The whole planet has been affected by the pandemic for several months now, and consequently, it has had a great impact on the environment.
Several positive aspects have been noted by the European Environment Agency (EEA) on this point. Among these are the decrease in air and noise pollution, mainly due to the decrease in industrial activities and the number of vehicles on the roads. Indeed, in April, a 68% drop in nitrogen dioxide levels was calculated for Spain and 52% in France. In Quebec, we see the same trend, air pollution is said to have decreased by half during containment according to the Ministry of the Environment. Also, this situation has allowed several animal species to evolve more freely.
On the other hand, because of new health requirements, we see a drastic increase in the use of plastics, particularly single-use plastics (gloves, gowns, disinfectants in bottles, etc.) “The resurgence in demand for these products could call into question the EU’s efforts to reduce plastic pollution and move towards a more sustainable and circular plastic system,” says the agency. In addition, low oil costs during this period have led to a large decrease in the production costs of plastic products. At the level of Internet traffic, it would have increased from 35% to 60% in the confined countries, according to Omdia, a British company specialized in the analysis of the industry of networks and telecommunications. So, this leads to a considerable increase in greenhouse gas emissions for the digital sector.