Warsaw - Post Report Question and Answers

What is the air quality like at post (good/moderate/bad)? Are there seasonal air quality issues? Does the air quality have an impact on health?

The air quality is very bad in the winter due to the country's heavy reliance on coal fired power plants. Plan accordingly. - Oct 2021

Air quality is bad in the winter months as they burn coal. It affected our oldest who was 2-5 during our years in Poland. He needed an inhaler in the winter months and suffered more severe respiratory illnesses because of the bad air quality. We rarely played outside in the winter because he was affected by it so bad. Seasonal allergies affect people as Europe has different trees, grasses, molds, etc. - Jan 2021

Air pollution is a huge (and surprisingly not internationally-known) problem in Poland, and especially in major cities like Warsaw and Krakow. This is due to burning coal for fuel, as well as the widespread use of diesel cars. The air pollution is especially bad in the winter months (often at similar levels to Beijing). Embassy employees have air purifiers in their homes. It is also becoming increasingly common to wear smog masks in the winter, particularly among cyclists. - Sep 2019

Generally good. Some coal burning in winter is occasionally noticeable. - May 2018

In the winter, the air quality is bad. Invest in room air cleaners. - Apr 2018

Moderate in the winter...we run the AC sometimes to filter the air from the coal burning farm houses near us. - Dec 2016

It is not bad in the summer, but pretty unhealthy in the winter due to automobiles and coal smoke. AQI can get up to about 200 for pm2 in the winter. It's not up there with places like Beijing or Delhi, by any means, but I am not the only person I know who has developed a persistent cough. Bronchitis is pretty common. I eventually ended up using a daily inhaler due to "reactive airways" which I never had until moving here.

I have heard that they are banning coal fires so eventually it will get better, but it will take a while. They still sell portable home coal heaters at the hardware store as of this writing. - Mar 2016

Usually fine, although reportedly getting worse. - Sep 2015

Air quality in Warsaw is generally very good, though it can sometimes be a bit smoky when people burn their leaves and other brush in the many family-owned small farms/weekend getaway parks within the city. There is not a lot of heavy industry in Warsaw so you don't have to worry about industrial pollution like you might in other large cities of the world. - Nov 2014

Good. Some smokey air in the fall when people burn off the debris from their "ogrod" (gardens), but it only lasts a couple weeks. - Feb 2012

Good in summer, moderate in winter. Some coal is still burned, but generally it's better in Warsaw than the countryside. - Nov 2011

Good. - Aug 2011

If you are a smoker, you will love Poland; if you are not, then you have to get used to 2nd and 3rd-hand smoke, as Poles are smokers. Air polution in the big cities is a bit higher than normal, as there are so many vehicles running about. - Aug 2011

Good. - Mar 2011

Good - Jan 2011

Excellent. - Dec 2010

I've heard others complain about the air quality in the winter due to the use of coal, but I haven't noticed any problems. - Feb 2010


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