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PM2,5 concentrations

Last update of indicator16.01.2024

Indicator definition

The indicator describes the level of air pollution in Slovakia, i.e. the fulfillment of the limit or target values of air pollution for  PM2.5


t, kg, kt


Related policy documents and targets

Limit values for assessing the level of air pollution according to Decree of the Ministry of the Interior of the Slovak Republic no. 250/2023 Coll. on air quality

Limit values for the protection of human health
Pollutant Average period Limit value
PM10 1 day 50 µg/m3 must not exceed more than 35 times per calendar year
calendar year 40 µg/m3
PM2,5 calendar year Since January 1, 2020: 20 µg/m3
SO2 1 hour 350 µg/m3 must not be exceeded more than 4 times per calendar year
1 day 125 µg/m3 must not be exceeded more than 3 times per calendar year
NO2 1 hour 200 µg/m3 must not be exceeded more than 18 times per calendar year
calendar year 40 µg/m3
CO The largest daily 8-hour mean value1) 10 mg/m3
Pb calendar year 0,5 µg/m3
Benzene calendar year 5 µg/m3


1) The largest daily 8-hour mean concentration is selected by examining 8-hour moving averages calculated from hourly data and updated hourly. Each 8-hour average calculated in this way is assigned to the day on which it ends, i.e. j. the first calculation period for any single day is the period from 5:00 p.m. the previous day until 1:00 a.m. of the given day; the last calculation period for any one day is the period from 4:00 p.m. until the end of the given day.

Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (Agenda 2030) was approved by the UN General Assembly (including Slovakia) in September 2015 ("Transforming our world: Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development") and represents the most comprehensive set of global priorities for achieving sustainable development to date. The 2030 Agenda builds on the UN Millennium Declaration from 2000 and calls on states to take a coordinated approach to solving global challenges. The goals of sustainable development that it sets concern all countries of the world, regardless of their level of economic and social development. Its key principles are transformation, integration, and universality. It contains 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) developed into 169 related sub-goals, which aim to guide the structural political, economic, and social transformation of individual countries in the world in response to the threats facing humanity today. It connects all three dimensions of sustainable development: economic, social, and environmental. The 2030 Agenda is not legally binding. It expresses the intention of countries to lead their development towards sustainability and to set their national policies, strategies, and planning to contribute to the achievement of global goals. The Slovak Republic signed up for the implementation of Agenda 2030 in the document "Starting points for the implementation of Agenda 2030 for sustainable development" approved by Government Resolution no. 95/2016, while he perceives it primarily as an opportunity and a means to determine long-term priorities for the development of our country. The elaboration of the objectives of the 2030 Agenda for the conditions of the Slovak Republic will largely take place in the form of updating existing sectoral plans and concepts. In this context, it was established by the resolution of the Government of the Slovak Republic no. 350 of July 24, 2017, of the Government Council of the Slovak Republic for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which will ensure that the issue of sustainable development becomes an integral part of all public policies.

The European Green Deal The European

Green Deal represents the European Commission's plan for the ecological transformation of the European Union's economy in the interests of a sustainable future. Its primary goal is to ensure that by 2050 Europe will be the first-ever climate-neutral continent. The given long-term goal means that by 2050 the EU will transform into a fair and prosperous society with a modern and competitive economy that uses resources efficiently, where net greenhouse gas emissions will be zero, and where economic growth does not depend on the use of resources.

Greener Slovakia – Environmental Policy Strategy of the Slovak Republic until 2030 (Envirostrategy 2030)

The environmental strategy is a basic strategic document for the environment with long-term goals aimed at the transition to a green, low-carbon, and inclusive economy. The Envirostrategy 2030 defines the vision until 2030 (to achieve a better quality of the environment and a sustainable circular economy using as few non-renewable natural resources and hazardous substances as possible), identifies basic systemic problems, sets goals for 2030, and proposes framework measures to improve the current situation.

Climate change adaptation strategy of the Slovak Republic - update

The main goal of the updated adaptation strategy is to increase the resilience and improve the preparedness of the Slovak Republic to face the adverse consequences of climate change and establish an institutional framework and coordination mechanism to ensure the effective implementation of adaptation measures at all levels and in all areas. The achievement of the main goal of adaptation should contribute to the fulfillment of sub-goals, which are: ensuring the active creation of a national adaptation policy, implementing adaptation measures and monitoring their effectiveness, strengthening the projection of the goals and recommendations of the adaptation strategy within the framework of multi-level public governance and business support, raising public awareness on the issue of climate change, support for synergy between adaptation and mitigation measures and the use of an ecosystem approach in the implementation of adaptation measures, and support for the reflection of the goals and recommendations of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Paris Agreement. The strategy tries to connect scenarios and possible consequences of climate change with proposals for suitable adaptation measures in the widest possible range of areas and sectors. From the point of view of adaptation to the adverse consequences of climate change, the key areas and sectors are considered to be: rock environment and geology, soil environment, natural environment and biodiversity, water regime in the country and water management, residential environment, population health, agriculture, forestry, transport, tourism traffic, industry, energy and other areas of business and the area of risk management.

