Pristina - 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?

Winter air quality was the chief reason we did not extend. The embassy provides high quality filters for indoors. - Aug 2021

Bad in the winter, lots of people wear face masks if they have to spend time outside. Not bad in the late spring/summer. The problem is that people burn lignite coal in their homes when it's cold and all of that PLUS the power plants PLUS the geographic position of Pristina makes for terrible air. - Jul 2019

Very bad, especially in winter. Many people have problems. - Nov 2016

There is pollution caused by the burning of various fuels. If you have specific respiratory or other health concerns, it is something to consider --- because during the winter this is very prevalent. There is pollution from the energy factory as well. - Jun 2016

It can be unhealthy in the winter. They burn very dirty coal. We chose to live in the community 10 minutes outside of the city where the air is much cleaner (up on a hill with lots of wind.) Those living near the Embassy are more affected. The Embassy does provide air filters. An air monitor installed at the Embassy shows the air to be quite clean in the spring, summer, and fall. - May 2016

Moderate in the summer. Truly horrible in the winter. The two powerplants that supply most of Kosovo's power are right on Pristina's doorstep, and they burn the lowest-quality coal (which is abundant in Kosovo.) People also burn coal in their homes in the winter. All this leads to Pristina being enveloped in a vile yellow fog in the colder months. Its inescapable and revolting. - Aug 2015

Horrible the instant it cools down. Lignite is generally burned in the homes and the power plant emits various harmful chemicals. Pristina is in a bowl and the pollution tends to get trapped in it. I lived a little outside of downtown and the wind patterns worked in my favor. Also, be warned if you wear contact lenses. You'll be wearing glasses 24/7 when winter hits. The pollution will sting your eyes. - Jun 2014

Air quality is pretty good most of the time--but I live just outside the city, away from the worst of it. Those who live downtown say that air quality in the winter can be a problem, but it's nowhere near as bad as some other posts. - Apr 2014

Germia Park is known as "the lungs of the city" since the air quality in town can be poor due to the burning of soft lignite coal for both power generation and heat. Downtown Pristina is surrounded by hills, making the air feel like it is stuck in the bowl of the city, so a hike in the outskirts is a pleasant relief, especially in winter when residences also burn lignite and wood in their home fireplaces. If you have allergies or asthma, the air quality may make it worse, or you may need to change meds/inhalers. - Apr 2013

Very unhealthy in winter. Lignite coal is the main fuel used, and the smell and pollution are very bad. It's much better in summer. - Sep 2012


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