What Mexico City’s air pollution looks like

On Thursday, the city’s elementary schools were ordered closed and drivers told to stay off the roads in the Mexican capital due to poor air quality. Authorities have also recommended that residents avoid exercising outdoors.

That followed city officials’ declaration on Tuesday of an environmental emergency, due to severe air pollution exacerbated by wildfires.

Vehicles sit in traffic in Mexico City, Mexico, on Monday May 13, 2019.
At time of writing, the US Environmental Protection Agency’s AirNow index on air quality (AQI) described Mexico City’s air as an “unhealthy” level of 166. The lower the AQI, the less polluted it is.

Mexico is a city of more than 21 million people, and it has been plagued by air pollution for decades.

Visitors enjoy the view --despite air pollution -- from the Latin American tower viewpoint in Mexico City on May 14, 2019.

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