Low-carbon development strategy of the Slovak Republic until 2030 with a view to 2050

The Slovak Republic is fully aware of the seriousness and extent of the threat posed by climate change. It is also for this reason that Slovakia, as well as the entire EU and dozens of other countries around the world, have committed to achieving climate neutrality as early as 2050. The low-carbon development strategy of the Slovak Republic until 2030 with a view to 2050 (hereafter the strategy) aims to select and analyze measures in a cost-effective manner, while support from the relevant departments and state and public administration bodies will be essential for implementation and, what is important, that were these policies and other unrelated policies cross-sectionally interconnected and consistent both between individual departments and within individual departments. The strategy represents a cross-sectional document across all sectors of the economy, which must be done by individual policies in such a way that they complement each other in order to meet the common goal, which is to completely decarbonize the whole of Slovakia by the middle of this century. Slovakia set this ambitious goal only at the last stage of the preparation of this strategy (when the modeling had already been completed), and therefore only less ambitious scenarios of emission reductions (and increasing captures) that do not get us to climate neutrality are analyzed in detail.

National emission reduction program of the Slovak Republic
Among the biggest environmental challenges of the Slovak Republic are also the goals based on Directive (EU) 2016/2284 on the reduction of national emissions of certain air pollutants, which amends Directive 2003/35/EC and repeals Directive 2001/81/EC.
These are commitments to reduce emissions of sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides, non-methane volatile organic compounds, ammonia and PM2.5, dust particles by 2030. To achieve these goals, the MoE of the Slovak Republic has currently developed a draft of the National Emissions Reduction Program, in which policies and measures for achieving the aforementioned national commitments in two stages: the period from 2020 to 2029 and the period from 2030 onwards.
The National Emissions Reduction Program contributes to the achievement of air quality targets under Directive 2008/50/EC, as well as ensuring compliance with plans and programs set out in other relevant policy areas, including climate, energy, agriculture, industry, and transport. At the same time, this will support the transfer of investments into clean and efficient technologies.

Key question

Is good air quality being achieved, is the pollution level below the limit value for PM2.5?

Key messages

  • In 2022, the limit value for PM2.5 was exceeded at three automatic air quality monitoring stations: Veľká Ida, Letná; Jelšava, Jesenského and Plášťovce.
Change since 2005 Change since 2015 Last year-on-year change
- emo_neutral emo_neutral
- Despite the slightly positive development, exceedances of permitted values are still recorded.

Exceedings of the permissible values related to the protection of human health for PM2.5 were recorded at 3 monitoring stations in 2022 as well as in 2021.

Summary assessment

Evaluation of air pollution according to limit values for human health protection (2022)  


Health and safety



Averaging period

1 year

Parameter average
Limit value (µg.m–3)


Maximum number of exceedances allowed


Bratislava, Kamenné nám.


Bratislava, Trnavské Mýto


Bratislava, Jeséniova


Bratislava, Mamateyova


Bratislava, Púchovská 13


Košice, Štefánikova


Košice, Amurská


Veľká Ida, Letná 22


Banská Bystrica,Štefánik. náb.


Banská Bystrica, Zelená


Jelšava, Jesenského


Hnúšťa, Hlavná


Lučenec, Gemerská cesta 17

Zvolen, J. Alexyho


Žarnovica, Dolná 20

Žiar nad Hronom, Jilemnického


Bratislavský kraj

Malacky, Mierové nám.2)

Pezinok, Obrancov mieru 13
Rohožník, Senická cesta 2) 14
Senec, Boldocká 14


Kojšovská hoľa  
Trebišov, T.G. Masaryka 16

Strážske, Mierová


Krompachy, SNP


Nitriansky kraj

Nitra, Janíkovce


Nitra, Štúrova

Komárno, Vnútorná Okružná* 14
Plášťovce 22


Gánovce Meteo. st.  

