HIGH levels of air pollution (particulate matter) are currently being monitored in the Newry area, with moderate levels in the Armagh, Belfast, Derry/Londonderry and North Down areas.
Moderate levels of nitrogen dioxide are also currently being monitored in the Ballymena and Dungiven areas.
This localised air pollution is likely to be associated with the build up of emissions from vehicles and home heating during the current calm, cold weather conditions experienced across Northern Ireland.
The forecast for the rest of the week is for moderate levels of air pollution in milder weather conditions, with the possibility of these rising to high at the weekend, if colder weather returns.
During periods of High Air Pollution the symptoms of people with lung or heart disease may worsen. Healthy people are unlikely to experience any ill effects.
Hourly updates on levels of particulate matter (PM10 and PM2.5), sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, ozone and carbon monoxide are available on the Department’s website: http://www.airqualityni.co.uk and the Department’s freephone helpline 0800 556 677, which also offers health advice to those who may be particularly sensitive to air pollution.