality in an area of at least 100 km2, an entire area or an agglomerated area may not exceed 500 µg/m3.


In urbanised areas in Slovenia that were heavily polluted by sulphur dioxide due to the large number of small and medium-sized boiler facilities using coal, limit values have not been exceeded since 2006. This is partially due to further expansion of district heating provided by large combined heat and power plants, a switch to gas as a heating source and the use of cleaner fuels for heating in general, and largely a result of the installation of a flue gas desulphurisation plant at the Trbovlje power plant and gradual connection of lower stacks to a flue gas desulphurisation plant at the Šoštanj power plant.

Occasionally, slightly elevated SO2 concentrations still occur at higher altitudes within the impact areas of the Šoštanj and Trbovlje thermal power plants as a result of direct transmission of flue gases from the power plants and during periods of pronounced temperature inversion in the colder part of the year. Also, elevated SO2 concentrations in the vicinity of the Šoštanj thermal power plant are a consequence of a limited capacity of the flue gas desulphurisation plant. Elevated SO2 concentrations in the Zasavje region are partially a result of an unfavourable settlement pattern at the bottom of narrow valleys with low-wind conditions in wintertime when the impact of emissions from small heating units and industry is greater. The impact of SO2 emissions from the Trbovlje power plant was greater in elevated areas of the Zasavje region during failures in the operation of the flue gas desulphurisation plant.

The critical annual SO2 concentration for vegetation protection (20 μg/m3) that is relevant at measuring sites in rural areas was last exceeded in 2006 at the Veliki Vrh measuring site.



TWITTER