Humenné, Nám. slobody


Prešov, arm. gen. Ľ. Svobodu


Vranov nad Top., M.R.Štefánika


Stará Lesná, AÚ SAV, EMEP

Starina Vodná nádrž, EMEP  

Kolonické sedlo

Poprad, Železničná 12
Bardejov, Pod Vinbargom 15


Prievidza, Malonecpalská


Bystričany, Rozvodňa SSE


Handlová, Morovianska cesta

Púchov, 1.mája 16

Trenčín, Hasičská



Senica, Hviezdoslavova


Trnava, Kollárova


Topoľníky, Aszód, EMEP


Sereď, Vinárska 12


Chopok, EMEP  
Liptovský Mikuláš, Školská 14

Martin, Jesenského


Oščadnica* 17

Ružomberok, Riadok


Žilina, Obežná


  Marking of yield: ≥ 90% of valid measurements Exceeding the limit value is marked in red

*) the Malacky monitoring station stopped measuring on 4/29/2022 and was replaced by AMS in Rohožník on 8/5/2022
Source: SHMI

Detailed assessment

These particles were monitored at 47 stations. The minimum required monitoring scope has been met. PM2.5 monitoring was ensured by the same method as PM10 measurements, with TEOM and BAM devices. The required number of valid measured data (90%) was achieved at 46 monitoring stations. The Malacky monitoring station ended its measurement on 4/29/2022 and was replaced by the AMS in Rohožník on 6/15/2022.

For PM2.5, a limit value of 20 μg.m-3 (for the average annual concentration) has been set, which entered into force on 1.1.2020 (Executive Decision of the Commission 2011/850/EU, Annex 1, point 5). In 2022, the limit value was exceeded at three automatic air quality monitoring stations: Veľká Ida, Letná; Jelšava, Jesenského and Plášťovce. When comparing the dependence of PM2.5 concentrations on the average minimum monthly temperature and wind speed, it can be found that while higher PM2.5 values in Jelšava, and Plášťovce are measured in the cold season, in Veľká Ida they can occur in any part of the year, which is characteristic due to the year-round influence of the metallurgical complex located near it. The highest concentrations were recorded in Jelšava and in Veľká Ida in the extremely cold January 2017. It is likely that in Veľká Ida, in addition to the influence of an industrial source of air pollution, the influence of household heating is also manifested.

Indicator of average exposure to PM2.5 over the last twelve years. Its decrease in 2021 can probably be explained by the decrease in emissions in Slovakia and neighboring countries.

Indicator of average exposure to PM2.5 (IAE)

Rok 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
IAE [μg.m-3] 24,4 24,4 23,1 22,6 20,4 19,9 18,7 19,0 18,4 18,1 16,5 15,7 15,9

Source: SHMI

The year 2022 was exceptional in that we obtained the first year-round results of air quality monitoring at the new stations. For both PM10 and PM2.5 particles, limit values were exceeded at a total of 3 stations, of which 1 is newly established. It is about Plášťovce, where we can clearly attribute the exceeding of the limit values of PM particles to local heating plants (since denser traffic and industrial sources are absent here) - family houses that heat with solid fuel. Moreover, another of the new stations, Žarnovica, barely exceeded the limit value for PM2.5. Similar to previous years, the target value for carcinogenic benzo(a)pyrene was exceeded at several stations, while some of them are new (Plášťovce, Žarnovica, Púchov, and Oščadnica). It points to a potentially serious problem with air quality even in unmonitored locations in Slovakia with worsened dispersion conditions and a greater proportion of solid fuels for heating. In an effort to improve air quality in Slovakia, it will therefore be necessary to focus mainly on local heating systems.

The dominant source of PM2.5 emissions is the heating of households, mostly with solid fuel, which accounts for up to 80% of the total emissions of PM2.5 every year. The spatial distribution of PM2.5 concentrations in Slovakia was calculated by the RIO model, while the outputs from the AtmoStreet model for the year 2022 (12.9%), which considered only emissions from local heating plants, were used as auxiliary spatial data; ventilation index (18%), altitude (53.3%) and land use (14.9%). After subsequent adjustment of the output of the RIO model using the IDW-R method, we get RMSE = 0.2 μg·m-3 and BIAS = –0.05 μg·m-3 when compared with measurements. The average annual limit value of 20 μg·m-3 in 2022 in this spatial resolution was exceeded only in places, namely in Orava, Dolny Liptov, Gemeri in the vicinity of Jelšava, in the vicinity of Košice, in the vicinity of Martin and Čierne Balog. The highest concentrations are similar to the case of PM10 in locations with a large number of local solid fuel heaters, in closed mountain valleys.

Average annual concentration of PM2.5 (µg.m-3) (2022)

Source: SHMI


Ing. Dorota Hericová, SAŽP,

Definitions related to the indicator:

The aim in air quality is to maintain air quality in places where air quality is good, and in other cases to improve air quality. Good air quality is the level of air pollution lower than the limit value and the target value. Air quality assessment is the determination of the level of air pollution using methods of measurement, calculation, prediction or estimation.

