Air pollution from burning fossil fuels is responsible for more than 4m premature deaths around the world each year and costs the global economy about $8bn a day, according to a study from Greenpeace. Puts the effects of the virus into proportion somewhat. Separately, analysis by the World Wildlife Fund estimates that loss of nature will wipe £368bn a year off global economic growth by 2050. Pollution leads, among other things, to a loss of the habitats which provide homes for marine life, supports fisheries and gives natural protection against flooding and erosion. (Guardian 12 Feb 2020)
My take: Now, suddenly, the air is more breathable, and the seawater in Venice is apparently clearer than anyone has seen it for decades. Where I live we are on the flight path into the, very busy, local airport. Flights normally end and around 11p.m and start again at 6 a.m. The racket is constant, although one tunes it out. I rely on the first flights of the day to get me up at crack of dawn; I am now over-sleeping without the noisy “alarm”. In addition, the traffic is reduced on the street where we live. The main, and best, result is a freshness and clarity of air which hits you on leaving the house. One can also park the car more easily, as well. Two silver linings to the crisis, even if we are not using the car.