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FORAIR - IT: Air quality forecast system for Italy

FORAIR - IT is a project of the Atmospheric Pollution Laboratory, developed with Arianet s.r.l., for forecasting short-term (3 days) atmospheric pollution over Italy.

Every day, FORAIR - IT produces air quality forecasts for the entire Italian territory, at 4 km of horizontal spatial resolution, for each hour of the next 3 days. In this way, it is possible to know in advance atmospheric concentrations of pollutants damaging human health (fine particulate matter, nitrogen oxides, ozone).


This information is useful to citizens, who can adopt conscious behaviors:

  • reducing personal exposure to air pollution, for example by avoiding certain areas during the most polluted hours
  • reducing individual contribution to polluting emissions, for example by reducing domesting heating or the use of private car.

Air pollution forecasting is also useful to local administrations, that can provide a rapid and adequate response to critical pollution episodes, adopting measures to limit emissions and reduce population exposure to pollution, in particular for the most vulnerable groups (children, elderly, people affected by respiratory or heart diseases).

The forecast of national air pollution in support of the Italian Ministry of Environment and Energy Security can be integrated with similar instruments of the Italian Regions, facilitating the understanding of the causes of critical episodes and the adoption of adequate national measures to reduce polluting emissions, coordinated with measures within the competence of the Regions.

The FORAIR - IT forecasting system consists of a meteorological module and a module for calculating pollutant emissions, providing input data to a CTM (Chemical Transport Model) which computes the transport and diffusion of pollutants in the atmosphere. The system produces the forecast of hourly concentrations of the main pollutants of environmental and health interest (PM10 and PM2.5, NO2, O3), for the following 3 days.

Born on the MINNI experience, the national air quality system of the Italian Ministry of the Environment, Land and Sea, FORAIR - IT is in line with the state of the art of national air quality forecasting systems in Europe (France-Prev’Air, Spain-Caliope, United Kingdom – UK-AIR pollution forecast, Germany-EURAD). The system uses official data from the ISPRA national inventory of pollutant emissions and from Copernicus Atmospheric System.