Emission - the penetration of air pollutants in the ground layer from the place of origin to another place is a consequence of the emission
Limit value - the level of air pollution determined on the basis of scientific knowledge in order to prevent, prevent or reduce harmful effects on human health or the environment, which is to be achieved at a given time and is not to be exceeded from that time. The limit value must not be exceeded by more than the tolerance limit from the established dates. The tolerance limit is the percentage of the limit value by which the limit value can be exceeded in accordance with the established conditions.
Target value - the level of air pollution determined in order to prevent, prevent or reduce harmful effects on human health or the environment, to be achieved at a given time, if possible. A critical level is a level of air pollution determined on the basis of scientific knowledge, when exceeding which direct adverse effects may occur on trees, other plants or natural ecosystems in addition to humans.
Total deposition - the total amount of pollutants that have been transferred from the atmosphere to the surface of soil, vegetation, water and buildings in a given area and at a given time
EMEP – European Monitoring and Evaluation Program – Program for monitoring and evaluation of long-range pollution transmission in Europe

AOT40 – target value of ozone exposure index for vegetation protection. AOT40 expressed in μg/m3.h is the sum of the differences between hourly concentrations greater
as 80 μg/m3 (= 40 parts per billion) and 80 μg/m3 during the given period using only 1-hour values measured each day from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Central European Time (CET). The target value is 18,000 µg/m3.h (5-year average). The AOT40 value for forest protection is calculated in the same way as the AOT40 for vegetation protection, but for the period from April 1 to September 30. The reference level for reporting to the EC is 20,000 µg/m3.h. This value only applies to suburban, rural and background stations.

The program and the integrated air quality improvement program determine air quality improvement measures in air quality management areas for the purpose of achieving good air quality at a given time. In areas of air quality management in which limit values or target values for which the deadline for their achievement has already expired are exceeded, the program or integrated program shall determine appropriate measures to shorten the period during which the specified values are exceeded as much as possible . Programs can also include measures that are applied in action plans to ensure air quality, as well as special measures aimed at protecting sensitive groups of the population, including children.


Air quality is generally determined by the content of pollutants in the outdoor air. Air quality assessment is carried out in accordance with Act no. 146/2023 Coll. on air protection. The basic starting point for the assessment of air quality in the Slovak Republic are the results of measurements of the concentrations of pollutants in the air, which are carried out by the Slovak Hydrometeorological Institute (SHMÚ) at the stations of the National Air Quality Monitoring Network (NMSKO).

National Air Quality Monitoring Network (2022)

Source: SHMI

Zones and agglomerations form large territories and collectively cover the entire territory of Slovakia. In each zone, the spatial distribution of pollutant concentrations is quite variable – it usually includes areas with significant sources of emissions and degraded air quality, but also relatively clean areas without sources. In order to facilitate the management of air quality, the so-called areas of air quality management. These areas are a subset of individual zones - each zone can contain several.

If the measured concentrations of any pollutant in the air at a given monitoring station exceed the limit or target value in the monitored year, the relevant territory that the station represents with its measurement is, according to Act no. 146/2023 Coll. on air protection, declared to be the area of air quality management. The district office in the authority of the region is obliged to develop a Program for improving air quality for this area. If limit values or target values are exceeded for several pollutants, the district office in the regional headquarters will develop an integrated program for those areas. Monitoring and assessment of air quality is carried out by the Slovak Hydrometeorological Institute (SHMI) as an authorized organization in all agglomerations and zones for polluting substances for which limit values or target values are determined and for ozone precursors.
SHMI annually proposes a list of air protection areas based on air pollution monitoring (for a period longer than one year), while the list of zones and agglomerations remains unchanged. A pollutant is removed from the air protection areas list only after the concentrations of the pollutant at the station do not exceed the limit value for three years in a row.

Air quality assessment is being carried out
a) by permanent measurement in agglomerations or in zones where the level of air pollution by a given polluting substance is higher than the upper limit for assessing the level of air pollution, and in the case of arsenic, cadmium, nickel and benzo(a)pyrene, also in zones and agglomerations, in which the level of air pollution is between the upper limit and the lower limit for assessing the level of air pollution; permanent measurement can be supplemented by modeling techniques or indicative measurements in order to provide adequate information on the spatial distribution of air quality,

b) by a combination of permanent measurements, indicative measurements and modeling techniques in agglomerations and zones in which the level of air pollution is the same or higher than the lower limit for the assessment of the level of air pollution and the same or lower than the upper limit for the assessment of the level of air pollution,

c) by a combination of permanent measurements, indicative measurements and modeling techniques in agglomerations and zones in which the level of air pollution in a representative time period is between the upper limit and the lower limit for assessing the level of air pollution, if it concerns arsenic, cadmium, nickel and benzo(a )pyrene,

d) modeling techniques or objective estimation techniques in agglomerations and zones in which the level of air pollution is lower than the lower limit for assessing the level of air pollution.

Source of data:


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