STA, 12 July - Slovenia's capital has placed 279th among 344 European cities in the European city air quality viewer with its air quality categorised as poor. Maribor ranks 207th having moderately clean air.
The ranking, released on the website of the European Environment Agency, classifies cities from the cleanest to the most polluted on the basis of average levels of fine particulate matter, or PM2.5, over the past two calendar years.
The list is topped by Umea, Sweden, followed by Faro and Funchal in Portugal, with all other cities whose air quality is categorised as good located in North Europe. The annual mean concentration of fine particulate matter in those cities does not exceed the annual guideline value of the World Health Organisation of 5 micrograms per cubic metre.
Ranked lower down on the list are cities whose air quality is categorised as fair (up to 10 micrograms/m3), moderate (up to 15 micrograms/m3), poor (up to 25 micrograms/m3) and finally very poor, the cities whose levels are at or above the EU limit value of 25 micrograms/m3.
Placing 279th, Ljubljana ranks slightly above its Croatian counterpart Zagreb, in 282nd, but below the Hungarian capital of Budapest, in 268th, or the Croatian port city of Rijeka, in 155th, for example.
The cities with the poorest air quality are Italy's Padua and Cremona and Nowy Sazc in Poland. Venice places 341st, which makes it the lowest ranked city among those whose air quality is categorised as poor rather than very poor.